New York residents flee state as population stagnates

New York residents are leaving the state in droves, continuing a pattern of migration loss that has plagued the state for years.

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New York saw its fourth consecutive year of population loss between 2018 and 2019 despite a promising economy, according to a demographic study by the New York-based think tank Empire Center.

The state lost 76,790 people in 2018-2019, a 0.4 percent decrease from the previous year, bringing its total population down to about 19.4 million, the study found.

"NY is a state [with] limitless potential," Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) tweeted Tuesday in response to the report. "Success should be better rewarded, constitutional rights should be better protected, tax [money] should be better spent, our police [and] rule of law should be better respected [and] illegal immigration should be less encouraged."

Since 2010, the state has lost nearly 1.4 million, making it the state with the largest cumulative net domestic migration loss in the country, according to the study.

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Conversely, the state has gained only 75,459 residents since 2010, or 0.4 percent, ranking 46th out of 50 states and the District of Columbia for population growth. The total U.S. population has grown more than 6 percent since 2010, nearly 16 times more than New York's growth rate.

"There are many takeaways here, not least of which is that King Cuomo is not just an awful leader [and] governor, but also dishonest, deceptive, uninspiring, unmotivated [and] unaccountable. Individuals, families [and] businesses should be running towards NY, not away," Zeldin added, referring to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

New York was one of 10 states to experience population decline in 2018-2019, and the rate at which its residents left fell just behind West Virginia, Alaska and Illinois.

Additionally, the state's new immigrant population has declined since 2010 -- the second-lowest immigrant resident decline for the state in 58 years, the report notes.

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And many of New York's former residents are moving out of the cold and into the Sunshine State. Some experts say New York tax law has been one of the driving forces behind fleeing inhabitants.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo speaks in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

"The cost of living in New York — the high taxes, regulations and housing costs — are making it untenable to live the American dream here," Staten Island Republican Councilman Joe Borelli told The New York Post. "It’s hard to see how this changes with progressive Democrats entrenched in government."

People moving out of New York state contributed the most to Flordia's population growth between 2017 and 2018. A total of 63,722 New York residents moved to the Sunshine State within a year, according to U.S. Census Bureau data published in April.

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President Trump announced in October that he would be leaving New York for Palm Beach, where he frequents his Mar-a-Lago golf club, saying he cherishes New York but has been "treated very badly by the political leaders of both the city and state" despite paying "millions of dollars in city, state and local taxes."

Sen. Rick Scott, R-Fla., cheered the phenomenon but condemned New York tax policy during a Nov. 1 interview with Fox News' Neil Cavuto.

"What are these states thinking? If you keep raising taxes, what's going to happen to their citizens?" Scott said. "They're moving. They can't pay those taxes. And it's impossible to do business up there. So they're going to just keep moving and moving — moving to Florida. It's a death spiral."

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