Friday, October 31, 2008

FBI Releases 2007 Hate Crime Statistics

The Federal Bureau of Investigation released statistics which indicated that 7,624 criminal incidents involving 9,006 offenses were reported in 2007 as a result of bias toward a particular race, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity/national origin, or physical or mental disability.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Nearly Half Of States Fail On Emergency Plan Communication

Seven years after Sept. 11, and in the wake of many major natural disasters such as forest fires, hurricanes and flooding, nearly half of U.S. states either have no state-level emergency plan or do not provide it readily to the public, reveals a new study by George Mason University Communication Professor Carl Botan. MORE.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

ACS Compass Products

Over the next six months, the Census Bureau will be releasing a series of handbooks, a set of presentations, and an e-learning tutorial to provide guidance to users on how to understand and best use ACS data. This set of educational materials is called the ACS Compass Products. This week marks the first release of ACS Compass Products and includes these audience-specific handbooks in PDF format:

What General Data Users Need to Know - This handbook helps general audiences understand the basics of the ACS, its opportunities and challenges, and how to access and use the ACS data on the Census Bureau's Web site. It includes concrete examples of how ACS data can be used to answer real-world questions about our society.

What the Business Community Needs to Know - This handbook acknowledges that to make effective use of the ACS, businesses need to understand how ACS data are collected and reported, and their advantages and limitations relative to the long form data previously collected during the decennial census. This handbook describes the data products available from the ACS and how to access them. Examples are provided with step-by-step instructions on accessing the data.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

FFIEC 2008 Census Reports

Find current data using the FFIEC Census Reports tool. It provides access to 2008 demographic, income, population, and housing estimates for people by census tract. Search for these tracts by county or metro area.

Census tracts generally include between 2500 and 8000 residents. Rural counties may have only one or two census tracts, while most urban neighborhoods will have several. Get help locating them with these census tract maps from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Monday, October 27, 2008

2007 Census of Govts Counts 16 Million State, Local Employees

The nation's 89,526 state and local governments employed 16.4 million full-time equivalent employees in 2007, a 4.5 percent increase from 2002, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

These State and Local Government Employment and Payroll figures are the first comprehensive data to be released from the 2007 Census of Governments. Local governments include counties, cities, townships, special districts and school districts.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Census Bureau's Counting of Prisoners Benefits Some Rural Voting Districts

Date: Oct 24, 2008
Source: New York Times (NY)
Section: A
Page: 12


Concerns about so-called prison-based gerrymandering have grown as the number of
inmates around the nation has ballooned. Similar disparities have been identified in upstate New York, Tennessee and Wisconsin.

Critics say the census should count prisoners in the district where they lived before they were incarcerated.


In 2006, experts commissioned by the Census Bureau recommended that the agency study whether prison inmates should be counted in 2010 as residents of the mostly urban neighborhoods where they last lived rather than as residents of the mostly rural districts where they are temporarily housed against their will.


"With only one exception nationwide," Mr. Wagner said, "every time a community learns that prison populations are distorting their access to local government, the legislature has reversed course and redrawn districts based on actual population, not the Census Bureau's mistakes."

The sole exception he cited is St. Lawrence County in upstate New York. ...

"In New York and several other states, the regional transfer of a minority population does have a representational impact," said Prof. Nathan Persily, director of the Center on Law and Politics at Columbia Law School. "There's no reason why a community ought to gain representation because of a large, incarcerated, nonvoting population."

Prof. James A. Gardner of the University at Buffalo Law School, said that because "prisoners don't want to be there, leave at the first opportunity, and
there's no chance they can vote, it is taking advantage of a completely inert
population for the purpose of sneaking out extra political power."

The Prison Policy Initiative found 21 counties across the country where at least one in five people, according to the Census Bureau's count, were actually inmates from another county.



Copyright © 2008 The New York Times Company

Friday, October 24, 2008

Country Insights

Country Insights is a source for statistical data, historical, economic, and political conditions for 199 countries around the world, including the United States.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

State Bankruptcy Filings

Given the current economic situation, a timely resource: compiled state-by-state statistics for bankruptcy cases. Click on a state; more information will appear below the map.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

International Program Center

The International Programs Center (IPC) is part of the US Census Bureau Population Division. It conducts demographic and socioeconomic studies and strengthens statistical development around the world through technical assistance, training, and software products. For over 50 years IPC has assisted in the collection, processing, analysis, dissemination, and use of statistics with counterpart governments throughout the world. Check out their website, including these handy links to international statistical agencies!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

2008 Great Places in America

"APA Great Places offer better choices for where and how people work and live. They are enjoyable, safe, and desirable. They are places where people want to be — not only to visit, but to live and work every day. America’s truly great streets, neighborhoods and public spaces are defined by many criteria, including architectural features, accessibility, functionality, and community involvement."

And two of them are in New York State.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

JEOPARDY! Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Show #5542
$1000 clue in the first round: The Bureau of the Census

None of the contestants even rang in on this, the 28th question of the round; this is called a triple stumper in the J-archives lingo. I must admit that I knew it instantly, but then again would have been embarrassed if I did not.

Do you know?

Interestingly, a similar clue was also a triple stumper on Show #5036 - Monday, July 3, 2006.

The answer?

What is the Commerce Department?

Monday, October 13, 2008

Corporate philanthropy

Giving in Numbers, 2007 Edition is "an analysis of 2006 philanthriopy data from 136 leading companies." Giving was up overall, but while 57% gave more, 43% gave less. The latter may be attributed in some part by "beyond-budget donations" in 2005 in response to huuricanes Katrina and Rita.

Friday, October 10, 2008

USA Today notes difficulty of next decennial Census

For 2010 Census, counting gets tougher:
To count [families], the Census Bureau first has to find them. Complicating the task is a widespread climate of suspicion about personal data landing in the wrong hands and government's increased surveillance power. Much of the unease is engendered by the growing problem of identity theft and the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

The article also had an interesting timeline, provided by our good friends at Census.


Fall: Recruitment begins for local Census jobs for early operations.


Spring: Census workers go door to door to update address lists.
Fall: Recruitment begins for Census takers for 2010.


February-March: Census questionnaires mailed or delivered to households.
April-July: Census takers visit households that did not mail in a questionnaire.
December: Census Bureau delivers population counts to president for apportionment.

March: Census Bureau finishes delivering redistricting data to states.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

U.S. economy generates 750,000+ green jobs

First Metro Green Jobs Report Projects 4.2 Million Jobs by 2038. "The report, The U.S. Conference of Mayors, Mayors Climate Protection Center, is the first calculation of its kind to measure how many direct and indirect jobs are in the new and emerging U.S. green economy."

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The Business Birth/Death Model

Issues in Labor Statistics: How the Business Birth/Death Model Improves Payroll Employment Estimates (PDF. Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

The Current Employment Statistics (CES) program annually "adjusts its sample-based estimates of industry employment for the previous year to universe employment counts derived primarily from the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW)... Accurate CES employment estimates are made possible in part by the use of the “birth/death” model, an adjustment developed by BLS to account for the net employment change stemming from business births and deaths that cannot be captured in real-time by the CES sample."

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Economic Bailout

An Analysis of the Economic Emergency Stabilization Act (PDF) by CCH/Wolters Kluwer. President Bush signed EESA into law within two hours of its final passage in the House of Representatives on October 3, 2008.

Ten Questions and Answers About the Housing Crisis and the Financial Bailout— In Plain English from the Century Foundation

Monday, October 6, 2008

State Budget Damage 'Just Beginning'

“The damage is just beginning” in state budgets, the Rockefeller Institute’s latest State Revenue Report concludes. While overall tax revenues were “superficially strong” in the second quarter of 2008, sales-tax collections are down and declines in income-tax revenue are highly likely in the months ahead. More widespread budget cuts by states “are virtually certain,” the Institute reported. Read the news release.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Private Delivery Services accepted by the NYS Tax Department

"Generally, tax returns, payments, and other documents sent to the New York State Tax Department are considered to be ontime if they are postmarked by the U.S. Postal Service on or before the due date of the return, payment, or other document. As a result of the 1997 Taxpayer Bill of Rights, taxpayers can also use certain private delivery services, in addition to the U.S. Postal Service, with the assurance that returns, payments, etc., that are mailed on time will be considered to have been filed on time. However, only mail delivered by private delivery services that are designated by the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury or by the New York State Commissioner of Taxation and Finance qualify for the timely postmarked is timely filed/paid rule." To view the entire document, Publication 55 (9/08), click here(PDF).
Note DHL, FedEx and UPS are on the list, but it must be for specific levels of service.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Best Performing Cities Index

The somewhat misleadingly titled Index actually ranks large and small metropolitan areas, separately, "by how well they are creating and sustaining jobs and economic growth."

For New York State, the news could be worse. The best rank is for NYC/White Plains/ Wayne, NJ at #85, up from #148 last year.
Other improvemements:
96. Nassau-Suffolk (up from #139)
125. Binghamton (up from #147)
127. Syracuse (up from #174)
134. Utica-Rome (up from #164)
138. Albany-Schenectady-Troy (up from #166)

Not all the news was good. Poughkeepsie-Newburgh-Middletown plunged from #87 to #159, while Buffalo-Niagara Falls (#183 to #180) and Rochester (#182 to #181) barely moved.

For the small cities, Ithaca (#97 to #64), Glens Falls (#77 to #72) and Kingston (#128 to #77) all were heading in the right direction.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Dealing with the Emergency

Influenza outbreak.
Terror attack.
HHS' Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has released a new Web-based interactive tool to help hospitals and emergency planners identify resource requirements to treat an influx of patients due to a major disaster.

Tool Estimates Resources Needed For Emergency Response