Prison Population In Census Data Questioned

Oswego, NY – Members of the group Correct the Count feel legislative districts are inaccurately drawn to reflect the population of a region.

Correct to Count says prison populations are factored into a community when a census is taken, causing the population of the region to be inflated.

Community groups, along with Assemblywoman Joan Christensen, and other elected officials met May 5 to promote a measure in the state legislature that would change where prisoners are counted.

Charlie Albanetti is with Citizen Action of New York. He says the bill would make it so prisoners are counted from their home address, not the prison's.

"That population would be reallocated to the home district, the home community and the districts would then be drawn that way. Because its only relevant to the data for the purpose of redistricting, census data as it is will not be modified and the vast majority of funding that comes from the census data is at the federal level is not affected what so ever," said Albanetti.

Albanetti says he's confident the proposal will pass the legislature, even though lawmakers are focused on the budget for the moment.