COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM/WXTX) –
, Columbus has been named the most shrinking city in America. Most cities on the list are there because of the dwindling manufacturing industry.
Columbus is not affected by a rural demographic shift or job layoffs, but because of changing military assignments.
According to the United States 2013 Census, Columbus has a population of 202,824, which is the second largest city in the state of Georgia.
More than 25,000 Armor School Troops and their families have relocated to Fort Benning, but this population boost was not as large as expected and is one of the main reasons for a declining population in the Columbus area.
Columbus went from a growing city last year to a shrinking city this year, with a 1.5 percent population decrease. Fort Benning, The Muscogee County School District, and TSYS are the top employers in the Columbus area.
According to April 2015 numbers from the
, the unemployment rate in Georgia is 6.3 percent, and 6.7 percent in the River Valley area.
News Leader 9 reached out to Mayor Tomlinson concerning this report and this is what she had to say:
"The Yahoo list of 15 Fastest-Shrinking Cities is utterly absurd. Columbus, Georgia has grown 6 percent in population since the 2010 census, twice the growth rate for the state of Georgia, which is at 3 percent for the same time period. The annual census data has fluctuations due to assessment variables, but there is no question that Columbus, Georgia has grown since the 2010 census. Any reduction in population due to the Draw Down of the war in the Middle East is not expected to offset the increase of population resulting from BRAC. The Yahoo list is completely irresponsible."