By Mark Waite
The Nye County population registered its fourth consecutive quarter of growth, though very little growth, in statistics released by the Nye County Planning Department.
Planners estimate Nye County had a population of 46,258 as of June 30, the end of the second quarter of 2012. That’s up by 43 residents over the 46,215 after the first quarter, a 0.2 percent gain.
Nye County population bottomed out at 45,937 after the third quarter of 2011, but has steadily risen by 321 people since then.
Pahrump figures closely mirror the county statistics since 82.7 percent of the Nye County population is from Pahrump in the latest statistics.
Planners estimate there were 38,289 Pahrump residents after the second quarter, a 0.3 percent increase or 51 more Pahrumpians than after the first quarter.
The Pahrump population dropped to below 38,000 after the third quarter of 2011, to 37,990 residents, but has since grown by 299 people.
Elsewhere, Amargosa Valley lost five residents, with a population of 1,355 people after the second quarter.
Beatty gained 15 people in the second quarter, a 1.8 percent increase in population, growing from 1,027 to 1,042 residents.
Tonopah’s population fell by four residents, despite the mining exploration and solar power project, according to planning estimates. The estimate of 2,904 Tonopahns is the lowest since the 2,871 people estimated after the second quarter of 2010.
The population of Smoky Valley stayed the same at 1,825 residents. Gabbs had 367 people, a loss of 12.
Planners estimate the population using the active residential customer data from electrical utilities multiplied by the average number of persons per household.
The population of residents in group quarters like nursing homes and detention facilities is estimated using a trending factor that is monitored on an annual basis by phone interviews.
Nye County uses the population estimates for planning purposes, as a comparison with other estimates and to establish baseline conditions for the Yucca Mountain Project.