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2008 Population Estimates


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The Census Bureau has released latest county, metro, and CSA estimates.

Growth numbers slightly less than the previous year but no big changes in growth rates. I didn't list them, but most of the smaller counties in SC lost population. Small changes but SC continues to become more urban. Largest increase in Greenville, Horry, and York. I wonder if growth has slowed in Horry since July 2008? Still strong from 2007-2008.

County 2008 2007 2006

Greenville 438,119 427,428 415,675

Richland 364,001 358,020 350,847

Charleston 348,046 343,522 340,625

Spartanburg 280,738 275,285 269,546

Horry 257,380 249,711 239,496

Lexington 248,518 242,797 237,957

York 217,448 208,564 198,209

Anderson 182,825 179,964 176,958

Berkeley 169,327 163,555 158,382

Aiken 154,071 152,333 150,125

Beaufort 150,415 146,722 143,091

Florence 132,800 131,731 130,751

Dorchester 127,133 123,357 117,635

Pickens 116,915 115,606 114,464

Sumter 104,148 104,008 104,101

Same story with Metro growth. No particular changes to note.

Metro areas

Columbia 728,063 715,678 702,914

Charleston-No. Char-Summerville 644,506 630,434 616,642

Greenville-Mauldin-Easley 624,715 612,567 599,509

Spartanburg 280,738 275,285 269,546

Myrtle Beach-N.M.B-Conway 257,380 249,711 239,496

Florence 199,831 198,537 197,601

Anderson 182,825 179,964 176,958

Sumter 104,148 104,008 104,101

Augusta-Richmond County 534,218 528,312 522,072

Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord 1,701,799 1,646,431 1,580,070

I didn't see listings for Charleston or Augusta CSAs.

Combined Statistical Areas

Greenville-Spartanburg-Anderson 1,241,618 1,220,198 1,197,706

Columbia-Newberry 765,886 753,277 740,212

Myrtle Beach-Conway-Georgetown 318,111 310,099 299,408

Charlotte-Gastonia-Salisbury 2,338,289 2,270,787 2,192,568

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Some additional info from the census press release.

Raleigh was the fastest growing metro in the country from 2007 to 2008. Austin TX was second. Raleigh grew 4.3% and Austin 3.8 %. 47 of the 50 fastest growing metros were in the South or West. Also 94 of the 100 fastest growing counties were in the South (71) or West (23.) And 45 of the 100 fastest growing counties were in Texas, Georgia, or North Carolina.

Metro growth rankings of interest.

Charlotte was 7th (3.4%)

Myrtle Beach 12th (3.1%)

Charleston 35th (2.2%)

Greenville 47th (2.0%)

Spartanburg 48th (2.0%)

Columbia 65th (1.7%)

Anderson 81st (1.6%)

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Population gains of those metros of interest:

Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord 55,368

Charleston-North Charleston-Summerville 14,072

Columbia 12,385

Greenville-Mauldin-Easley 12,148

Myrtle Beach-North Myrtle Beach-Conway 7,669

Spartanburg 5,453

Anderson 2,861

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My math shows, if growth trends from 2006-2008 continue through to 2010, that SC-7 is the 432nd House seat awarded after reapportionment. Obviously estimates are just that, and don't count chickens etc etc etc, but the odds are at least favorable for SC to win a new House seat after the Census. Which is interesting.

What would the map look like with seven districts? Clyburn's district has lost population across the decade; assuming we still plan to maintain a majority-minority district, the others are going to really have to be wedged in there--or Clyburn's district will be drawn 50.1% minority. Could be interesting. For my money I've always thought congressional district lines should follow county lines as much as possible, but that seems difficult if not impossible to manage given the losses in population in the majority-minority counties.

SC last had 7 districts in the 1920s.

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I've heard that South Carolina might gain a set in Congress too. I think that there's a good chance it will happen. The majority-minority district is forced gerrymandering by the VRA, so we'll definitely have another one. Its my understanding that they have to distribute the population evenly thought the districts, so it will really depend on where the most population growth has been occurring. My guess is that the district might wedge itself in the Upstate somehow.

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Depending on how the counts go, it could come down to a battle between Utah and SC. It should be interesting to note that the price extracted out of the democrats for giving a real congressional seat to DC was that a seat would be added to a very red state. In this case they said it would Utah. If you remember NC beat out Utah by a little less than 600 residents which cause Utah to sue to stop it. They did not prevail.

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^This time Utah's fourth seat is very secure (and there's little or no hope of a fifth for them). By my estimate (which is certainly not the only way to do it or even the best way), seats 431-435 are NY-28, SC-7, CA-53, OR-6, and TX-36. That would be Texas' fourth new seat. NY-28 is one less than they have now; Ohio would be the only state losing two seats. Its interesting that if my estimates hold this would be the first time ever California doesn't gain a seat. The way Congress does the apportionment is like a reduction of squares or some such, I don't know the correct name (I have Excel do the math for me), by the time you get up to 50+ seats it's tough to add any more if any other states are growing.

Those seats 431-435 are definitely up for grabs. The next five seats after them (thus the most likely to replace one of them) are NC-14 (plus 1 for NC), WA-10 (+1), MN-8 (they hold instead of losing one), MO-8 (hold instead of a loss), and IL-19 (hold instead of a loss). MT-2 is lingering down there, too.

You'll note that the DC district bill has yet to pass, even in a heavily Democratic Congress. It may not even be constitutional. Utah will have to wait until 2012 to get their fourth (and Nevada will get one at the same time. I bet that chaps Utah's hide).

I've gamed out a couple potential scenarios, and as much as I would like to see it it's tough to imagine wedging a new seat into the Upstate. I think the easiest way to go about it is to create a new district centered on Horry County, and including Georgetown and most of Florence, but I had to give it all of Berkeley County, too. I put Beaufort in with Charleston.

Of course, the way the politicians do it is they start with the home of every incumbent and draw districts around those, which I don't care for. It will be interesting to see what happens if we get another, though.

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  • 3 months later...

The municipal estimates for 2008.....Growth/Loss compared to 2007....

1. Columbia............127,029 (+1,816)

2. Charleston..........111,978 (+1,440)

4. N. Charleston........94,407 (+3,085)

3. Rock Hill...............67,339 (+2,497)

4. Mount Pleasant......65,472 (+762)

5. Greenville.............59,988 (+1,073)

6. Summerville.........45,193 (+1,354)

7. Spartanburg..........39,584 (+764)

8. Sumter.................38,625 (-210)

9. Goose Creek.........37,900 (+1,445)

10. Hilton Head..........33,913 (-67)

11. Florence..............31,570 (+64)

12. Myrtle Beach.......30,596 (+710)

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