COBLES — Population growth in the Colorado County region is outpacing the region’s population as the county population continues to grow, and some counties are seeing the highest increases in population in the state, according to a new state report.
The state Bureau of Census has said it expects the county to grow by 765,000 people by 2030.
In the past two years, population in Colorado County has grown by 623,000, or about 6 percent.
County officials expect the county’s population to grow from 9.6 million in 2020 to 10.9 million in 2030.
County residents, who account for a large share of the county workforce, are expected to continue to see an increase in their wages and benefits over the next decade, as well as an increase on medical care.
However, as the population grows, so do the costs, the bureau said.
The county has not released its budget projections, but the report says the county is projecting an average increase of $14,500 in property taxes each year through 2023, and an average annual cost of $18,000 per person.
The report says about $2 billion of the $4 billion expected increase in property tax revenue will come from the population growth, and the rest from the county budget.
County commissioners say the county has grown in size because of the growth in population and is now responsible for more than half of the Colorado state population.
It’s estimated that by 2040, the county will have about 1.5 million residents.
But the report also said there are still many people who will continue to be able to live in rural areas, and that some rural counties may experience a slight increase in population.
That could affect the ability of rural counties to attract and retain new businesses and job opportunities, the report said.
In Colorado Springs, about 8,000 residents live in the rural areas of Aurora, Denver, Lakewood and Summit.
In 2016, Aurora County approved a tax hike for residents of its three western counties that will be used to finance the county roads and other projects.
The increase is expected to raise about $100 million.
The proposed increases are about 10 percent above what the county previously was able to raise.