2020 Census: Population increases in Tennessee and Arkansas, declines in Mississippi

Mississippi losing residents according to census

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The federal government released the first batch of 2020 Census data Monday.

It shows the population increased in Tennessee and Arkansas. But Mississippi’s population declined by about 6,000 people.

Overall, the U.S. population grew at the slowest pace since the 1930s. In general, states in the South and West grew at faster rates.

Tennessee added about 564,000 residents since the last census in 2010. The state’s population now stands at 6.9 million.

Tim Kuhn, the director of the Tennessee State Data Center, says Tennessee’s growth slowed slightly compared to the prior two decades, but it’s still impressive.

“The fact that Tennessee is still growing along at a clip of 8.9 percent says a lot about our attractiveness as a state and some of the underlying fundamentals that still draw people to this part of the country,” said Kuhn.

Arkansas also grew, adding 95,000 people. Its population now stands over 3,000,000.

But Mississippi is one of three states that experienced a decline in population.

The census shows 6,000 fewer people live in the Magnolia State than a decade ago.

The State Data Center (SDC) of Mississippi says the population loss could result in an $18 million to $30 million decrease in federal funding.

“As the only southern local to lose population, the impacts in federal funding are clear. But there are also significant implications for workforce development, infrastructure development, tax revenue and education,” SDC staff members wrote in a news release.

Mississippi is becoming more diverse. The state lost about 48,000 white residents but gained 20,000 Blacks, 16,000 Hispanics, and 4,000 Asians.

Economists say it’s too early to draw conclusions. They’ll know more when the census releases more data later this year.

The Census also determines how many representatives each state can have in Congress. All three Mid-South states will retain their current number of seats.

For more information about the census count, click here.

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