(03/19/2011)
By Bob Weaver

The U.S. Census Bureau will be releasing figures for West Virginia next week.

The latest numbers will show population shifts statewide, and within cities and counties from 2000 to 2010.

The figures will also show data on race, origin and voting age.

State lawmakers will use the data to redraw districts for the U.S. House, the House of Delegates and the state Senate, and county voting districts will also be realigned.

Calhoun's current census is estimated at 7,119, and Grantsville's census is estimated at 565.

The new numbers could drop the county census under 7,000 and the Grantsville census under 500.

Calhoun's census peaked in 1940 at the end of the agricultural era at 12,455, with Grantsville once having a population of 1,200.

Researchers are predicting the Calhoun County census will continue to drop for the next 35 years.

People in America will continue to cluster around crowded urban and suburban areas to work and live.

Calhoun has plenty of company with projected population decline.

While population decline can be linked to less resources for community services, there could be good news in that the county continues to be a peaceful retreat from the maddening crowd.

Furthermore, it is likely to retain its low tax base, unless consolidation takes it over.

POPULATION PROJECTIONS

Calhoun County 7,581(2000) 7,251(2005) 7,187(2010) 7,124(2015) 7,024(2020) 6,910(2025) 6,780(2030) 6,640(2035)

Roane County 15,458(2000) 15,333(2005) 15,063(2010) 14,974(2015) 14,818(2020) 14,608(2025) 14,346(2030) 14,060(2035)

Clay County 10,315(2000) 10,138(2005) 10,035(2010) 9,926(2015) 9,780(2020)9,622(2025) 9,452(2030) 9,268(2035)

Gilmer County 7,169(2000) 6,926 (2005) 6,839(2010) 6,741(2015) 6,605(2020) 6,396(2025) 6,135(2030) 5,859(2025)

Wirt County 5,881(2000) 5,777(2005) 5,745(2010) 5,833(2015) 5,908(2020) 5,946(2025) 5,951(2030) 5,950(2035)

Ritchie County 10,335(2000) 10,318(2005) 10,303(2010) 10,307(2015) 10,298(2020) 10,274(2025) 10,208(2030) 10,103(2035)

West Virginia will see a gain in population, according to the projection.

West Virginia 1,806,977(2000), 1,804,020(2005) 1,822,813(2010) 1,843,767(2015) 1,863,082(2020) 1,880,525(2025) 1,893,761(2030)1,903,882(2035).

Sources: Projection comes from the Bureau of Business and Economic Research, West Virginia University, September 2009, Estimates come from the US Census Bureau Annual Estimates of Population for Counties, March 2009.


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