(Raleigh, NC, Tuesday, September 25, 2018) â€“ The U.S. Constitution requires an accurate count of the nationâ€™s population every 10 years through a nationwide census. Counting every person in the United States is a massive and complex undertaking even under the best conditions. Some groups of people have historically proven to be challenging to count accurately. The census misses disproportionate numbers of people of color, urban and rural low-income households, and young children.
Major rural targeted programs that are guided by census data total about $30 billion a year. A new report details six large rural assistance programs, state-by-state, that distribute more than $25 billion each year to state, localities and households in Rural America. The six large rural assistance programs are identified as: low to moderate income housing loans; rural electrification loans and loan guarantees; water and waste disposal systems for rural communities; rural rental assistance programs; business and industry loans; and, the cooperative extension service.
Andrew Reamer, research professor at the GW Institute of Public Policy, explains the importance of an accurate census in North Carolina.
THIRTY-THREE PERCENT OF NORTH CAROLINA IS RURAL, MAKING IT THE FIFTEENTH MOST RURAL STATE IN THE COUNTRY. THE COUNTING FOR DOLLARS PROGRAM AIMS TO UNDERSTAND TWO MAIN THINGS: THE EXTENT TO WHICH DOMESTIC FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS WILL RELY ON DATA FROM THE TWENTY-TWENTY CENSUS TO DISTRIBUTE FEDERAL MONIES TO STATES, LOCALITIES AND HOUSEHOLDS ACROSS THE NATION, AND THE IMPACT OF THE ACCURACY OF THE TWENTY-TWENTY CENSUS ON THE GEOGRAPHIC DISTRIBUTION OF FEDERAL FUNDS.
NATIONALLY, WE HAVE IDENTIFIED MORE THAN THREE-HUNDRED-TWENTY ANNUAL CENSUS-GUIDED FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS WITHIN THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. WHILE RURAL AMERICA RECEIVES MONETARY ASSISTANCE FROM MANY PROGRAMS THAT SERVE BOTH RURAL AND URBAN AREAS - SUCH AS MEDICAID, HIGHWAY FUNDING, AND EDUCATION GRANTS - THIS REPORT IDENTIFIES MAJOR FEDERAL PROGRAMS THAT ARE TARGETED TO RURAL AREAS.
To find out more about the upcoming census in North Carolina, visit thecensusproject.org.