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Local Update of Census Address (LUCA)

The Census Bureau needs to know where people live in order to get a full count. Counties, cities, towns and villages are the best source of information about local housing, especially new construction and development that occurred since the last census in 2010.

To launch the 2020 Census process, the U.S. Census Bureau invited every municipal jurisdiction in New York, as well as New York State government, to participate in LUCA, the Local Update of Census Addresses.

New York was the only large state in the nation in which every county participated in the 2020 LUCA process. New York’s LUCA effort over the past year has identified 900,000 new addresses – far surpassing any other states’ efforts.

To be completely sure Census efforts are effective, LUCA will conduct a secondary sweep of the state to identify any new construction or group homes that should be included in the count.

Local Organizing Discussions
Local Organizing Discussions

Throughout 2018, members of Governor Cuomo’s Administration, local leaders, representatives from the U.S. Census Bureau, and community stakeholders, held meetings in municipalities across New York State to organize local efforts to ensure a full count in 2020.

Meetings were held in:

  • Jamestown
  • Plattsburgh
  • Oneonta
  • Oswego
  • Watertown
  • Troy
  • Kingston
  • Niagara Falls
  • Binghamton
  • Rochester
  • Canandaigua
  • Utica
  • Elmira
  • Syracuse

The Complete Count Commission held public hearings and events across the state to gain input and develop a comprehensive action plan for state, local and non-governmental organizations to ensure an accurate count for the 2020 Census.

Master Address File Additions
Master Address File Additions

New York State submitted a list of 360,000 addresses to federal authorities for the Census Bureau’s Master Address list to use in the 2020 count.

Under Governor Cuomo’s direction, the state compared the addresses contained in its real property tax records, Department of Motor Vehicles records, and records maintained by electrical utility companies to the Census Bureau Master Address list. This comparison of over 5.5 million records found 360,000 valid New York state addresses that were missing or incomplete in the Census Bureau’s Master Address File.

Companion efforts to assure a fair and accurate count have been undertaken by every county in the state and by New York City, resulting in 320,000 addresses found. Therefore, there could be up to approximately 700,000 “lost” addresses provided to the Census Bureau (some addresses may overlap with the state’s list).

Privacy remains a top priority in New York. No personal information aside from residential addresses were submitted to the Census Bureau. The effort to review addresses was managed by the state’s Data Center at the Department of Labor with assistance from the Geographic Program Office at the Office for Information Technology Service and Cornell University’s Department of Applied Demographics, as part of a multi-agency task force organized by Governor Cuomo.