More than $12 Billion at Stake

The goal of the 2020 Census was to count everyone once, only once and in the right place.
In FY2016, South Carolina received $12,691,509,891 through 55 federal spending programs guided by data derived from the 2010 Census. In South Carolina, each person represents $809 in Federal funding (in Georgia, it’s $708, in North Carolina, it’s $988). The five Federal Medical Assistance Programs that comprise this number are Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program, Title IV-E Foster Care, Title IV-E Adoption Assistance, and the Child Care and Development Fund. There are additional Federal funds for other programs that aren’t directly tied to an individual.  Overall, there are more than $675 billion in Federal funds distributed back to tribal, state, and local governments based on census numbers.  For a fuller explanation of the fiscal counts to SC by a Census undercount see Counting for Dollars 2020.

Within the state of South Carolina, Anderson county finished 6th of our 46 counties. Percentage-wise, the county was just 0.5% below its 2010 Census response rate. Covid-19 considerations negatively impacted out response rate. People were understandably distracted by job losses – or working from home – or working at home with school-age children at home. Some folks had to leave their homes and were doubling or tripling up, or lived in non-traditional housing, so they weren’t at the address at which the Census invitation arrived.  Although being able to respond to the Census via phone, smart phone or internet was convenient, those neither administratively inclined nor unconnected to those tools were disadvantaged.

In Anderson county, it is likely that both seniors and economically-displaced adults were not completely counted in Census 2020.  It is also likely that children under the age of five had an even higher rate of undercount than in 2010; you can see where that happened in the map below.

Overall Data & Mapping Tools

Hard to Count Areas

Here’s a graphic for Anderson County based on https://www.censushardtocountmaps2020.us/.