Douglas population tops 50,000

Douglas County's population crossed the 50,000 mark in July 2005, a 4.8 percent increase over the previous year's total of 47,803. The figures were released by the Nevada State Demographer Wednesday.

County Manager Dan Holler said the growth in population will increase the guaranteed portion Douglas County receives for sales and gas taxes, but the amounts haven't been determined.

"The county will receive an increase in its share of the State Consolidated Tax because of the growth in population and consumer price index, which will generate a larger share of guaranteed sales tax to the county," he said. "The county will also see an increase in part of the gas tax distributed."

Many formulas are used to determine tax distribution and in some cases, the growth rate is one of the factors considered. For example, the gas tax distribution is based on a formula designed to give counties with higher populations more weight, Holler said.

When considering the overall rate of growth, Douglas County is holding its own, at just under 2 percent of Nevada's total population, another factor used when dividing tax revenues, said Chuck Chinnock, director of the Nevada Department of Transportation.

"That portion could slip back in a county not experiencing enough of an increase," he said.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Nevada has been the fastest-growing state for 19 straight years.

Figures by the State Demographer indicate Nevada has grown by 108,102 persons, or 4.5 percent since July of 2004.

The numbers indicate rural Nevada is reversing the downturn experienced earlier this decade, but Nevada's growth is unevenly distributed, the majority in Southern Nevada.

Clark County has grown 4.5 percent, or about 81,000 from July of 2004 to July of 2005. Esmeralda County's population grew 8.5 percent, but that meant only another 100 people, from 1,176 to 1,276.

Neighboring Lyon County has seen a boom over the past year with an increase of 9.2 percent, or 2,400, bringing the county's total to 48,860. Carson City's population increased by 1.7 percent over the past two years and now stands at 57,104.

Compiled by the state demographer's office, these numbers must be certified by the governor's office before they can be used, Chinnock said.

Susie Vasquez can be reached at or 782-5121, ext. 211.


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