The US Census Bureau conducts a census of US residents every 10 years (a “decennial” census). The data collected by the this census determine the number of seats each state has in the US House of Representatives and are used to distribute billions of dollars of federal funds to local communities. Idaho receives approximately $1,200 annually, or $12,000 over a decade, for each person counted in the census.
The results of the 2010 census enable local governments to identify demographic characteristics, promote economic development, apply for grants, and determine needs for infrastructure and public services. Census population data are the basis for transportation planning, economic development, social and emergency services planning, municipal budgeting, land use planning, and more. Learn more about the 2010 census at www.census.gov/2010census/.
COMPASS worked with local jurisdictions in 2009 and 2010 to help prepare for the census. Through COMPASS’ efforts, approximately 57,000 more people were counted in the two-county area than if COMPASS had not assisted. This amounts to approximately $69 million more per year to local jurisdictions – $689 million over the next decade.
COMPASS also participates in several census preparation programs as a service to member agencies, including:
- Boundary and Annexation Survey (BAS): The US Census Bureau conducts the BAS annually to collect information about legal boundaries and geographic areas. The BAS is used to update and tabulate data for its decennial and economic censuses, and for annual estimates and surveys such as the Population Estimates Program and the American Community Survey. COMPASS annually completes the BAS for requesting member agencies. More information about the census BAS is available at www.census.gov/geo/partnerships/bas.html.
- American Community Survey (ACS): ACS is an ongoing survey that provides data every year ― giving communities the current information they need to plan investments and services. COMPASS provides data reporting, analysis, and mapping for member agencies and to the general public upon request. Maps of ACS data are available at www.compassidaho.org/prodserv/mapgis-maps.htm.
- Census Training: COMPASS hosts census training workshops to present national and local demographic trends and demonstrate how data can be used at a local level. The last training was presented in February 2013; materials are available at www.compassidaho.org/comm/publicevents_2013_ed_series.htm.
To view Idaho census statistics click here.