We received some confirmation on what most of us have known for some time – Carlsbad and Eddy County are booming.
According to a presentation made during a state redistricting meeting Thursday, Eddy County experienced the state’s highest growth rate between 2010 and 2020 with a population change of 15.8 percent. The data indicates that we added 8,485 people over the decade and now have a total population of 62,314. Most 2020 Census data was uploaded on Thursday.
We know there is strong evidence indicating that the total number of people here is usually quite a bit higher – due to a large oil and gas workforce and the fact that oil prices bottomed out when the U.S. Census was completed last spring. However, the 2020 Census numbers for Eddy County still show a strong growth that will help in terms of attracting new businesses and adding political representation.
Lea County showed the state’s second highest growth rate with 15%. In other words, the two counties in New Mexico with the highest population growth are in Southeastern New Mexico.
We were extremely disappointed in the Census total specific to the City of Carlsbad, which now listed a population of 32,238, up from around 27,000 in 2010. We are looking into this further, but believe some of the Census’ designations (such as North Carlsbad) weren’t included in our city total, but are part of the greater Carlsbad area. Basically, we have a high number of people who live and work in south Eddy County, but who didn’t count toward our City total.
Nevertheless, the data from the Census 2020 shows a lot of positive about our community. Eddy County’s nearly 16% growth rate shows that we are moving up. New Mexico as a whole only showed a growth of 2.8%, with most of that coming from the metro area and southeastern New Mexico.
Thank you to the City and County Census committees for all of their hard work. Eddie Rodriguez was the City’s chair, while Deanna Taylor helped with getting word out. Wes Hooper, John Waters led the county’s efforts. Many, many other individuals worked very hard on Census outreach.
Now, it’s time for these numbers to be put into play. With Eddy and Lea County recording the two highest rates of growth in the state, the state’s redistricting effort must fairly adapt to this significant shift in population. We will pay close attention to redistricting efforts to make certain this part of the state receives fair attention when the new senate and house lines are drawn.
Additionally, we encourage representatives and senators in other parts of the state to note where the population growth has taken place in New Mexico over the past ten years – it is in the area with lots of good energy industry jobs. Twenty of the state’s counties lost population over the past 10 years.
Finally, we encourage businesses and industry to take a good look at our area – Carlsbad and Eddy County are growing.
Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway