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Census Bureau defends counting practices.

According to The Washington Post, a recent report from the Census Bureau challenges the call for monitoring the permanent address of inmates, to alleviate tensions over higher funding for areas with prisons, which can claim inmates as residents.

The U.S. Congress requested the report in conjunction with the 2006 Science, State, Justice, Commerce, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act. According to the recently released report, Congress asked the bureau to research the gathering of inmates' "permanent home of record" instead of their location of incarceration.

The Census Bureau found that interviewing every prisoner to determine their permanent address was not feasible and reviewing administrative records was not reliable. The bureau estimates the cost of $250 million to interview all of the inmates. The report also expressed doubts about completing the information within the specified census dates, especially because of the time it will take to verify the legitimacy of each address.

Activists say the current practice provides misleading demographics and distorts the size of electoral districts. As a result, more funds are sent to rural areas, instead of the cities where crime and drug involvement is more prevalent.
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Author:Leone, Lisa
Publication:Corrections Compendium
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:May 1, 2006
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