Planning Staff Prepares for 2020 Census

Knoxville-Knox County Planning stores and manages a master address list for all of Knox County, including the City of Knoxville and Town of Farragut – that list is comprised of 265,000 unique addresses.

Among several key reasons for keeping the list updated and correct is the coordination of the Local Update of Census Addresses (LUCA) operation. This program provides governmental entities the opportunity to review and comment on the U.S. Census Bureau’s residential address list for their jurisdictions. This is important because the Census Bureau needs current and correct addresses to reach all households in its annual American Community Survey of population and its decennial census.

Working closely with the City of Knoxville and Knox County, Knoxville-Knox County Planning recently completed the LUCA review for the upcoming 2020 census. Using Planning's master address list, as well as address data obtained from utility companies and other local agencies, a large number of addresses in the Census Bureau files were identified as missing or incorrect. Specifically, Planning's effort included:

  • 4,740 missing addresses  added to the Bureau's list,
  • 2,050 outdated/non-existent addresses removed, and
  • 4,571 address errors corrected.

The data-cleaning effort was challenging and labor intensive, but it is so critical for high-quality Census work. Complete and accurate counts of Knox County’s population are important because it affects reapportionment of local, state, and federal representation districts. It also helps ensure the County receives correct allocation of federal funding for programs like Medicaid, Medicare Part B, SNAP, and the National School Lunch Program, to name a few. In fact, among the top-16 federal funding programs, allocation to our area is estimated at $1,981 per person each year – so every person counts.