The Sentinel reports that the latest census estimates are in -- and Oneida County continues to lose population. Utica lost 1,569 people since year 2000, or about 2.6% of its population, leaving 59,082 remaining. Rome lost 730, or about 2.1%, leaving 34,220 behind. The county as a whole lost 1,515 people, to stand at 233,954.
Actually we may not be so bad - or is this just a case of misery loving company?
The Post Standard reports that Syracuse dropped 5,777, or about 4% of its population, leaving 140,658.
Per the Buffalo News, Buffalo lost a whopping 16,500 people, or 5.7%, since 2000. It's population is now only 276,059. (Remember when it had 586,000 people back in the 1960s? It is now less that half of what it was.) Niagara Falls, which used to run neck and neck with Utica in population, lost 5.9%, to stand at 52,326.
These are all huge losses, and they continue a trend that has lasted more than a generation. They reflect serious flaws in State policies over the last 30 years.
Yet in Oneida County -- and in the other areas as well --the public infrastructure continues to expand into undeveloped land: a new school for BOCES, a new school wing in New Hartford, proposals to extend water lines further and further away from urban centers -- and now leaders are even talking about developing the area around the Westmoreland Thruway interchange. Government also continues to expand, cloning itself. The water and the solid waste authorities come immediately to mind, requiring their own employees where some were formerly shared with their prior "owners" (the City and the County).
One has to ask WHY? Why do we need more "things," and why do we need more government layers, when our population is dwindling. We also must ask HOW WILL WE PAY FOR THIS?