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Published March 25, 2011, 06:49 PM

Walsh County Sees 10 percent Drop in Population Since 2000

Walsh County has seen a 10 percent drop in population. The latest census numbers show 11,119 people live in the county down 2,721 from 2000. County and city officials are not trying to reverse that trend.

Not only the city of Grafton but Walsh County in general is seeing a decrease in residents.

"You never want to see your county lose people and apparently we are losing people. We just can't seem to get any big business in the county," said Walsh County Commissioner Ernie Barta.

Walsh County has seen a 10 percent drop in population. The latest census numbers show 11,119 people live in the county down 2,721 from 2000. One resident says he actually moved to Grafton to be closer to stores.

"I used to live in Gardner and Edinburg and you had to drive so far to get anything any where's like house hold wears and we usually had to drive to Grafton for groceries," said Grafton resident Eugene Skaro.

The city of Grafton's population is also down 5.1 percent from 2000. 4,284 people now live in the city, which Grafton Mayor Chris West says is actually better than he thought.

"We're at the baby boomer stage. We are going to have a lot of people retiring and new people coming in, so there are going to be opportunities available for younger adults to come in and take over," said West.

But for both West and Barta, bringing in more people to the area is the ultimate goal.

"We're going to break the trend a little bit, we are going to start going back up. We are looking at some economic development growth and some different things to bring back youth to the community," said West.

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