Michigan population rises for fifth straight year

Christine MacDonald
The Detroit News

Michigan’s population increased for the fifth straight year in 2016, but its growth was dwarfed by southern and western states.

U.S. Census data released Tuesday estimated the state gained 10,585 residents, increasing 0.1 percent to 9,928,300 as of July. The increases were small compared to states including Texas, which gained 432,957 residents, Florida (367,525) and California (256,077).

Michigan remained the 10th most populous state in 2016. North Carolina bypassed Michigan in 2014 to become the nation's ninth largest by population. Utah was the fastest growing, with its population increasing 2 percent in 2016 to an estimated 3,051,217 million

Michigan’s increase was larger than last year. The state gained 1,948 residents in 2015, increasing 0.02 percent.

Nationally, the U.S. population grew by 0.7 percent to 323.1 million.

The gains likely won’t be enough to prevent it from losing a congressional seat after the 2020 census.

Under the population data released Tuesday, Michigan would lose one of its 14 congressional seats after the next comprehensive national census in 2020, according to an online apportionment tool from the University of Michigan Population Studies Center.

Michigan lost one seat after the 2000 census; two after 1990 and one seat after 1980. According to the latest estimates, Florida, North Carolina, Oregon and Texas would gain seats, while Michigan, Illinois, Minnesota and Pennsylvania would lose.

Two neighboring states had large losses, including Pennsylvania (-7,677) and Illinois (-37,508), which saw the largest decrease in the nation. Most other neighbors saw gains, Ohio (9,283), Wisconsin (10,817), Indiana (20,285) and Iowa (12,696.)

In 2014, the census estimated Michigan gained 16,785 residents, a nearly 0.2 percent increase.

The state’s population bottomed out in 2011, with a loss of about 1,282 residents from the previous year. In 2012, it gained 11,025, and in 2013, it grew by 11,744.