10 Maine Counties See Population Decline in 2008


As I have previously blogged here, Maine is now an out-migrant state with fewer people moving in than are moving out.  Now, according to data released today by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Census Bureau, 10 Maine counties saw their population decline between July 1, 2007 and July 1, 2008–see accompanying table (click “continue reading” to view table).  Counties include: Aroostook (-276), Franklin (-43), Hancock (-75), Knox (-37), Lincoln (-141), Piscataquis (-201), Sagadahoc (-12), Somerset (-203), Waldo (-127) and Washington (-205).

Since July 1, 2000, 3 Maine counties have seen chronic population declines: Aroostook (-2,187), Piscataquis (-283) and Washington (-1,393).

Not all of these population declines are due to out-migration.  Some of these counties face serious imbalances between their birth rate and death rate.  In other words, the population in some counties is aging rapidly with few young folks to sustain population growth.  This phenomenon is called “Demographic Winter” and too few folks in Maine are heeding the warning signs, especially policy-makers.