The executive director of the Panhandle Area Development District says it will be vital that Panhandle residents participate fully in next year’s U-S Census.
The most recent population estimates by the Census Bureau showed a continued decline in the area in 2018, with the 11 Panhandle counties losing nearly 1,100 residents, down 1.27% from the 2017 estimate of 85,000.
Jeff Kelley tells KNEB News a declining future population count could be accompanied by less money for items such as roads and economic development. “What they see from those census numbers, has a direct impact on how much federal funding you see in the state or the Panhandle,” says Kelley. “So it’s very important with the census coming up that people take the time to participate in that.”
The Census estimates show Kimball County as the only one to have an increase in population, up half a percent in 2018 from the previous year.
Cheyenne County was estimated to have had the largest loss on both a number and percentage basis, losing nearly 350 people… a 3.59% drop, from the 2017 estimated population of 9,657.
U.S Census Bureau Estimates 2017 vs. 2018
|Geography||Population Estimate – July 1, 2017||Population Estimate – July 1, 2018||Change, 2017 to 2018 – Number||Change, 2017 to 2018 – Percent |
|Box Butte County||10860||10772||-88||-0.81%|
|Scotts Bluff County||36213||35989||-224||-0.62%|
Source: U.S Census Bureau website