The U.S. Census Bureau reported today on where the heaviest population growth in New Mexico was concentrated last year in a report released today through UNM's Bureau of Business and Economic Research.

The fastest-growing county in New Mexico between July 1, 2012, and July 1, 2013 was Lea County, whose population rose 2.79 percent over the period. Lea County was followed by Eddy County (1.87 percent), Sandoval County (0.87 percent), McKinley County (0.79 percent) and Taos County (0.71 percent).

With respect to numerical growth, Lea County added 1,897 people over the period, more than any other county in the state. It was followed by Bernalillo County, which grew by 1,777 people, then Sandoval County (1,192), Eddy county (1,036) and Santa Fe County (967).   

Bernalillo County is the most populous county in New Mexico, with 674,221 residents, followed by Doña Ana (213,460), Santa Fe County (147,423) and Sandoval County (136,575).

This information is based on annual population estimates for each of the nation’s counties, county equivalents, metropolitan areas and micropolitan areas since the 2010 Census and up to July 1, 2013. Internet tables are available showing rankings and the components of population change (births, deaths, migration).

UNM Geospatial and Population Studies group, which is part of BBER, provides similar statistics for New Mexico. For more information visit the BBER website. The Data Bank would be happy to help interested parties navigate the Census or other data websites and assist in understanding the different data sources. For more information, contact (505) 277-3038 or

Later this year, data will be available from Census County Business Patterns, which provides the economic side of the story. Annual statistics will be released on the number of establishments, employees, and annual payroll for nearly 1,200 industries at the national, state, and county levels. Statistics on the number of people who commute from one specific county to another will also be released this spring.