Accessing demographic data about your community

On March 15, 2021, Stacey Carless, the Executive Director of the NC Counts Coalition, and I presented at the 2021 Rural Summit. We provided a detailed look into trends impacting North Carolina, an overview of the 2020 Census and redistricting, and highlighted how to use census and census-derived data in community planning. You can download a pdf of our presentation. During the Q&A session, we were asked questions about the Census and demographic data. The…

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NC urges delayed action on proposed metro standards

By on 3.17.21 in Census 2020

The following post is an email message we received from Bob Coats, Governor's Census Liaison at the North Carolina Office of State Budget and Management, regarding the proposed changes to address how urban areas will be identified after the 2020 Census data are released and how metropolitan statistical areas will be defined. This email has been lightly edited and posted here with his approval. You can read what the recommendations are and how this will…

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Proposed standards impact who is urban in NC

Two recently published Federal Register Notices address how urban areas will be identified after the 2020 Census data are released and how metropolitan areas will be defined. In this post, we detail what the recommendations are, and how that will impact communities in North Carolina. Changing metropolitan definition would impact 3 NC metros Federal Register notice: Recommendations from the Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Area Standards Review Committee to the Office of Management and Budget Concerning…

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Carolina Demography’s Impact in 2020

By on 3.5.21 in NC in Focus

Way back in 2019, which now seems like eons ago, I wrote a column for Vox about the importance of the upcoming 2020 Census. It started off like this: “For demographers like me, the census is kind of like our Super Bowl, if the Super Bowl only took place once a decade — and if the foundation of your representative democracy hinged on the winner of the game.” The 2020 Census kicked off its nationwide…

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Understanding declines in NC public school enrollment

By on 2.15.21 in Education

Across the country, fewer students are showing up in traditional public schools because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. We have looked at attendance data from the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction to understand how declines in enrollment vary across the state and which grades are impacted. How much is school attendance down? Statewide, nearly 63,000 fewer students were attending public schools in Month 2 of 2020-21 compared to 2019-20, a loss of -4.4%. Public school enrollments had been slowly declining since 2015-16, reflecting two factors

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COVID-19 cases across NC counties

It’s been nearly a year since our lives were first disrupted by the global COVID-19 pandemic. What do cumulative case counts, deaths, and vaccination levels look like in North Carolina? Here’s the latest data according to NC DHHS data accessed on 2/11/2021. I used the projected 2020 population from the state demographer to calculate levels per 10,000 residents. COVID-19 Cases There have been 805,889 cases recorded in North Carolina counties or 758 per 10,000 residents.…

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What comes next with the 2020 Census?

By on 12.17.20 in Census 2020

The 2020 Census data collection officially ended on October 15th. In a typical year, we would expect to receive apportionment counts for the U.S. House of Representatives by December 31st and the redistricting data would be delivered by March 31, 2021. This is not a typical year: we still do not know when 2020 Census data will be released. While we wait to find out more details on the 2020 Census release schedule, here’s what…

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NC in Focus: 2020 Veteran’s Snapshot

By on 11.12.20 in NC in Focus

Active-duty military personnel and veterans have a significant presence in North Carolina. North Carolina is home to two major military bases—Fort Bragg (Army) and Camp Lejeune (Marine Corps)—in addition to two Marine Corps Air Stations at New River and Cherry Point and Seymour Johnson Air Force Base. As a result, more North Carolina adults are veterans than the national average: 7.9% versus 6.9% nationwide. In 2019, nearly 642,000 veterans lived in North Carolina according to the most recent…

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Population estimates for 2020 districts in NC

As this article from 538 details, the 2020 election in North Carolina was held under newly redrawn maps. Districts for the U.S. House, state Senate, and state House seats were redrawn after a three-judge panel in state court ruled last year that the previous maps were unconstitutional and violated “citizens’ right to fair elections.” The newly redrawn maps still had to have equal populations using data from the 2010 Census, but North Carolina’s population has…

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Are absentee ballot requests in NC related to COVID-19 rates?

For the past few months, I’ve wondered: is there a relationship between COVID-19 and absentee ballot requests? Specifically, I hypothesized that absentee ballot requests may increase in communities where COVID-19 rates were higher, perhaps due to increased news coverage and concerns about the virus. Yesterday, I finally dug into the data for North Carolina counties. I looked at the percent of registered voters who had requested an absentee ballot and the cumulative COVID-19 cases and…

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