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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on July 10, 2008 2:34 PM. The previous post in this blog was Iran: "We will destroy you.... The next post in this blog is Cutbacks on tap at the O. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



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Thursday, July 10, 2008

U.S. Census: Portland State overstates Portland population

For a while now, we've been watching the population within the city limits of Portland as part of our ongoing monitoring of the frightening amount of debt per capita being incurred by the City Council. For the population figures, we have been going to the city's official source, which is a planning institute of some kind at Portland State University.

As you can see from this report (page 18), the PSU folks say that as of a year ago -- July 1, 2007 -- the city's population was 568,380. But today the U.S. Census Bureau released its own estimate, and it is only 550,396. That's a difference of 17,984, or around 3.2 percent.

Indeed, according to the Census, all of the PSU population figures for the last several years have been overstated. Here we have compiled the tale of the tape:

July 1 of YearPortland StateCensus Bureau

For debt per capita calculation purposes, we'll stick with the PSU numbers as our base, at least for now. We like the fact that the figures in our debt clock all came from the city itself. But keep in mind that the real population figure may be a little lower, and the debt per capita thus a little higher, than what's shown on the clock.

Comments (18)

As Samuel Clemens said, there are three types of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics. The difference between the census estimate and the PRC estimate lies in the methodology. The Census uses a housing-based method, looking at new construction, including permits and mobile home placements; based on that construction, it uses its data for estimating household population. The Census estimates are than checked against "other analysis" (which, I'd guess is stuff like PRC data). PRC, on the other hand, looks at natural growth (births and deaths) as well as migration; PRC's data is tax exemptions, school enrollment, Medicare enrollment, and the like. Its estimates are then checked against housing models.

Why the difference? In my uneducated and completely spectulative opinion ... I guess the following:
(1) The apartment household size is smaller than the single-family residence household size; when the Census creates its estimate, Portland's family-apartment communities are under-represented (i.e. the Pearl is not just singles and DINKs).
(2) Portland houses are being sub-divided into multiple residences very quickly, but these are not permitted new construction. Friend of mine just divided his basement into two finished bedrooms to rent out; this growth probably isn't represented.

Overall, I'd wager that PRC is probably closer to the "real" number because it looks at more "local" factors that represent real individuals (enrollment) rather than places for individuals.

Sorry: cites. Census methodology is explained here:

PRC methodolgy is in the report on its page 4, pdf page 6.

Shall we really trust the data of a Bush era government bureau? Would they falsify data from a blue state thus affecting its funding and districting? Nah, that would never happen!

there is no "real" number. everybody isn't counted. both methods use a significant amount of statistical inference to determine how many people live here.

so, either number is both valid and invalid.

if i had to pick one, i'd go with the PSU number.

I don't know how long PRC had been doing what it does. However, if it's been around a while one could check PRC's estimates against the decennial Census. That would provide some indication of how much the Census Bureau and the PRC "true up."

Shall we really trust the data of a Bush era government bureau?

Or should we trust the PSU school of "urban planning," which would have an enormous incentive to show that the city's population is increasing due to the supposed success of its eco-density policies?

It's a tossup.

PRC has been making such estimates since at least the early 1970's. Their offices were across the hall from me for my first 10 or so years at PSU. Whether their estimates are more or less reliable than the Census Bureau depends on what methodology you choose. The PRC is solely about Oregon and so there is some incentive to provide fairly accurate estimates based on many factors. I know that their data feed to the US Census Bureau in decentennial years. I don't know about the interdecade estimates.

by the census bureau numbers, Portland lost almost 6,000 residents between 2003 and 2004. I'm thinking Washington DC's numbers are more likely wrong than PSU's.

"As Samuel Clemens said, there are three types of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics."

Who was by the way quoting British Prime Minister, Benjamin Disraeli.

Yes I know picky, picky, picky.

And to stay on point I am more inclined to agree with the PSU numbers. But then I am biased, I got one of my degrees there.

Well sh t you just tipped off the city on how they can lower the debt per capita.

All they need do is pad the population count a hundred thousand more and wa la,
there's room for more borrowing.

Wow! That's almost exactly what they've been doing with Urban Renewal borrowing.
Padding the revenue projections to allow greater borrowing capacity.

Or should we trust the PSU school of "urban planning," which would have an enormous incentive to show that the city's population is increasing due to the supposed success of its eco-density policies?

It's a tossup.

Good point, Jack. I guess John Q Statistic can get so dazzled by the sheer magnitude of Bush & Friend's corruption that its easy to forget the old everyday "smalltime" shenanigans. Seems almost quaint...almost.

It's all pretty sketchy.

Yeah, Ken pretty much nails the discrepancy.

In 2003-2004, PSU says we grew by 5k residents. But the Census Bureau says we shrank by 6k residents.

In every other year, PSU and the Census basically agree on the amount of growth.

Obviously, something unique happened in 2003-2004 that caused one methodology to go one way - and the other to go the other way.

It'd sure be interesting to know what that was.

Here are the rest of the Census numbers (all July 1) since the last count:

2002 - 539,835
2001 - 535,624
2000 - 529,948

Here are Portland State's:

2002 - 538,180
2001 - 536,240
2000 - 531,600

The official Census number as of 4/1/00 was 529,121.

It appears that PSU has consistently been over the Census, ever since the last actual counting.

So my question is - how come Sam Adams (and others) keep talking about how the city will need to absorb 1,000,000 more people (or 500,000 or whatever the SCARY number is - my memory fails me at the moment) when we're seeing population growth of around 5,000 per year?

There are different methodologies used to count the homeless in a census. One is actual enumeration; another is a statistical estimate based on sampling; still another is to build in a fudge factor and use it. Why doesn't someone just ask PSU for an explanation. I'm sure they'd be happy to oblige.

PSU is surely overstating their numbers...anything to inflate the numbers to make it appear their forced density goals are successful.

Portland has become a socialist city, like SFO, now way in hell I would move back. Many others...(except the homeless looking for handouts)...share the same view.

Many, including myself will move out, to a more tax friendly state...Nevada, Utah, Wyoming will see great growth.

"Nevada, Utah, Wyoming will see great growth."

I ain't complainin...goodbye, so long...more beautiful Oregon for me to enjoy.

In Vino Veritas

Lange, Pinot Gris 2015
Kiona, Lemberger 2014
Willamette Valley, Pinot Gris 2015
Aix, Rosé de Provence 2016
Marchigüe, Cabernet 2013
Inazío Irruzola, Getariako Txakolina Rosé 2015
Maso Canali, Pinot Grigio 2015
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Kirkland, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016
Cantele, Salice Salentino Reserva 2013
Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2013
Avissi, Prosecco
Cleto Charli, Lambrusco di Sorbara Secco, Vecchia Modena
Pique Poul, Rosé 2016
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Rosé 2016
Stoller, Pinot Noir Rosé 2016
Chehalem, Inox Chardonnay 2015
The Four Graces, Pinot Gris 2015
Gascón, Colosal Red 2013
Cardwell Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot 2013
Della Terra, Anonymus
Willamette Valley, Dijon Clone Chardonnay 2013
Wraith, Cabernet, Eidolon Estate 2012
Januik, Red 2015
Tomassi, Valpolicella, Rafaél, 2014
Sharecropper's Pinot Noir 2013
Helix, Pomatia Red Blend 2013
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2013
Locations, Spanish Red Wine
Locations, Argentinian Red Wine
La Antigua Clásico, Rioja 2011
Shatter, Grenache, Maury 2012
Argyle, Vintage Brut 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16 Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2014
Benton Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
Primarius, Pinot Gris 2015
Januik, Merlot 2013
Napa Cellars, Cabernet 2013
J. Bookwalter, Protagonist 2012
LAN, Rioja Edicion Limitada 2011
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Rutherford 2009
Denada Cellars, Cabernet, Maipo Valley 2014
Marchigüe, Cabernet, Colchagua Valley 2013
Oberon, Cabernet 2014
Hedges, Red Mountain 2012
Balboa, Rose of Grenache 2015
Ontañón, Rioja Reserva 2015
Three Horse Ranch, Pinot Gris 2014
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
Nelms Road, Merlot 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Pinot Gris 2014
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2012
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2013
Villa Maria, Sauvignon Blanc 2015
G3, Cabernet 2013
Chateau Smith, Cabernet, Washington State 2014
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16
Willamette Valley, Rose of Pinot Noir, Whole Clusters 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Ca' del Baio Barbaresco Valgrande 2012
Goodfellow, Reserve Pinot Gris, Clover 2014
Lugana, San Benedetto 2014
Wente, Cabernet, Charles Wetmore 2011
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
King Estate, Pinot Gris 2015
Adelsheim, Pinot Gris 2015
Trader Joe's, Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley 2015
La Vite Lucente, Toscana Red 2013
St. Francis, Cabernet, Sonoma 2013
Kendall-Jackson, Pinot Noir, California 2013
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2013
Erath, Pinot Noir, Estate Selection 2012
Abbot's Table, Columbia Valley 2014
Intrinsic, Cabernet 2014
Oyster Bay, Pinot Noir 2010
Occhipinti, SP68 Bianco 2014
Layer Cake, Shiraz 2013
Desert Wind, Ruah 2011
WillaKenzie, Pinot Gris 2014
Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2013
Des Amis, Rose 2014
Dunham, Trautina 2012
RoxyAnn, Claret 2012
Del Ri, Claret 2012
Stoppa, Emilia, Red 2004
Primarius, Pinot Noir 2013
Domaines Bunan, Bandol Rose 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Deer Creek, Pinot Gris 2015
Beaulieu, Rutherford Cabernet 2013
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
King Estate, Pinot Gris, Backbone 2014
Oberon, Napa Cabernet 2013
Apaltagua, Envero Carmenere Gran Reserva 2013
Chateau des Arnauds, Cuvee des Capucins 2012
Nine Hats, Red 2013
Benziger, Cabernet, Sonoma 2012
Roxy Ann, Claret 2012
Januik, Merlot 2012
Conundrum, White 2013
St. Francis, Sonoma Cabernet 2012

The Occasional Book

Marc Maron - Waiting for the Punch
Phil Stanford - Rose City Vice
Kenneth R. Feinberg - What is Life Worth?
Kent Haruf - Our Souls at Night
Peter Carey - True History of the Kelly Gang
Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games
Amy Stewart - Girl Waits With Gun
Philip Roth - The Plot Against America
Norm Macdonald - Based on a True Story
Christopher Buckley - Boomsday
Ryan Holiday - The Obstacle is the Way
Ruth Sepetys - Between Shades of Gray
Richard Adams - Watership Down
Claire Vaye Watkins - Gold Fame Citrus
Markus Zusak - I am the Messenger
Anthony Doerr - All the Light We Cannot See
James Joyce - Dubliners
Cheryl Strayed - Torch
William Golding - Lord of the Flies
Saul Bellow - Mister Sammler's Planet
Phil Stanford - White House Call Girl
John Kaplan & Jon R. Waltz - The Trial of Jack Ruby
Kent Haruf - Eventide
David Halberstam - Summer of '49
Norman Mailer - The Naked and the Dead
Maria Dermoȗt - The Ten Thousand Things
William Faulkner - As I Lay Dying
Markus Zusak - The Book Thief
Christopher Buckley - Thank You for Smoking
William Shakespeare - Othello
Joseph Conrad - Heart of Darkness
Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
Cheryl Strayed - Tiny Beautiful Things
Sara Varon - Bake Sale
Stephen King - 11/22/63
Paul Goldstein - Errors and Omissions
Mark Twain - A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
Steve Martin - Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life
Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
Kent Haruf - Plainsong
Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
Rudyard Kipling - Kim
Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
Fran Cannon Slayton - When the Whistle Blows
Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
Jenny Lawson - Let's Pretend This Never Happened
J.D. Salinger - Franny and Zooey
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
Timothy Egan - The Big Burn
Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 8
At this date last year: 0
Total run in 2018: 10
In 2017: 113
In 2016: 155
In 2015: 271
In 2014: 401
In 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269

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