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(The Center Square) - North Dakota's population is 779,261, a record high for the state according to the latest figures from the U.S. Census Bureau. 

The increase comes a year after the state experienced a steep population drop of more than 4,100 residents from 2020 to 2021. Gov. Doug Burgum attributed the decline to people moving out of the state. 

“North Dakota remains fortunate to have a strong natural rate (more births than deaths) while nearly half the states experienced a natural decline," Kevin Iverson, State Data Center manager at the North Dakota Department of Commerce said in a statement.

North Dakota has grown an estimated 16% since 2010, according to state officials. Idaho, Utah, Texas, Florida, Nevada and Colorado are the only states that have seen more growth. North Dakota is the 47th most populous state in the country. 

“Even with this population growth, we continue to face major workforce challenges, and we look forward to working with state lawmakers when they convene in January to make North Dakota even more attractive to families and workers, including supporting child care and eliminating income tax for the majority of North Dakotans," Burgum said in a statement. 

Burgum's proposed budget includes $167 million for workforce development that would fund grants and child care program. Lawmakers will consider the proposal when they return to Bismarck on Jan. 3. 

Associate Editor

Kim Jarrett's career spans over 30 years with stops in radio, print and television. She has won awards from both the Georgia Press Association and the Georgia Association of Broadcasters.