Story Recipe: Finding specific microdata about your county

We recently received a request from a resident in Lincoln County, asking for assistance in locating data related to digital inclusion, in order to help enroll residents who qualify for the FCC Emergency Broadband Benefit. Specifically, the reader asked us to determine the following: How much the acquisition of 200 hot spots in Lincoln County helped close the digital divide How many households in Lincoln County would be eligible for enrollment in the EBB program,…

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County estimates show more deaths than births, pandemic migration

By on 3.24.22 in NC in Focus

The 2021 county population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau are the first set of population estimates based on the 2020 Census. Here’s what the new data tells us about how North Carolina counties have changed in the year following the Census. 73 NC counties have grown since 2020 North Carolina grew by 112,000 people or 1.1% between April 1, 2020, and July 1, 2021, faster than the national rate of 0.1%. According to the…

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New ACS data helps us understand social and economic changes in NC

By on 3.22.22 in Uncategorized

Last week, the Census Bureau released the 2016-2020 5-Year American Community Survey data. Here’s what you need to know. What is the American Community Survey? The American Community Survey (ACS) is an ongoing survey that covers detailed social and economic topics, such as education, employment, internet access, and transportation. Each year*, the Census Bureau releases single-year estimates for places with populations of 65,000 or over and 5-year estimates for places with populations less than 65,000.…

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Mailbag: Questions about ACS, Census, and population estimates

There are three key data sets from the U.S. Census Bureau that we use to understand population trends: the decennial census, the American Community Survey (ACS), and population and housing unit estimates. (Background: a deep dive into each of these data sources). These sources are similar, but not quite the same, which can lead to questions from data users. Here is a summary of some of the questions we’ve received from data users and/or seen…

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The pandemic baby bust was smaller than we thought

Nationally, and in North Carolina, there was evidence of a Covid-19 “baby bust”, meaning the number of births decreased after the pandemic started in March 2020. We reached out to the State Center for Health Statistics (SCHS) for updated data. What does this new data tell us? We did see a decrease but it was smaller than expected First, the Covid-19 baby bust was real, but not as large as we initially reported. Last year,…

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A new tool for understanding educational trends in NC

By on 2.7.22 in Education

Today we are launching a new tool with myFutureNC—the myFutureNC Attainment Trends Workbook—to help you understand trends in educational indicators at the state- and county-level. This tool draws from state and federal sources to highlight trends in three attainment-relevant areas: Academic Readiness, including NC Pre-K participation, College- and Career-Ready in Math and Reading, Advanced Placement and College & Career Promise participation, chronic absenteeism, and high school graduation; College & Career Access, including ACT performance, FAFSA…

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A new dashboard helps visualize millions of NC criminal justice records

By on 1.27.22 in NC in Focus

The Criminal Justice Innovation Lab (“Lab”) at UNC’s School of Government recently released a Measuring Justice Dashboard. The dashboard visualizes millions of North Carolina criminal justice records to help stakeholders understand state and local systems, see where they are doing well, and spot areas that may need attention. We spoke with Jessica Smith, Lab Director and W.R. Kenan Jr. Distinguished Professor of Public Law and Government, about the dashboard and how it was built. Why…

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Who needs more than four COVID-19 tests per household?

By on 1.19.22 in COVID-19

The federal government launched a new website on Wednesday to provide four free at-home COVID-19 tests for every residential address in the United States. There are many households in the United States with more than four residents living in them. Who are these households and where are they located? We also wanted to learn more about households that may need alternative ways of accessing the material – because they don’t have Internet – or that…

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Open: Comments on proposed 2020 Post-Census Group Quarters Review

By on 1.14.22 in Census 2020

The 2020 census is a point-in-time count of all individuals living in the United States on April 1, 2020. As part of ensuring complete and accurate data, the Census Bureau gives communities the opportunity to request a review of their census count. This process, known as the Census Count Question Resolution (CQR) program, began on January 3, 2022. CQR is limited in its scope. Notably, it does not address potential omissions in the 2020 Census.…

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What you need to know about the 2020 American Community Survey

In October, the U.S. Census Bureau released a report detailing why it planned to release the results of the 2020 American Community Survey (ACS) 1-year estimates in an experimental format. The ACS is the only annually updated source of detailed social, demographic, and economic information for all communities in the United States. In addition, the Bureau announced in November that it would delay the release of the 5-Year ACS estimates that had been planned for…

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