The census bureau has sent its 2010 population data to state lawmakers starting to draw new congressional districts one day before the committee’s first public hearing–in Springfield.
The figures show Christian County is the fastest-growing county in Missouri, with a population jump of more than 42% in the last decade. Lincoln County was second at 35% and Warren County had the third-fastest growth race, 32.57%. Taney County was the only county to grow by 30% or more. at least six other counties have grown by 20-30% in the last decade.
The biggest loser, however, is northwest Missouri’s Atchison County, which lost 11.59% of its population. Many counties across north Missouri continued to lose people. Carroll’s population is down 8.6%. Holt County is down by 8.2% while Chariton, Sullivan, and Linn Counties posted population losses of seven to eight percent.
The shift in population in the last decade is seen in the current figures for congressional districts. ten years ago, the population was within bounds of quality established by the census bureau. The new figures continue to show the first congressional district, St. Louis, continues to lose population. The second district that includes the collar counties around the city of St. Louis, are now the third-largest district.
The shift of population to the southwest is underlined by the new population of southwest Missouri. that district is now Missouri’s largest district. The smallest district, the third, covers an area of south St. Louis and south of the city.
The figures drawn from the 2010 census from the House co-chairman of the redistricting committee, Representative John Diehl, are:
- District 1 – 587,069
- District 2 – 706,622
- District 3 – 625,251
- District 4 – 679,375
- District 5 – 633,887
- District 6 – 693,974
- District 7 – 721,754
- District 8 – 656,894
- District 9 – 684,101
With the loss of one of Missouri’s congressional districts, Diehl said the target population for the eight new congressional districts will be 748,615. Ten years ago, the nine districts had about 620,000 people. Diehl’s figures for 2010 represent a population increase of the eight remaining districts of about 20%.
The committee has to have new congressional district maps drawn and approved by the legislature before adjournment in Mid-May.