Recent U.S. Census Bureau data reveals Michigan continues to struggle in its attempts to maintain a population above 10 million residents.

At the same time, the Great Lakes State is witnessing an increase in poverty rates. More than half (49) of the state’s 83 counties experienced an increase in poverty in 2022. Michigan is currently ranked 13th in the nation for poverty.

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USCB data released Tuesday shows that Michigan is still in the Top 10 most populated states, despite gaining less than 4,000 residents since July 2022. The current population as of July 2023 is 10,037,261, which is still 40,413 residents below Michigan’s population in July 2021.

Although the USCB reports the U.S. population grew by only 0.5% between July 2022 and July 2023, it also noted that the “national population growth is still historically low” at 1.6 million, compared to a 0.4% increase in 2022 and a 0.2% increase in 2021. The U.S. population is slightly below 335 million.

“U.S. migration returning to pre-pandemic levels and a drop in deaths are driving the nation’s growth,” Kristie Wilder, a demographer in the Population Division at the USCB, said in a statement. “Although births declined, this was tempered by the near 9% decrease in deaths. Ultimately, fewer deaths paired with rebounding immigration resulted in the nation experiencing its largest population gain since 2018.”

Texas (+474K), Florida (+365K), North Carolina (+140K), Georgia (+116K), and South Carolina (+91K) were the top five states experiencing population growth.

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USCB data released last week revealed poverty in Michigan ticked upward to 13.3% from 13% the previous year. The national poverty rate is 12.6%.

However, James Hohman, fiscal policy director at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, notes Michigan’s poverty rates are better measured by the American Community Survey, which places the state’s poverty rate at 13.4%.

“Michigan’s economy has fallen behind,” he continued. “You can see this in the poverty statistics, but employment has lagged the nation, and population has, too. Gov. Whitmer’s response has been to shower select companies with billions of taxpayer dollars, and this is a bad strategy. It is ineffective at improving economic trends, unfair to other businesses, and expensive to taxpayers. The governor should work to create a better business climate for everyone rather than offer favors to a few.”

Hohman identified several of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s projects that he specifically considers wasteful, including her recent proposal to allocate $25 million of taxpayer dollars to provide rebates to residents purchasing a new vehicle in Michigan and massive giveaways to electric vehicle manufacturers.

Last week, Whitmer’s Growing Michigan Together Council released its assessment of the state’s population loss and recommendations to curtail it.

Michigan Rep. Mike Harris, R-Waterford, said the proposals would require raising taxes, which, in turn, would deter inbound migration to the state.