Thursday, March 19, 2009
In 2008 Allegheny lost .3% of its population and since the 2000 census, the population has dropped 5.2%. The data shows all of the growth in the county was due to international in migration, which saw a net gain of 1,500 residents. There was a net domestic out migration of 3,600 residents in the same time period. Pennsylvania State Data Center Director Sue Copella says the problematic population drain for Allegheny County is its difference in birth and death rate. Since 2000 deaths have outpaced births by 11,640. The total population change for Allegheny County was -48,373. Copella says the population numbers are not directly related to the regions economy. She says where one should look for clues on the health of the region is in its migration data. Copella says as she looks at the numbers for the county and the region she sees what looks like ski slop: A steep decline followed by a hallowing of the curve. She says it may not be long before the population numbers reverse. One county in the region that has seen growth is Butler County. Since 2000 it has grown by 5.1 percent. The Pittsburgh metro area saw a .1% decline in 2008 to settle at 2,351,192. The Johnstown area fell .5% to 144,319. The state as a whole grew by 1.4%. Allegheny County is now the 30th largest in the nation.