(The Center Square) – New York received a double dose of bad news at the end of last week.
First, a U.S. Census Bureau report revealed the agency significantly overcounted the state’s population. Then a study by state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli essentially backed up the Census Bureau’s findings.
- By Steve Bittenbender | The Center Square contributor
- April 23rd, 2022
- The Roosevelt Island Daily News
On Thursday, the Census Bureau said that a review of its 2020 official count found it overcounted New York’s population by more than 625,000 people. So instead of 20.2 million living in New York, the total is less than 19.6 million.
New York still lost a congressional seat – if Minnesota had counted 26 fewer people, it would not have – after the 2020 Census; it’s possible a more accurate count could have led to a loss of two seats.
However, the Census Bureau noted that the “post-enumeration survey” would not change seat allotments in Congress for the next decade.
“These statistical products cannot be used to change the final census count but are useful in assessing the current census, determining how best to estimate the population between now and 2030, and helping to improve future censuses,” the agency stated.
New York’s 3.4% overcount percentage trailed the 6.8% of Hawaii, 5.4% of Delaware, and 3.8% of Minnesota.
Then on Friday, DiNapoli’s office issued a report that charted migration trends based on taxpayer data. From 2015 to 2019, the state saw a net loss of more than 140,000 part-time resident taxpayers.
“While part-year filers represent a small share of total New York State (personal income tax) filers, examining the characteristics of these part-year filers can provide insight into the mobility of taxpayers and, by extension, the economic competitiveness of New York,” the report stated.
DiNapoli’s report found that in 2019 alone, 71% of taxpayers leaving the state took all of their income with them. That led to a $120 million loss in revenue for the year, and over a full year, the impact would have been nearly $360 million.
The figures from both reports show that New York’s population essentially plateaued from 2010 when the Census reported the state was home to nearly 19.4 million people. However, they also do not consider the scores of taxpayers who left New York City and the state during the COVID-19 pandemic, when numerous businesses shut down in-person operations.
Upstate United Executive Director Justin Wilcox pointed out in a statement last week that even though the population has remained essentially the same, the state’s budget grew by more than 30% over the decade. That’s “simply unsustainable,” the nonpartisan economic growth interest group’s leader said.
“Now, more than ever, we need our elected leaders to reject measures that would drive up costs and drive out more New Yorkers,” Wilcox added. “Everything Albany does should be focused on growing our communities and our economy.
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