URBAN ECONOMIC POLICY
Supporting the U.S. Census Bureau's Revised Census 2000 Plan
Tax Incentives to Revive Distressed Communities and Promote Smart Growth in the 21st Century
Opposing Mandatory Social Security Coverage for State and Local Employees
Increasing the Limit on Small Issue Tax-Exempt Municipal Bonds
Post Office Community Partnership Act of 1999
A National Agenda for Cities and Metropolitan Areas
Revising the Federal Budget "CAPS"

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URBAN ECONOMIC POLICY

SUPPORTING THE U.S. CENSUS BUREAU'S REVISED CENSUS 2000 PLAN

WHEREAS, in February 1999, the United States Census Bureau unveiled a revised Census 2000 plan to comply with a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that a provision of the Census Act prohibits using scientific sampling methods to calculate the total population of each State for purposes of congressional apportionment; and

WHEREAS, the Census Bureau will make every effort to obtain an accurate count of the population for purposes of apportionment without statistical sampling; and

WHEREAS, the Bureau and independent experts believe that, notwithstanding an aggressive effort, the initial count of the population based only on direct counting methods will leave out millions of people, many of them living in America’s cities; and

WHEREAS, the Bureau will address the persistent problem of undercounting, as well as an anticipated over count, with an Accuracy and Coverage Evaluation (ACE) program designed to measure coverage in the first counting effort and correct under- and over counts using sampling and statistical estimation techniques; and

WHEREAS, all experts who have carefully studied the census have concluded that the Census Bureau cannot reduce the historic, disproportionate undercount of people of color and the poor without combining traditional counting methods and scientific sampling; and

WHEREAS, the revised Census 2000 plan incorporates a set of complex and time-sensitive operations designed to produce the most accurate results possible within legal deadlines; and

WHEREAS, any significant modifications to the Bureau’s plan at this stage of preparations could adversely affect the timing and effectiveness of census operations, resulting in higher levels of error and less accurate data; and

WHEREAS, the Bureau has taken steps to ensure a comprehensive database of housing units before the census starts, allowing local governments to review and correct address lists for their jurisdictions and to add newly-constructed units through Census Day; and

WHEREAS, the Bureau has determined that pre-census local review activities will be more effective than a 1990-style post census local review in ensuring a comprehensive Master Address File and accurate jurisdictional boundaries; and

WHEREAS, the Census Bureau’s determination as to which set of operations will produce the most accurate census possible and reduce the historic undercount should be given great deference by Congress and other external stakeholders,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors supports the revised Census 2000 plan, which supplements enhanced direct counting methods with statistical sampling to produce the most accurate census possible for purposes other than congressional apportionment; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors urges Congress to refrain from imposing additional requirements on the Census Bureau that may disrupt the timely collection of the most accurate data possible; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors urges the Census Bureau to continue an aggressive partnership program with local and tribal governments to ensure a comprehensive address list (including new construction) and accurate jurisdictional boundaries before the census starts and as counting operations proceed.

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