On December 8, 2016 the U.S. Census Bureau released five‐year American Community Survey (ACS) estimates for the combined years of 2011 through 2015, making available social, economic, housing and demographic statistics for Nebraska’s Legislative Districts. Also available are estimates for every community and county in Nebraska and the nation.
The charts and tables in this report are based on the Legislative District boundaries for the 103rd Legislature that were approved by the Legislature in 2011 and were based on data from the 2010 Census. Because of changes in Legislative District boundaries, the charts and tables in this report are not directly comparable to prior reports using the previous boundaries.
The ACS is an ongoing, nation-wide survey conducted every month. Each year approximately 1 in 40 persons are sampled. During the past 5 years in Nebraska, there has been an average of about 48,000 persons interviewed per year. While this annual number of interviews is adequate for state-level summaries, for smaller levels of geography like legislative districts and most Nebraska counties, only 5- year data are available for analysis.
The 5-year estimates are period estimates. They are based on a rolling national sample survey mailed monthly from 2011 through 2015. By pooling several years of survey responses, the ACS can generate detailed statistical portraits of smaller geographies that represent the characteristics of the population over the specific data collection period. The Census Bureau issues new sets of these five-year estimates every year, permitting users to track trends in even the smallest of areas over time. This is the fourth set of fiveyear estimates available using the 2011 legislative boundaries.
The ACS estimates published are not related to the 2010 Census population counts that were released in 2011. The ACS complements the decennial count and provides estimates of population characteristics that are far more detailed than the basic demographic information that has been released from the 2010 Census.
The main function of the decennial census is to provide counts of people for the purpose of congressional apportionment and legislative redistricting. As a complete count of the population, the 2010 Census data are critical for knowing how many people live in the United States, where they live and their basic demographic information such as race, sex and Hispanic origin. The ACS estimates, on the other hand, are based on a sample survey of the nation and are intended to describe the social and economic characteristics of the U.S. population, not to provide population counts.
As a result, the ACS does not provide official counts of the population in between censuses. Instead, the Census Bureau’s Population Estimates Program will continue to be the official source for annual population totals, by age, race, Hispanic origin, and sex.
For areas with populations of 65,000 or more (including the state of Nebraska; Douglas, Lancaster, and Sarpy Counties; and the cities of Lincoln and Omaha) the Census Bureau has produced 1‐year ACS estimates every year since 2005. These areas require only one year of survey responses to produce reliable estimates.
Because it is a survey based on a sample of the population rather than the entire population, the ACS produces estimates, not actual counts. Since it is based on a sample, the ACS also is subject to sampling error. To aid data users, the Census Bureau calculates and publishes a margin of error for every ACS estimate it produces. These margins of error are not included in the following tables.
(CPAR), Center for Public Affairs Research, "Selected Characteristics for Nebraska Legislative Districts from the 2011-2015 American Community Survey" (2016). Publications since 2000. 475.