60 Million Californians? Maybe Not

<p>Despite estimates that the state of California's population will grow to 60 million by 2050, Wendell Cox argues that growth in the state is slowing.</p>
September 6, 2007, 11am PDT | Nate Berg
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"The California Department of Finance issued a projection that the state population will grow from 36.5 million in 2006 to 60 million in 2050. Los Angeles County is projected to grow from just under 10 million to 13 million, while San Diego County, just under 3 million today, is projected to reach 4.5 million."

"Frankly, there is good reason to doubt that will happen. What seems to be escaping everyone in California is that fundamental and very recent migration changes do not auger well for population growth, especially in the state's more established areas."

"Despite this inland growth, California suffered a net outward domestic migration of more than 900,000 people during 2000-06."

"What is going on? Try housing affordability. In the three large coastal metropolitan areas, median home prices have exploded to more than 10 times median household incomes. Historically, this "median multiple" has been 3.0 or less and remains so in many parts of the United States. People have moved inland to take advantage of lower housing costs. But now housing costs are escalating substantially inland and, not surprisingly, growth has slowed."

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Published on Friday, August 24, 2007 in Orange County Register
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