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New Mexicans less educated, work less

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By Harold Morgon

The interim Economic and Rural Development Committee held its July meeting in Santa Rosa.
My concern here is the presentation by two esteemed observer-analysts of New Mexico, Adelamar Alcantara, who directs Geospatial and Population Studies at the University of New Mexico, and Jim Peach, economics professor at New Mexico State University.
We couldn’t find the meeting. Alcantara and Peach provided their presentation materials.
New Mexico’s population, as reported in the 2010 census, was Alcantara’s topic. Peach followed with a discussion of demographic trends and labor markets. Trust me, this stuff really is more interesting than watching paint dry.
One starting piece of news is that New Mexico’s percentage population growth fell behind the nation for the first time since the 1960s and only the second time since the 1910s. Fourteen counties lost population during the 2000s with eight losing people since 1930. Seven of those eight are in the northeast with Luna County the stray.
At 17 percent, Hidalgo led the population losers between 2000 and 2010. Overall, 63 percent of the 10-year population growth came from “natural increase,” more people being born than died.


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