January 15, 2002 11:00 pm

There is a slight increase in the number of people living in Union County, including 93 more in La Grande, the Population Research Center at Portland State University announced.

The center has just certified another round of population estimates for the states cities and counties, this time reflecting circumstances as of July 1, 2001.

La Grande now has 12,420 residents, the center announced. The 2000 census listed the city with 12,327 residents.

Union Countys population is at 24,550, up from the 24,530 listed after the last census.

Wallowa and Grant counties figures dropped 1.7 percent lower than the census figures. Wallowa now has 7,100 people. The last census showed the county at 7,226.

The latest estimates for other Union County cities are: Cove 590, Elgin 1,660, Imbler 280, Island City 920, North Powder 490, Summerville 120, and Union 1,960.

The populations listed for Wallowa Countys incorporated cities is Enterprise 1,890, Joseph 1,060, Lostine 260, and Wallowa 870.

The PSU center said the states population has risen by 1.5 percent since the 2000 census, putting the total at 3,471,700.

While there was not much change in Union County overall, Baker County numbers dropped marginally to 16,700. Baker Citys numbers dropped by 20 from 2000 to 2001, PSU said. The city now has 9,840 residents. It is the only area city said to be down by 10 or more residents.

Of the cities listed, Ontario showed the greatest increase 155 people of any Eastern Oregon community.

From Observer staff reports