The National Center for Health Statistics reports Vermont had 6,513 live births in 2007-- 10.5 births for every 1,000 residents. It's the lowest birth rate in the nation, but not much lower than Maine at 10.7 and New Hampshire at 10.8.
Number one was Utah at 20.8. The national average was 14.3.
"It reflects an overall trend toward lower birth rates in general," explained Dr. Wendy Davis, Vt. Health Commissioner. "It also reflects our Vermont demographics."
Davis says the low birth rate is attributable to several factors like the state's very high percentage of Caucasian women who have very low birth rates, but a very low population of Hispanic women who have the highest birth rates.
Another factor: Vermont women are the best educated in the nation according to the report and they are having fewer children or none at all.
"I would hope that must reflect that people are being thoughtful about family planning and really doing this in a thoughtful manner," Davis said.
Economist Art Woolf said, "If they have careers, if you have more kids, you give up your career, and you give more years of your career if you have kids."
Woolf says a significant percent of well-educated women are forsaking motherhood for greater wealth; part of a declining birth rate trend in America that started 200 years ago.
"And so that's going to be a trend that continues," Woolf said. "You know, how low will it go?"
Woolf says that's the problem because Vermont's birth and fertility rates are now so low that the state's economic future is threatened because there will be too few workers to attract and keep businesses.
"So they'll go to North Carolina, or Boston, or Arizona, or Texas, or someplace where they can find workers to do the job that they want because Vermont firms are competing in national and international markets," Woolf said.
So the birth rate is good news for potential mothers who are acquiring more wealth with careers in the workplace, but the bad news is that that workplace may disappear if they don't have more babies.
The new report does have good news about younger mothers. The teen birth rate continues to decline in Vermont and is one of the lowest in the nation. And Vermont babies are among the healthiest at birth.
Tuesday, March 11 2014 7:56 PM EDT2014-03-11 23:56:46 GMT
"You know, people say you might not need it, which is true, but this way you get a choice. I don't have to go out tomorrow," said Lorinda Henry of Milton. Henry says she hit the grocery stores TuesdayMore >>
Parts of Vermont could get up to 24 inches of snow in the coming storm. And VTrans officials are warning drivers they may not be able to keep up with the storm rolling in Wednesday.More >>
Tuesday, March 11 2014 8:02 PM EDT2014-03-12 00:02:07 GMT
"Seems like it was just yesterday. Doesn't seem like it's been two years at all," said Glenda Reandeau of Tupper Lake. Residents of Tupper Lake still have their eyes out for Colin Gillis, a now 20-year-oldMore >>
Colin Gillis of Tupper Lake, N.Y., disappeared two years ago. And authorities are still searching for him. They say the investigation now focuses on tips from the public and from those who were the last to see Gillis.More >>
Tuesday, March 11 2014 6:17 PM EDT2014-03-11 22:17:43 GMT
A Rutland City Police officer is recovering at home after a crash involving his cruiser. Authorities say Officer Adam Lucia was one of two officers responding to an aggravated assault call Monday at TopsMore >>
A Rutland City Police officer is recovering at home after a crash involving his cruiser.More >>
Tuesday, March 11 2014 11:49 AM EDT2014-03-11 15:49:17 GMT
A Plattsburgh woman faces charges for allegedly attacking someone with a knife. New York State Police were called to the Best Value Inn on Booth Drive Sunday night for a report of a domestic dispute. InvestigatorsMore >>
A Plattsburgh woman faces charges for allegedly attacking someone with a knife.More >>
Tuesday, March 11 2014 10:14 AM EDT2014-03-11 14:14:46 GMT
A Winooski man says he was held at knife point on Church Street in Burlington Monday afternoon as robbers took nearly 300 dollars from him. Police arrested 29-year-olds Andre Martel and Anthony HammondMore >>
A Winooski man says he was held at knife point on Church Street Monday afternoon as robbers took nearly $300 from him.More >>
Tuesday, March 11 2014 10:01 AM EDT2014-03-11 14:01:29 GMT
A South Londonderry man captured at the end of a high-speed chase now faces up to life in prison. Police say Christopher Bush topped speeds of 100-miles-per-hour in a stolen SUV. The 27 year old pleadedMore >>
A South Londonderry man captured at the end of a high-speed chase now faces up to life in prison.More >>