A Multi-Decennial Census Data Set for NJ, 2010 and 2020 (and More): A New Jersey State Policy Lab Offering

March 11, 2022

by Maia de la Calle and Michael L. Lahr, Rutgers Economic Advisory Service, R/ECON for New Jersey State Policy Lab

The New Jersey State Policy Lab started operating when some of the first local-level data were released from the 2020 Census. It, therefore, seemed somewhat natural for the Lab to produce a census-based product that likely would appeal to governments within the State of New Jersey. The idea was not simply to reproduce the 2020 data from the Bureau of the Census in a more easily read format (Microsoft Excel) but also to provide some historical reference and show change across New Jersey’s counties and municipalities since the last decennial census (2010).

Decennial censuses contain a cacophony of data, and any report—even one just composed of data—should have a theme. As members of R/Econ, our purview with respect to Census data ought to be a set of items that have significance to socio-economics. In this regard, a data set like this and produced by us should report on matters like labor-force participation, employment by industry, the nature of the commute to work, and household income. Alone, however, such indicators are of limited use to municipalities. So, when reviewing some familiar reports based upon Census data, we identified other socio-economic measures relevant to the state’s localities.[1] 

These reports include basic socio-demographic information, like population and population change, minority population shares, family structure, the age structure of area populations, fertility rates, migration propensities, and household formation rates. In addition to income and job information, they also supply information on educational achievement. But they also have other measures in common—those that focus on income inequality: poverty rates, the extent to which housing was crowded, and the extent to which housing costs comprised an excessive amount of household income. The above all combine to comprise what we deem to be a desirable socio-economic theme. We add to them a few more measures that we believe can yield important insight into public finances and service provision in New Jersey’s communities: the dependency ratio (the share of the population both under 18 and over 65), share of population that does not speak English “very well,” and a set focused on child welfare—families with children by family structure, child poverty, and poverty across family structure for families with children.

Below is the list of 26 tables in the census data file. The “A” table contains the information for each of New Jersey’s 21 counties, and the “B” table contains the same information for the state’s current set of 565 municipalities.[2]

  • Table 1. Population Count: 1990, 2000, 2010, and 2020
  • Table 2. Black or African American alone (non-Hispanic) population: 1990, 2000, 2010, and 2020
  • Table 3. Hispanic or Latino (any race) population: 1990, 2000, 2010, and 2020
  • Table 4. Population by Selected Age Groups: 2010 and 2019
  • Table 5. Age Dependency Ratio: 2010 and 2019
  • Table 6. Inter- and Intra-State Migration Flows: 2017, 2018, and 2019
  • Table 7. Birth Count by Maternal Age: 2000, 2010, 2020
  • Table 8. Household Count and Characteristics:  2000, 2010, and 2019
  • Table 9.  Families With Children (under 18 years) by Family Structure:  2010 and 2019
  • Table 10. Family Structure by Race/Ethnicity: 2010 and 2019
  • Table 11. Population (5 years and over) Speaking English Less Than “Very Well”: 2000, 2010, and 2019
  • Table 12. Educational Attainment for Persons 25 Years and Over: 2000, 2010, and 2019
  • Table 13.  Labor Force Participation by Sex: 2000, 2010, and 2019
  • Table 14. Labor Force Participation Rate by Age: 2010 and 2019
  • Table 15. Employment by Industry: 2010 and 2019
  • Table 16. Means of Transportation to Work (Workers 16 Years and Over): 2010 and 2019
  • Table 17. Average Commuting Time by Means of Transportation: 2010 and 2019
  • Table 18. Median Household Income: 1999, 2010, and 2019
  • Table 19. Number in Poverty and Poverty Rate: 1999, 2012, and 2019
  • Table 20. Number in Poverty and Poverty Rate by Race/Ethnicity: 1999, 2012, and 2019
  • Table 21. Number of Children in Poverty & Poverty Rate: 1999, 2010, and 2019
  • Table 22. Poverty Across Family Structures for Families with Children Under 18 Years: 2010 and 2019
  • Table 23. Housing Occupancy Status: 2000, 2010, and 2020
  • Table 24. Housing Occupancy by Tenure: 2000, 2010, and 2019
  • Table 25. Persons Per Room in Occupied Housing: 2000, 2010, and 2019
  • Table 26. Shelter Poverty (>35% of Income Spent on Housing) by Tenure:1999, 2010, 2019

[1] Ghelfi Linda, John B. Cromartie, Michael L. Lahr, and Timothy S. Parker. (1993). Rural Conditions and Trends: Special Census Issue. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service. 4(3) Fall.

Glickman, Norman J., Michael L. Lahr, and Elvin K. Wyly. (1996). State of the Nation’s Cities: America’s Changing Urban Life. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Wyly, Elvin K., Norman J. Glickman, and Michael L. Lahr. (1998). “A top 10 list of things to know about American cities.” Cityscape, 3(3), 7-32

[2] Prior to 2013, when Princeton Township and Princeton Borough merged, there had been 566 municipalities in New Jersey.

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