Fewer people are moving into Arizona, slowing the state's population growth and handicapping the real estate market and the economic recovery, the Arizona Republic
The paper reports that while the state's population has likely increased by roughly 1 percent in the past year, much of that appears to be due to births, and not people moving into the state. Despite being one of the fastest-growing states in recent years, many people are packing
up their belongings into moving boxes
and driving away.
"A lot of people are pulling up and going back to where they came from originally," Neal Wetzel, sales manager for a local moving company
, told the paper "We're taking people back to Michigan, for God's sake, where the unemployment rate is higher than it is in Arizona."
The official population counts from the U.S. Census will be released in December.
Some of the states' emigration may due to the relocation
of a large number of Hispanic residents who chose to leave following the state's controversial immigration law. The law allows police to stop anyone they feel may not be a legal resident and arrest those who are not.