AP

Detroit is largest city to challenge 2020 census numbers

Apr 4, 2022, 1:43 PM | Updated: Apr 6, 2022, 10:51 am

DETROIT (AP) — Majority-Black Detroit has become the largest U.S. city to challenge its figures from the 2020 census following a national head count in which the U.S. Census Bureau acknowledges that a higher percentage of African Americans were undercounted than last decade, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Leaders of Michigan’s largest city, which is more than three-quarters Black, had questioned the results of the 2020 census since last December when they released a report suggesting that more than 8% of the occupied homes in 10 Detroit neighborhoods may have been undercounted.

Detroit filed its challenge late last week, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

In a letter to the Census Bureau, Mayor Michael Duggan said insufficient resources and not enough census takers were devoted to the count in Detroit, resulting in an undercount of unoccupied homes that could amount to tens of thousand of residents being overlooked.

“The Census Bureau now has an obligation to set the record straight,” Duggan said.

The 2020 census data showed Detroit with 639,111 residents, while estimates from 2019 put the city’s population at 670,052 residents. A drop of 31,000 residents would be “really implausible,” Jeffrey Morenoff, a University of Michigan sociology professor who helped conduct a study on the undercount for the city, said when the report was released in December.

Detroit is no stranger to census challenges. Then-Mayor Coleman Young sued after the 1990 census, and the numbers were later adjusted.

Even though the overall U.S. population was missed by a small percentage, 0.24%, during a once-a-decade head count challenged by the pandemic, natural disasters and political interference from the Trump administration, some minority groups were overlooked at greater rates than the previous decade. The Black population was undercounted by 3.3%, those who identified as some other race had a 4.3% undercount, almost 5% of the Hispanic population was missed and more than 5.6% of American Indians living on reservations were undercounted.

Detroit is among almost two dozen cities and counties that have challenged their census figures so far. States and municipalities have until the middle of next year to appeal their figures through the Census Bureau’s Count Question Resolution operation. Challenges are rarely successful, but the outcome could determine whether the cities and counties get their fair share when it comes to the distribution of $1.5 trillion in annual federal funding.

In Detroit’s case, Duggan said that federal funding for the city tied to the 2010 census in the previous decade exceeded $37 billion.

“A roughly 8% undercount of Detroit’s population in the 2020 census creates disastrous financial consequences for the City,” Duggan said.

The overwhelmingly majority of the municipalities challenging their census figures are small towns, with more than half of them coming from the rural South. About half a dozen have said in their challenges that prisons in their communities were overlooked during the count.

Residents of prisons, nursing homes and college dorms — also known as group quarters — were among the most difficult people to count during the 2020 census since students on campus were sent home when the pandemic began in the U.S. in March 2020, and prisons and nursing homes went into lockdowns against the spread of the coronavirus.

Because of the difficulties in counting these residents, the Census Bureau last month created a separate program for challenges of group quarter counts.

Leaders of municipalities making the challenges said an incorrect count could cost them state and federal grants. Mayor Joe Sparks of Bennett, Iowa, said he is worried that the town won’t get money for two emergency power generators from the Federal Emergency Management Agency if its census numbers aren’t corrected.

The town’s population went from 405 in 2010 to 347 in 2020, “and that is very hard for me to believe,” Sparks said.

“The reduced population numbers will affect Bennett residents adversely,” he said.

___

Schneider reported from Orlando, Florida.

___

Follow Mike Schneider on Twitter at https://twitter.com/MikeSchneiderAP

___

This story has been updated to show that the U.S. Census Bureau program for making challenges is the Count Question Resolution operation, not the County Question Resolution operation.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Former President Donald Trump sits in a courtroom next to his lawyer Todd Blanche before the start ...

Associated Press

Trump hush money trial enters new phase after defense rests without testimony from former president

Donald Trump's hush money trial is now closer to the moment when the jury will begin deciding the former president's fate.

2 days ago

UoA student convicted of first-degree murder after killing professor...

Associated Press

Former Arizona grad student convicted of first-degree murder in 2022 shooting of professor

A former University of Arizona grad student was convicted of first-degree murder after fatally shooting a professor on campus two years ago.

2 days ago

Rudy Giuliani bankruptcy filing defamation lawsuit...

Associated Press

Ex-NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Arizona’s Kelli Ward plead not guilty in fake elector case

Giuliani appeared remotely for the arraignment that was held in a Phoenix courtroom. His trial will take place in October.

2 days ago

President Joe Biden gestures after speaking to graduating students at the Morehouse College commenc...

Associated Press

Biden tells Morehouse graduates that scenes in Gaza from the Israel-Hamas war break his heart, too

Joe Biden on Sunday offered his most direct recognition of U.S. students' anguish over the Israel-Hamas war.

4 days ago

Rudy Giuliani...

Associated Press

Rudy Giuliani is the final defendant served indictment in Arizona fake elector case

Rudy Giuliani has been served an indictment in Arizona's fake elector case for his role in an attempt to overturn the 2020 election.

5 days ago

Follow @ktar923...

Sponsored Content by Collins Comfort Masters

Here's how to be worry-free when your A/C goes out in the middle of summer

PHOENIX -- As Arizona approaches another hot summer, Phoenix residents are likely to spend more time indoors.

Sponsored Articles

...

DESERT INSTITUTE FOR SPINE CARE

Desert Institute for Spine Care is the place for weekend warriors to fix their back pain

Spring has sprung and nothing is better than March in Arizona. The temperatures are perfect and with the beautiful weather, Arizona has become a hotbed for hikers, runners, golfers, pickleball players and all types of weekend warriors.

...

COLLINS COMFORT MASTERS

Here are 5 things Arizona residents need to know about their HVAC system

It's warming back up in the Valley, which means it's time to think about your air conditioning system's preparedness for summer.

...

Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.

Detroit is largest city to challenge 2020 census numbers