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More people living in poverty moving to urban areas

New figures from the U.S. Census Bureau show Idaho’s poverty concentration has tripled since the 2000s. The findings show more poverty-stricken families are moving to urban areas and the Idaho Department of Labor said this can have an impact on the local economy. Economist Dan Cravens with the Department said having more poor people in urban areas can lead to more job competition.

“It can lead to a greater demand on infrastructure so you have need for more services, more streets and more roads. There will be a greater demand on sewer and water trash pickup so you can see a spike in certain employment levels because of that increased demand,” said Cravens.

Cravens also said it can impact housing.

“You see the average amount that people pay for rent and you see real estate prices tend to go up too,” he said.

Lee England of Blackfoot said he is noticing more housing options in his neighborhood.

“There is a brand-new apartment just across the street and a brand-new one under construction. On University Avenue there are at least a dozen that are fairly new if not five years old,” England said.

Local moving company “Sumo Moving” said it is getting a lot of calls from people moving to Idaho Falls from California, Texas and Boise.

“I think it is due to the congestion of these bigger places. We hear all the time that people love the commute here and the cost of living is so low,” said Owner Matt Anderson.

Among Idaho’s neighbors, Nevada and Oregon did see a bigger percentage when it came to poor people moving into urban areas.

The U.S. Census Bureau said Bannock County saw a roughly 20-percent increase in the amount of poverty stricken families. Bonneville and Bingham stayed steady at about 10-percent. To read the findings click here,

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