Mostly True
New York has "the biggest outmigration of citizens of any state."

Edward Cox on Tuesday, September 19th, 2017 in a conversation with reporters

It's true: A lot of people are leaving New York

New York State Republican Chairman Ed Cox claimed New York has “the biggest outmigration of citizens of any state.” (Photo: Dan Clark/Buffalo News)

New York state’s population declined last year for the first time in a decade.

State Republican Chairman Edward F. Cox blames the drop on Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo.

Cuomo's economic policies make it hard for employers to add jobs, especially in upstate New York, so residents are leaving the state for better employment opportunities elsewhere, he said.

"We have the biggest outmigration of citizens of any state," Cox said.

Thirty other states also lost population to other states last year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Is Cox right that New York state tops that list?

Latest data

New York state lost a net 191,367 residents to other states between July 2015 and July 2016, more than any other state.

Where are they going? The most popular destination is Florida, according to U.S. Census Bureau estimates. Almost 70,000 New York state residents moved to the Sunshine State in 2015. The second-most popular destination was New Jersey, which gained about 50,000 people from New York state. California ranked third with almost 37,000 people from New York.

Brooklyn had the largest exodus from New York with a net 43,264 people moving from the borough to another state. Only three counties — Ontario, Saratoga, and Warren — had more people move in from another state than out.

Since 2011

Last year was the worst year for domestic migration in New York state since at least 2011, the data shows. The state had a net loss of 90,342 people to other states between 2010 and 2011. That count has increased each year since, except for a short-lived dip in 2013.

New York lost a net 846,669 people to other states between 2011 and 2016, more than any other state. Illinois recorded the second-highest outmigration in the country with a net loss of 540,166 residents.

Again, Florida and New Jersey attracted the most New York residents. Almost 300,000 of them moved to Florida between 2011 and 2015. New Jersey ranked second, drawing about 225,000 people from New York state. Pennsylvania was the third most popular destination, with about 160,000 people migrating from New York state

At the same time, New York state’s population has increased by 367,179 since 2010 thanks to almost 1.5 million births and migration from other countries.

Migration rates

Beyond raw counts, New York state has the biggest outmigration rate among the states if considering just domestic migration. Ten of every 1,000 New York state residents moved to another state in 2016. Illinois ranked second, with nine of every 1,000 residents in that state moving to another state.

Governing magazine charted each state's migration rate -- the difference of in-migration and outmigration -- per 1,000 people in 2015-16, and it also included people coming and going from outside the country. New York state ranked fifth behind Illinois, Wyoming, North Dakota and Kansas.

Our ruling

Cox said New York has "the biggest outmigration of citizens of any state."

By raw numbers alone, Cox is right. Census data shows more people are moving from New York state to other states than move from any other state. And the flow has become larger since 2011. Given that New York state has the nation's fourth-largest population, nearly 20 million, it's not surprising the numbers dwarf smaller states.

But by proportion, and when including international migration, several other states have bigger outmigration rates. 

We rate his claim Mostly True.

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New York has "the biggest outmigration of citizens of any state."
New York
Tuesday, September 19, 2017