County population growth Area shows 13% increase since ’90 |

County population growth Area shows 13% increase since ’90

Nevada County’s population grew more than 13 percent to nearly 90,000 between 1990 and 1996, according to federal estimates released last week.

On July 1, 1996, the county was home to 89,016 people, the U.S. Census Bureau estimated. The 1990 census counted 78,510 people in Nevada County.

The county’s 1990-96 growth rate of 13.4 percent compares to an overall state increase of 7.1 percent, the Census Bureau reported.

The California Department of Finance, which provides semiannual county population estimates, last pegged Nevada County’s population at 87,000 in January 1996.

The Census Bureau numbers surprised Pat Norman, a Nevada County planner who tracks population growth.

“If we’re going up 2,000 in six months, that’s a little surprising, because I’m not aware that we’ve seen that kind of building activity,” Norman said this morning.

According to the Finance Department, Nevada County’s population went up 1.2 percent between January 1995 and January 1996.

Neither agency distinguishes between population trends in western Nevada County and the Truckee area, where building activity has been faster since the beginning of the decade.

The Census Bureau numbers are generally considered more reliable than the Finance Department’s semiannual estimates, according to the Sierra Economic Development District, which compiles figures on population and the economy.

According to the Census Bureau, neighboring Placer County was among the state’s fastest growing regions with a six-year growth rate of 23.54 percent.

Sierra County grew 2.7 percent in the same period, the Census Bureau said.

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