Idaho was among the fastest -growing states in the U.S. between mid-2015 and mid-2016, resuming a trend of more than two decades of population growth above the national average.
Utah and Nevada led the nation in percentage growth year-to-year, adding 2 percent to each of their populations. Idaho, Florida and Washington came in just after them at 1.8 percent, according to census data distributed by the Idaho Department of Labor.
Census estimates suggest Idaho gained more than 30,300 new residents over the year, says Labor, for a total population of 1,683,140.
Where’d they come from? Nearly 19,000 people moved to Idaho in that time from other states and countries, Labor reports. And this state had the seventh-highest birth rate in the nation at 13.7 births per thousand women. Those two factors covered more than 90 percent of the year-to-year change.
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By raw numbers, of course, we’re still among the smallest American states. While sharing our growth rate, Florida is the third-most-populous state with an estimated 20.6 million residents in mid-2016.
Idaho has grown at a rate above the national average for years, hitting more than 1 percent growth from 1990 to 2010, according to Labor. In the mid-2000s it often reached more than 2 percent growth. But the recession slowed that momentum, with Idaho growth in 2012 matching the national average of .7 percent.
These new figures are Idaho’s highest percentage year-to-year growth since 2008, when 29,200 residents drove up the population 1.9 percent.
Eight states lost population over the last year, including another of Idaho’s neighbors: Wyoming.