K-State Population Expert Pessimistic about Greensburg

With rural towns all over the Great Plains already having trouble maintaining their populations, much less growing, one Kansas State professor and population expert says that Greensburg will have have a very difficult time recovering from the devastating tornado that nearly obliterated the town despite all the aid that has been flowing into the community.

Laszlo Kulcsar, assistant professor of sociology and director of the Kansas Population Center at K-state, said that the underlying issues which had made Greensburg a declining town before the tornado still remain.

Like other rural towns all over the region, it has a disproportionate percentage of residents over 65 as well as a disproportionate number of people living in poverty.

The aging trend, according to Kulcher, is indicative of adult children leaving Greensburg for larger communities.

Declining populations feed a vicious cycle that perpetuates an even greater population loss as business have a harder time finding workers to keep their businesses alive. And without business people have an even greater incentive to leave.