fbpx

Latest Posts

Home

Facebook

Twitter

Search
About

Can policy do anything about Minnesota’s below average population growth?

In our recent report Minnesota’s Workforce to 2050, we looked at the causes, consequences, and possible partial remedies for a labor force which is growing more slowly than in the past. An article in the Star Tribune last weekend – ‘Life in the 2020s: Slower growth will be the new normal in Minnesota‘ – covered similar ground.

It noted that “Minnesota’s population will grow more slowly than ever in the 2020s”. Indeed, this is a nationwide phenomenon; the article also observed that “The U.S. population is expected to grow 6.6% in the 2020s, a slide from 7.5% growth this decade” – a fall of 0.9 percentage points. But the situation is worse in Minnesota. Here, “State demographers forecast 5% growth in the 2020s…That’s down from 7.2% growth in the 2010s” – a fall of 1.2 percentage points.

Minnesota has some handicaps in this race.

Since the start of the 20th century, Minnesota’s population grew at a faster rate than the nation’s in only one decade — the 1930s. Long winters dampen the state’s appeal to people from elsewhere in the U.S. Its distance from the coasts has meant relatively fewer immigrants.

You might add underperforming sports teams to that list of ‘push factors’.

This makes it imperative that, where we can, we use public policy tools to attract, from an economic point of view, productive workers here and retain those we do have. Current Minnesota state policy is not likely to help. In 2016, we reported that Minnesotans were on the move to lower tax states. As the Tax Foundation noted last year, Minnesota’s taxes only serve to compound the push factors of climate and location. And evidence shows that those high taxes are not the price we pay for living in an awesome state.

An intensively employed productive workforce is vital to our state’s continued prosperity. Where Minnesota’s climate and location work against this, public policy has to work even harder to attract and retain productive workers and citizens. Our high taxes are an obstacle to that. We have no idea how to help with the sports teams though.

John Phelan is an economist at the Center of the American Experiment. 

Comments

Subscribe

Categories

Upcoming Events

  • Morning in Minnesota Breakfast Series: Winona

    Location: Signatures Restaurant, 22852 County Road 17, Winona, MN 55987

    Please join Center of the American Experiment Friday, March 6 at Signatures for a FREE breakfast with economist John Phelan.

    Register Now
  • Lunch Forum with Amity Shlaes

    Location: Hyatt Regency Minneapolis 1300 Nicollet Mall Minneapolis, MN 55403

    Buy tickets HERE. About This Event: Enjoy our Early Bird Ticket Special through February 23rd! After this date, ticket price will increase to $30. Doors open at 11:30 AM, program and lunch begin at Noon. In Great Society, the New York Times bestselling author of The Forgotten Man and Coolidgeoffers a stunning revision of our last great period of idealism, the 1960s, with burning relevance for our contemporary challenges. Today, a battle rages in our country. Many Americans are attracted to socialism and economic redistribution while opponents of those ideas argue for purer capitalism. In the 1960s, Americans sought the…

    Register Now
  • 2020 Annual Dinner Featuring Sarah Huckabee Sanders

    Location: Minneapolis Convention Center Ballroom 1301 2nd Ave S Minneapolis, MN 55403

    American President: The Unorthodox Approach to Politics that Changed the World. Sarah Huckabee Sanders served as White House Press Secretary for President Donald J. Trump from 2017 to 2019. A trusted confidant of the President, Sanders advised him on everything from press and communications strategy to personnel and policy. For two and a half years, Sanders was at the President’s side, battling with the media, working with lawmakers and CEOs, and staffing the President on every foreign trip, including dozens of meetings with foreign leaders. Sanders is only the third woman and the first mother to hold the job of…

    Register Now