Census study claims NJ’s big population gain in 2020 was real


TRENTON — New Jersey’s larger-than-expected population count from the 2020 census has been deemed accurate by the Census Bureau, which made a study of the count of each state.

The survey, which it conducts after each census, finds counts from 14 states are likely statistically inaccurate – with eight states overstated and six states understated. But New Jersey, which had the largest variation in the country from its pre-census estimate of about 400,000, was not among them.

For the post-count survey, the Census Bureau conducted follow-up interviews with 114,000 households across the country and compared their responses to the official count to gauge its accuracy.

“No census is perfect,” Census Bureau Director Robert Santos said during a webinar. “And the PES allows us to be better informed about the 2020 census by estimating what part of the population was counted correctly, where we missed people and where some people were counted when they shouldn’t have been counted. being.”

New Jersey was among more than two-thirds of states whose 2020 population counts were deemed statistically accurate by the Census Bureau. But Tim Kennel, assistant division chief for statistical methods, said the survey finds eight states were overestimated and six underestimated.

“Arkansas, Florida, Illinois, Mississippi, Tennessee and Texas had statistically significant undercounts,” Kennel said. “Delaware, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island and Utah had statistically significant overcounts.”

New Jersey appears to have had the second smallest statistical error, closer than any state except New Mexico.

That’s not to say the count here was perfect, but the duplicates and omissions are essentially compensated. It corresponds to an estimated undercount of around 11,000 people, or 0.12%.

Some states were down more than 5% – lower in Arkansas, too high in Delaware, Hawaii and Rhode Island.

The inquiry will not change the allocation of seats in the House or the redistribution data. This could alter the distribution of $1.5 trillion a year in federal aid.

Michael Symons is the Statehouse Bureau Chief for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at [email protected]

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