Fort Kent: The Brain Gain Population Attraction Conference has been cancelled due to low registration numbers. The conference would have been held at the University of Maine at Fort Kent on Wednesday, May 22nd. It was organized by the Town of Fort Kent, UMFK and the Northern Maine Development Commission. The conference was geared toward attracting millennials, families and others to rural areas like Aroostook County.
"Population decline is a pressing issue in Aroostook County," says Robert Clark, Executive Director of NMDC. "Since 2010, the Aroostook County population has dropped by more than 4,600". Clark says that for every 1,000 people lost, the region loses $22 million in disposable personal income. "Less people in Aroostook County means a smaller workforce, which translates into fewer people to create output and fewer people to earn income that supports demand for local goods and services," he adds.
Clark says, even though this conference to address population decline did not pan out, the behind the scenes work will be used to present the information in an alternate format at a future date. UMFK will be refunding the early registrants.