Rhode Island Leads the Nation…in Population Loss

Tipped off by 7 to 7, I went over to the U.S. Census Bureau web site, which has just released population estimates up to July 2007 (raw data here). From the AP summary:

Rhode Island is losing residents at a faster clip than any other state in the nation.
New population estimates being released today by the Census Bureau show that in the year ending July 1, the state’s population declined by four-tenths of percent. Rhode Island lost just over 3,800 people to end up with an estimated 1.058 million residents.
According to the Census figures, the only other state to lose population was Michigan, which saw a decline of three-tenths of a point.

Here are some more details . First is a list of raw population numbers and rankings from 2006 to 2007; it is broken out by the U.S. as a whole as well as four geographic regions and RI itself (I apologize for the table lines not being completely drawn and other truncation. Thanks to “chalkdust” for giving a heads up on some oversights on my part. The perils of hasty post compilation!):

ri-census1.bmp

Note that over the past year (as usual) the Northeast is the slowest growing region and Rhode Island is at the very bottom of all states. Here’s another table showing the raw numbers:
ri-census2.bmp

And another table that summarizes rates per 1,000 people:
ri-census3.bmp

Finally, here is a graph of the net internal migration for Rhode Island up until 2006.
ri-internal-migration.bmp

Starting in 2004, but really picking up speed in 2005 and 2006, our state has been hemorrhaging people. Time to shrink government too, huh?

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chalkdust
chalkdust
13 years ago

Andrew,
A heads-up: Perhaps I am missing something, but aren’t your second and third tables identical, rather than the third table being percentages?
If RI’s population is about 1 million, a loss of 3800 is about 4/10 of one percent.

Tom W
Tom W
13 years ago

Given all of the illegals that have moved into RI – and still we suffered a population decline – it would be fascinating to see figures for the exodus of the middle class.

Marc
Marc
13 years ago

Chalkdust, Thanks, I posted while still updating. -Marc

Chalkdust
Chalkdust
13 years ago

Marc (Not Andrew, sorry!)
I should have seen that it was still in process. Cheers.

Marc
Marc
13 years ago

Tom,
I looked at some other data and international immigration has been around 3500 people a year between 2003-2006. In 2001-2002 it was around 4,000 a year. So it looks like the rate has been fairly steady over the last few years. The data I have doesn’t parse out emigration by income. Maybe I’ll find some, though.
Marc

chalkdust
chalkdust
13 years ago

OK, not to be too persnickety, but the table marked “percentage change” is really “change per 1000”. RI lost 3.6 people per 1000, but the percentage change in population is .036%, not 3.6%, right?
This is not to detract from my respect and apprecation for the work it took to put up the tables. Thanks for that.

Chalkdust
Chalkdust
13 years ago

make that .36%. I’ll shut up now.

Tom W
Tom W
13 years ago

>>The data I have doesn’t parse out emigration by income. Maybe I’ll find some, though.
Marc,
The other recent posting re: the Poverty Pimp Institute report that said, among other things, that RI had a loss in average income would support, inferentially at least, that middle class people are leaving / being displaced by poor people.

Marc
Marc
13 years ago

Chalkdust, thanks again…
Tom W, correct, I just wish there were some readily available hard data.

Bob
Bob
13 years ago

I saw a reference to this in today’s Wall Street Journal.
RI is a welfare state, folks. The middle class continues to shrink as the state continues to serve itself.
This will never change for the better. I can’t wait to get the hell out of here.

Mike
Mike
13 years ago

“Turn out the lights, the party’s over, they say all good things must end. Call it tonight, the party’s over. And tomorrow starts the same old thing again.”
Dandy Don Meredith
Progressive superstars (LOL) Paiva-Weed and Fox were just on Lively Experiment. In a pathetic half hour tap dance they did NOT discuss the following:
1. Reducing pay
2. or benefits
3. or pensions
4. or co-pays
5. or JCLS
6. Or Judiciary
7. Illegals
8. Babysitting
9. “Child-only” welfare
10. 60 month time limits
11. “Waivers”
12. Repealing unfunded mandates
13. Staffing levels
14 Anything else that might make sense.
Anyone else looking forward to this session?
4 days and counting.
Stock up on the popcorn.
The over/under for the first brown baby held aloft at the state house with a GOVERNOR-PLEASE DON’T STARVE ME! placard is January 28.

Greg
Greg
13 years ago

I’m under. I say Martin Luthor King Jr. Day is your start date.
“Blah blah blah years ago, Martin Luthor blah blah blah had a dream blah blah blah still not realized blah blah blah corporate blah blah blah (insert 20 minutes of socialist blather here) blah blah blah Please Mrs. Carcieri talk to your husband blah blah show mercy blah blah the children”

John
John
13 years ago

Tom W and Marc,
Re: your search for evidence that the relatively few people who have generated about 40% of personal income tax collections are leaving. The sharp decline in income tax collections noted at the November REC is another piece of evidence, combined with the population data presented on this site in the past, and data on RI’s declining median income, that support the inference that the long maligned “rich” (at least by RI standards) are fleeing the Ocean State at a quickening pace.
Given the near certainty of a sharp, and perhaps prolonged recession in 2008-2009, and the apparent determination of the General Assembly to raise taxes to plug the $650 million (and growing) budget hole, it would appear that the good ship RI is sinking (at least in the fiscal and economic sense, and, for Democrats, the political sense as well) at a rapidly increasing rate.
But show me a single member of the Democratic leadership who can face this.

Monique
Editor
13 years ago

Very good, Greg. (Blah blah.)

Greg
Greg
13 years ago

You know what will seal the fates faster than anything else?
A strong nor’easter or a hurricane. A mini Katrina will bankrupt the state in moments and the abject failure of government to solve serious issues will force local community groups, churches, and non-profits to step up and demonstrate that, when push comes to shove they can do it better.
And maybe, just maybe, enough people will see it for what it is, ask ‘what are we really paying for?’ and make a change.
Or they could go through all of that and re-elect Ray Nagin.

Tom W
Tom W
13 years ago

Greg,
Heck we don’t need a Katrina. As was previewed a couple of weeks ago, a few decent sized snow storms will bury this State (pun intended)!
A perfect Rhode Island storm – the collision and merging of three fronts: a fiscal house of cards; nepotism-fed incompetence and Democrat hubris (i.e., “The public? Hah! They’ve always reelected us, they always will – so screw ’em!”).

chalkdust
chalkdust
13 years ago

From the census in 2000 to 2007, RI’s population grew .6%. The US average was 6%. We were fourth lowest in population growth, but we didn’t actually lose population over the entire period.
I can’t get too excited about people leaving RI. It’s already the second most densely populated state.
I agree it’s important, however, to look at who is leaving and who is coming, and agree it’s bad to lose net tax contributors and gain net tax consumers. It would be good to have (or observe) an intelligent discussion about why it’s happening and what to do about it, but given this display….
Mike: “The over/under for the first brown baby held aloft at the state house…”
Greg:”I’m under. I say Martin Luthor King Jr. Day is your start date.”
Monique: “Very good, Greg.”
….Anchor Rising is not the place to look for it. Too bad.

Greg
Greg
13 years ago

Chalk, if we didn’t laugh once in a while we’d cry.
Lighten.
Up.
This is going to be fun to watch. The perfect collapse of government not entirely unlike a souffle on a trampoline.
Might as well stock up on drinks, pop some corn, settle into the couch and watch the unions and the poverty pimps eat each other for the last dollar.

Monique
Editor
13 years ago

Oh, you want the real reasons, Chalkdust? Sure.
Seventh highest taxes in the country including specifically high property taxes.
Dead last for business climate, creating a dearth of good jobs.
Children short changed by very poor performing school systems (unlike, for example, neighbor Massachusetts).
Bottom of the barrel spending on highways, bridges and higher education.
Misguided spending of tax dollars on maxed out social programs.
Misguided spending of tax dollars on an over-sized and extremely well compensated state work force, grotesquely making the state itself the largest employer in the state.
In fact, all we aspire to is average-ness. Average taxes. Average performing schools. Average business climate. Rhode Island’s position at the top or bottom of all the wrong lists is not where we need to be.

Andrew
Editor
13 years ago

I can’t get too excited about people leaving RI. It’s already the second most densely populated state.

If we accept this as a primary factor in Rhode Island’s population decline, then the policy decisions made over the past 10-15 years that have turned state government into a giant machine for funneling subsidies to places where, under your model, no one wants to live are highly irrational.
Even if you accept that people leaving Rhode Island is somehow inevitable, the choices of our governing elites are still accelerating that process.

rhody
rhody
13 years ago

If people are leaving Rhode Island, where do they go? Just about any state we might go to gets derided here as a liberal haven (Vermont, New Hampshire, California, Colorado, etc.).
Austin, Texas, or Salt Lake City (Utah’s non-theocracy enclave) might not be bad, either.
Or shall we start a new society for Rhode Island expats in Alabama or Mississippi?

Tom W
Tom W
13 years ago

>> “grotesquely making the state itself the largest employer in the state….”
Hmmm, everyone working for the government. A definition of communism / socialism, is it not? So we’re well on our way to a “progressives” dream, aren’t we?
“The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings; the inherent virtue of socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.” – Sir Winston Churchill
“Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.” – Sir Winston Chuchill

Anthony
Anthony
13 years ago

Does this surprise anyone? RI has not been economically competitive in the region for years. The advent of globalization only strains the state’s ability to compete.
Has any major company re-located to RI since Fidelity opened up shop in 1998?

John
John
13 years ago

Rhody: You asked where to Rhode Islanders go who leave the state. IRS has the answers you seek: data is here:
http://www.irs.gov/taxstats/indtaxstats/article/0,,id=96943,00.html

rhody
rhody
13 years ago

John, forgive me if I’m reading it wrong, but all that link offers is some stats in North Dakota. The IRS, apparently, is charging us for state-by-state migration information.

Mike
Mike
13 years ago

If New Hampshire is your idea of a “liberal haven” with 0% sales/income taxes, police and fire actually (grab the smelling salts) working until 55, welfare/babysitting benefits sliced to the bone and all public employees receiving vastly inferior pay/benefits/pensions as compared to Brewsterland I am “all aboard” for making RI that brand of “liberal haven”.
What about you Rhody?

rhody
rhody
13 years ago

Believe me, the first time something went wrong in New Hampshire, we’d all find a way to blame it on Kate Brewster.
You can take the boy out of Rhode Island, but you can’t take the Rhode Island out of the boy.

Citizen Critic
Citizen Critic
13 years ago

If people are leaving Rhode Island, where do they go? Just about any state we might go to gets derided here as a liberal haven (Vermont, New Hampshire, California, Colorado, etc.).
Austin, Texas, or Salt Lake City (Utah’s non-theocracy enclave) might not be bad, either.
Or shall we start a new society for Rhode Island expats in Alabama or Mississippi?
++++++++++++++++++
Idaho.
😉

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