Arkansas' population attracted to the north
Benton County had the state's largest population increase — 2.6% — between July 2020 and July 2021.
- More than 293,000 people lived in Benton County this time last year.
Driving the news: New U.S. Census Bureau population estimates were recently released, providing county-by-county information.
Why it matters: Recruiting and retaining people is an important factor in an area's economic success.
- Fewer people have been living in eastern and southeastern Arkansas for several decades. This results in a trend of fewer jobs, lower tax collections and reduced educational opportunities, all of which can be challenging for a rural area to reverse.
By the numbers: Both Madison and Izard counties grew by 2.5%.
- Washington County's population was up only 1.4% during the one-year period to about 250,000 residents.
- Phillips County, in east-central Arkansas, had the sharpest decline of 3.3%, but its northern neighbor Lee County grew by 1.1%
Go deeper: See an interactive version of the map.
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