City begins to review 2010 Census data to mount challenge

Volunteer Jules Atangana, a Master's student at the Humphrey School for Public Affairs, is helping with Pine City's Census challenge.

Earlier this year, the City of Pine City decided it wanted to challenge its population number that the Census Bureau came back with, 3,123.   The Census Bureau’s Count Question Resolution (CQR) program allows State, local and Tribal area elected officials to challenge their jurisdiction’s Census counts.

They began accepting 2010 Census challenge submissions on June 1, 2011 and will accept them through June 1, 2013.  Jules Atangana, in his Master of Urban and Regional Planning at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs (University of Minnesota) is offering his help to City Planner Nathan Johnson, to look over the data and verify any possible inaccuracies.  Atangana is originally from Cameroon and lives in Northfield, Minn.

Prior to the 2010 Census count being taken, the Pine City Council passed a resolution partnering with state, local and tribal governments across the nation to help ensure a complete and accurate count.  According to the Census Bureau’s Web site, the Bureau’s goal was to count everyone once, only once, and in the right place.

“There are historically a small percentage of cases where a wrong geographic boundary or coding of a housing unit was used to produce the official census population and housing counts for a local area,” the site says.  “There may also be processing errors.”

If a challenge results in a change, the Census Bureau will issue official revised counts to City officials.  These changes can be used  for future programs that require official 2010 Census data.  They would then also be used to calculate subsequent population estimates for Pine City.  The current list of jurisdictions that have submitted a 2010 CQR Challenge stands at over 100, with the majority listed in “pending status”, four that have changed, and seven with no change.

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