State Demographer Ken Darga reports that the most recent population estimates are out -- showing changes among the states from 2010 to 2011. The news for Michigan will play negatively.
The state lost 7,400 people in the period, about the equivalent of the city of Houghton.
Michigan was one of only three states (Rhode Island and Maine the others) to shrink in the period -- and had the largest loss in raw numbers.
By contrast, Texas and California combined to add nearly 1 million people in the time period.
OK. But, for all intents and purposes, Michigan is essentially the same state it was in 2000, with almost 9.9 million calling Michigan home.
As I recall, the mood was fairly in optimistic in 2000 -- and certainly more optimistic than you hear from many these days. Is staying the same size an indictment of Michigan's future?
I don't think so. The truly worrisome numbers involve money, not people.
In 2000, the per capita income in Michigan was $29,397. The national average then was $30,318.
In 2010, the number in Michigan was $35,624. The national average was $40,504.
In 2010, 17 states and the District of Columbia had higher per-capita averages. In 2010, 34 states and DC had higher averages.
Figuring out how to improve the incomes of the people who stay in Michigan, not any overall head counts, is THE issue for the next five years.
The state of Michigan maintains an impressive array of charts and figures here. Take some time and look them over.