As detailed in recently released 2008 through 2010 American Community Survey (ACS) data, three of Louisiana’s ten-largest parishes – Caddo, Jefferson and East Baton Rouge – experienced net out-migration of population during the period.  As a percentage, the net loss of population among those who moved in or out was highest in Caddo Parish.  We have compiled a tabular report of these Census Bureau data (SEE LINK).

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Net population migration in the remaining seven parishes in the list of ten-largest was positive:  those moving into the parish of their then-current home outnumbered those moving out.  Given its continuing Katrina-related recovery, it is not surprising that Orleans Parish led in the percentage “net in-migration” category.  Orleans was followed by Calcasieu, Rapides, Livingston, Lafayette, St. Tammany and Ouachita parishes.

[Population gain or loss in a given place is the combination of its births, deaths and migration – moves into and out of that place.  This report is prepared, and the included data limited to, population migration.  Also, while 56% of Louisiana’s 2010 Census-reported population live in these ten largest parishes, not addressed in these data are migration statistics pertaining to the 44% of the state’s residents in the other 54 parishes.  Finally, while the in-migration of those from abroad is included, the out-migration of those residents is not, of course, i.e., those who move abroad are not subject to ACS questioning once they have left American states.

The ACS findings are not intended as “hard” or formally estimated counts of population, as are such Census Bureau reports as the decennial census and its Population Estimates annual reports.  Thus, ACS data may, or may not, match like data from other such Census Bureau surveys and reports.  The ACS is considered a qualitative study of characteristics of a population, with its extensive surveys conducted continuously, on a random basis, totaling some 2,000,000 final interviews each year.  The Census Bureau reports ACS data in one-, three- and five-year accumulations, and in order to increase the statistical accuracy of the data in this report, the 2008-2010 three-year accumulation is used.  Thus, as an example, Caddo Parish’s net loss of more than -4,200 residents to residential relocations away from Caddo, and out to other parishes or states, is most correctly stated as an accumulation of those relocations between 2008 and 2010.  Each of the three years’ recorded residential moves refers to activity in the year previous to the survey respondent’s completion of the ACS survey questionnaire.  More detail is found in the ACS General Handbook, available by cutting / pasting this link in the reader’s internet browser:]

Non-Movers and Moves Within the Same Parish

Most ACS respondents – more than 8 of 10 – did not relocate their residence during this data period, and another 1-in-10 moved locally, i.e., continued to live in the same parish.

International In-Migrants

In-migration of new residents from foreign countries into these ten Louisiana parishes totaled over 8,000 during the 2008-2010 period.  As noted in the explanatory comments above, this level of international in-migration is not reduced by an estimated incidence of those who moved out of Louisiana to a foreign country since those who moved out of the country are not surveyed after they leave.

Caddo Parish Population Drain Continues

Caddo Parish’s leading rate of net-negative population out-migration is no surprise, and neither is it new:  between the 1980 and 2010 censuses, Caddo’s population increased by only 2,611 people  – 1.0%.  In the three-year ACS data period analyzed here, Caddo lost -4,249 residents:  -1,677 in net out-migration to other parishes and -3,114 to other states, losses which were offset only slightly by a +542 gain from foreign in-migrants.

Although Caddo experiences the strong – and relatively unique – benefit of Haynesville Shale activity, recent reports have detailed how much higher property taxes are in Caddo than other parishes.  All governmental (taxing) entities within the parish – the City of Shreveport, Caddo Parish School Board, and non-school board Caddo Parish government – lead the state in their respective millage totals.

Adding to the known causes of population out-migration, the Louisiana State Department of Education (SDE) data, also previously reported, detail the very high number of Caddo public schools which are graded “D” and “F”.  At the other end of that SDE grading scale are the relatively high such “grades” among most schools in neighboring Bossier Parish.

[NOTE:  Though Bossier Parish is not among the ten-largest parishes – it’s population is 12th-ranked among Louisiana parishes – its net population migration is strongly positive:  Bossier Parish gained +2,248 residents:  +1,576 from parish-to-parish residential moves, +625 from state-to-state residential migration, and +47 from former residents of foreign countries.]

Orleans and St. Tammany Parish Gain at Jefferson Parish’s Expense?

The net migration number during the period for Orleans Parish is +6,620, with St. Tammany Parish a +1,641 net gainer.  Both parishes “win” a population increase from all categories – parish-to-parish, state-to-state, and from abroad.

At the same time, Jefferson Parish lost -2,161 residents.  More specifically, Jefferson suffered the largest parish-to-parish net loss of population registered among these ten parishes, -4,276.  That loss is partially offset by net population gains of +301 in state-to-state moves, and +1,814 from foreign residents moving in.

[NOTE:  Tangipahoa – not included in the table because it is 11th-ranked in parish population – is shown in the ACS data to have a net in-migration of +1,341 residents:  +605 from parish-to-parish moves, +494 from state-to-state and +242 moves into the parish from abroad.]

East Baton Rouge and Livingston

East Baton Rouge Parish experienced a net loss of -489, attributable to net losses both to other parishes, -2,289, and other states, -174, but mainly offset by a very favorable +1,974 net moves into EBR by foreign in-migrants.

Livingston’s net gain was +1,468:  +236, from other states +957, and from abroad +275.

[NOTE:  Ascension Parish is 14th-ranked in population, and thus not included in the tabular report.  It experienced a net population migration gain during the period of +1,026: a surprising -94 in parish-to-parish moves, +849 in state-to-state, and +271 from moves into the parish by foreigners.]

Lafayette, Rapides, Ouachita and Calcasieu

Calcasieu Parish’s net gain was +3,130:  +596 in parish-to-parish moves, +1,949 between Louisiana and another state, and +585 from those moving in from another country.

Lafayette Parish’s net gain from relocations during the period was +1,641:  +2,912 from parish-to-parish moves, -1,678 from those leaving to live in another state, and +407 from those who had been living abroad.

For Rapides Parish, the net gain was +2,088 during the period:  +1,788 in parish-to-parish moves, +25 in those between Louisiana and another state, and +275  from those who had been living in a foreign country.

Among Ouachita residents, a net +341 moved:  +864 in parish-to-parish migration, -731 in moves state-to-state, and +208 from those who had been living in another country.

Thank you for your interest, and your time in reading this information.

For the record, and as is always the case, this work has been done strictly in the public interest.  No compensation of any kind has been solicited, offered or accepted for this work.

Elliott Stonecipher

Evets Management Services, Inc.
6658 Youree Drive
Suite 180, #367
Shreveport, LA  71105
Phone:  318-424-1695