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Small Area Income & Poverty Estimates

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SAIPE Challenge Procedures for Estimates

Challenges must be received within 90 days of the original release date.

The challenge period for the 2007 estimates ends March 10, 2009. Challenges received after this date will not be considered.

The Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates (SAIPE) program produces estimates of median household income for counties and states, and estimates of poverty for school districts, counties and states. These estimates are based on statistical models that use decennial census data, household survey data, administrative records data and population estimates. Since these are statistical estimates, they contain statistical error.  Statistical errors are inherent to the estimation process and cannot be corrected. 

A challenge will result in a revised estimate if either of the following non-statistical errors is found:

  1. The U.S. Census Bureau made an error in processing input data or running the estimation models/programs.
  2. The U.S. Census Bureau made an error in preparing or processing information to define geographic boundaries (e.g., school district boundaries).

Please note that in cases where the Census Bureau processed the information correctly but was provided incorrect input data, the Census Bureau will make reasonable efforts to provide corrected estimates, but corrections of this sort cannot be guaranteed.

If you believe that a SAIPE program estimate is incorrect, a school district, county or state official can request information from the Census Bureau about how to challenge its SAIPE estimates.  This information is available by contacting the Small Area Estimates Branch of the U.S. Census Bureau by:




Please include your name, mailing address, telephone number, email address and organization affiliation.

The Census Bureau will mail or email a Review Guide that describes the procedures to follow to formally challenge SAIPE estimates produced by the Census Bureau.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau  |  Small Area Income & Poverty Estimates  |  Page Last Modified: January 02, 2009