The release of 2020 Census data has shown that, overall, the population of the United States has grown by 7.4% since 2010. The population of New Mexico, however, has only risen by about 2%.
Percentage increases across the country have “generally been declining each decade,” said Marc Perry, senior demographer at the U.S. Census Bureau’s Population Division, in a press conference Aug. 12.
“This past decade’s 7.4% increase was lower than the previous decade’s 9.7% increase and was, in fact, the second-lowest percent increase ever,” said Perry. “Only the 1930s had slower growth.”
Perry said that the declining population increases were “more pronounced at the county level,” and the data on East Mountains and Estancia Valley counties verifies that statement, part of a rural-to-urban population shift that took place across the country after 2008’s economic crash.
Torrance County continues to lose population. In 2010, the county was down 3% from the previous Census, while in 2020, the county was down by almost 6%. By contrast, Torrance County grew by 64% between 1990 and 2000, and grew by 37% in the decade preceding that.
The population of Bernalillo County grew by 2.5% in the past 10 years, but between 2000 and 2010, the county experienced a population increase of 19%. Likewise, Santa Fe County grew by 4.2% in the past decade, while the 2010 data show the county grew by 11.5%.
New Mexico will retain its three Congressional seats.
The number of New Mexicans identifying as Hispanic or Latino continues to grow. Over the past 10 years, that percentage has increased almost 6.5% across the state, while East Mountain counties remain nearly half Hispanic or Latino.
Sandoval County has the largest percentage of Native-identifying residents. As home to 12 Native American reservations, 11% of the county is made up of natives. According to the National Congress of American Indians, that makes Sandoval County the second most native-populated county in America, coming in after San Diego County in California.
The number of people in New Mexico not covered by health insurance, both statewide and nationwide, continues to decline. In 2010, the percentage of uninsured Americans was 17.7%, with uninsured New Mexicans making up 22.6% of the state’s population. The 2020 Census reports that the percentage of uninsured Americans is down to 9.5%, and the percentage of uninsured New Mexicans is down to 12%.
Despite recent economic woes, the poverty rate for New Mexico is down from nearly 20% in 2010 to 18.2% in 2020.
Bernalillo County’s percentage of residents in poverty decreased by 6%, and Torrance County decreased by 14%. Santa Fe County had an increase of residents in poverty of 1.6%. Overall, employment in the East Mountains and Estancia Valley is up roughly 3% from 2010, according to Census data.
Median household incomes have also shifted in the past 10 years. In 2010, the median household income for the country was $50,046, with New Mexico’s at $42,186. In 2020, that figure had risen to $62,834 for the national median, and $49,756 for the state median.
Bernalillo County’s median household income rose from $50,599 to $53,329 in the past decade; Santa Fe County’s rose from $57,469 to $61,200. Median household income in Torrance County fell slightly, from $36,347 to $36,120.
Census redistricting data, which will contain more in-depth demographic statistics from the 2020 census, will be released no later than Sept. 30, 2021, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Edgewood commissioners will be tasked with using that data to redistrict the town again in 2022.