Good news, chuqueños. The foreboding sense of doom you’ve been feeling for the past several years is not a brain tumor, or a premonition that your mother-in-law is moving in with you.
The dark cloud that’s following you is the presentiment that El Paso’s economic well-being is likely to take a slight hit in 2017, according to the wizards conjuring economic forecasts over there at the University of Texas at El Paso.
That’s without taking into consideration any effect the Trump presidency might have on the local economy in his efforts to make America great again.
The profs at UTEP won’t divulge the detailed forecasts for less than $10 (and none of you interested citizens have forked over a dime to help me help you), but they did give us a glimpse of the historic data-sets, and they’re not pretty.
For instance, for 2013, 2014, and 2015, El Paso recorded a net out-migration of 19,905 citizens. That was offset by a natural increase of 25,336, for a net gain of 4,431. The disconcerting part of that data is that of those 19,905 people who left, probably a lot of them paid property tax, whereas that 25,336 increase attributable to natural growth are still in diapers.
It’s too bad that this scientific data isn’t available to our brothers and sisters over there at City Hall. Properly informed, they could have made some wise decisions to help ameliorate our tax burden.
I mean, maybe. There’s a chance they could have done that.