West's buttons popping
The 10 fastest growing states in the nation are in the West. According to federal Census Bureau figures, Nevada grew fastest in 1992-93, with a 3.9 percent growth rate, followed by Idaho at 3.1 percent and Colorado at 2.9 percent. Reid Reynolds, a Colorado state demographer, attributes the surge to strong economies in the West relative to the rest of the nation. In Colorado, 70,000 more people moved to the state than left in 1992-93, for the largest population increase since the oil boom in the 1970s. Reynolds estimates that nearly one-third of the new arrivals are Californians trying to escape their state's sluggish economy. "When California sneezes, we feel it," says Reynolds. Growth rates in other Western states were 2.7 percent for Utah and Arizona, 2.2 percent for New Mexico and Washington, 2.1 percent for Montana, 2.0 percent for Oregon, and 1.2 percent for Wyoming.