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Beltrami growth contrast to surrounding counties

BEMIDJI – The latest estimates released by the U.S. Census show Beltrami County continued to grow in population since the last count.

Meanwhile, nearby counties – Cass, Clearwater and Hubbard – were stagnant or contracted. And Itasca County, which is nearly identical in population, barely grew from April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012. Itasca also now trails Beltrami in population, a turnabout from the Census Bureau’s 2010 figures.

For Beltrami County, births essentially doubled the number of deaths during the two-year stretch, with the county’s population swelling with 1,567 births. There were 789 deaths.

But migration patterns suggest some fluctuations. In the two years estimated by the Census, there was a net of 157 people who migrated into Beltrami County. That’s despite a net loss of 240 people to domestic locations in the 12 months ending July 1, 2012.

Overall, Beltrami County’s population rose from 44,442 in 2010 to an estimated 45,375 last year, representing a 2.1 percent increase.

By contrast, Cass County’s population lost an estimated net of 210 people (0.7 percent decline), Hubbard County declined a net of 81 people (0.4 percent) and Clearwater County gained a net of eight people (0.1 percent increase).

The latest Census estimations also show Beltrami County surpass Itasca County in population. The Census reported Itasca County, with Grand Rapids as its hub, had 45,221 people last year, a net increase of 163 from 2010.

Steve Wagner

Grand Forks Herald Editor Steve Wagner can be reached at 701.780.1104 and He joined the Herald in April 2013, and previously worked as editor at the Bemidji (Minn.) Pioneer and in several roles -- including news director, investigative reporter and crime reporter - at The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead. His reporting experience includes coverage of Dru Sjodin's disappearance and the federal death penalty case for her murderer, Alfonso Rodriguez Jr., along with several investigative projects. In his spare time, Wagner is an avid runner and occasionally writes about his experiences on his blog, Addicted to Running.

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