Idaho's population reaches 1.6 million in new census

Idaho's population reaches 1.6 million in new census

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - The shift of Idaho's population from rural counties to urban areas slowed last year.

Estimates released by the Census Bureau on Thursday showed the 33 rural counties saw their combined population increase for the first time in three years.

The population of the rural counties rose two-tenths of a percent from mid-2012 to mid-2013, or about 1,200 people.

The population of the 11 urban counties increased 1.5 percent.

Statewide, Idaho's population rose 1 percent to just over 1.6 million, resuming a growth rate higher than the national rate of seven-tenths of a percent.

The Pocatello metro area was the only one of the five metro areas to lose population, dropping a half percent.