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Wisconsin's Slow Population Growth Means Problems for Economic Growth

Thursday, December 16th, 2021 -- 9:00 AM

(Bob Hague, WRN) A new report shows how Wisconsin’s slowing population growth means problems ahead for the state’s economic growth.

Dale Knapp with Forward Analytics, the research arm of the Wisconsin Counties Association, says the state’s population grew just three point-six percent over the past decade. A big reason, not enough young people moving here. “The 90s was the heyday of migration into the state, and we’ve really struggled since 2005, 2007 or so.”

Knapp says the state has been failing attract families with children. “The populations . . . probably 25 to 40. We . . . saw big net in-migration of that population historically. And that’s changed since about roughly 2010.”

Knapp says the challenge ahead will be to reverse that trend. The state’s 18 and under population, the future workforce, has declined, as more older workers are reaching retirement age.

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