OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — The 2020 census data came out on Thursday and it has implications for redistricting in congress and the legislature.
Nebraska's urban areas grew significantly over the last decade while many rural areas lost people.
Sarpy County, by far, saw the most growth of any Nebraska county with a 20% jump.
Douglas and Lancaster counties were next, jumping by 13% each.
The big change seems to be the number of people who are moving into these areas. A little more than half of the state's population lives in those three counties.
The cities Bellevue and Papillion had the most growth at 28% and Omaha grew by nearly 20% with nearly half a million people now living in the city.
The UNO Center for Public Affairs Research also pointed out another threshold for the eight-county metro area.
Iowa's population grew by nearly 5% which brings the population to about 3.1 million. As for where everyone is living, Iowa saw similar trends to Nebraska with a lot of growth near the largest cities. Sixty-eight counties in rural areas saw a drop in population. Pottawattamie County did grow, but not by much.
3 News Now reporter, Jon Kipper broke down how the Nebraska legislative and congressional districts might be affected:
- The three biggest counties were 31% of the state's population in the 1950s. Now, the three biggest counties make up 56% of the state's population. That's also an increase since the 2010 census when the 'Big 3' counties stood at 52.6% of the population.
- Kipper also pointed out that the congressional districts saw population changes with the Eastern part of the state gaining people and Nebraska's third district, in the less densely populated western side of the state, had a slight decline in population.
- Nebraska's First Congressional District (including Lincoln) grew by 8%
- The Second Congressional District (including Omaha) grew by 15%
- The Third Congressional District (Western Nebraska) shrunk by 1.3%
- Unicameral districts with the most gain in population:
- No. 39 - Linehan - 59,542 - grew 49% (suburbs west of Omaha)
- No. 49 - Day - 52,488 - grew 31% (suburbs southwest of Omaha)
- No. 10 - DeBoer- 52,319 - grew 30k (Northwest Omaha, Bennington)
- Unicameral districts that saw the biggest population decrease:
- No. 47 - Erdman - 33,841 - Down 15.5% (Panhandle)
- No. 42 - Groene - 34,676 - Down 13% (North Platte area)
- No. 44 - Hughes - 34,700 - Down 13% (SW Nebraska)
- No. 43 - Brewer - 35,343 - Down 12% (Sandhills)
- No. 40 - Gragert - 35,576 - Down11% (NE Nebraska)
Despite these big increases, the rest of the state outside of these three counties, lost population as a whole.— Jon Kipper (@jonnykip21) August 12, 2021
The next highest county that gained population is Buffalo County (Kearney) at 8.6%, about 4,000 people.
From there: Hall (G.I.) , Saunders (Wahoo), Platte (Columbus). https://t.co/DiqJBfYWIH
Congressional Redistricting— Jon Kipper (@jonnykip21) August 12, 2021
NE-1 (Lincoln/Fortenberry) grew by 8%
NE-2 (Omaha/Bacon) grew by 15%
NE-3 (W. Neb/Smith) decreased by 1%
Going to have to make NE-3 much bigger in size and decrease NE-1 and/or NE-2 in size to even it out.
Districts w/ least gain— Jon Kipper (@jonnykip21) August 12, 2021
D-47 (Panhandle/Erdman) -16%
D-42 (North Platte/Groene) - 13%
D-44 (SW Neb./Hughes) - 13%
3 other rural districts have more than 10% decrease in population - -these were in the NE, SW and western parts of Nebraska.
So it's quite clear that the bigger counties are going to get more senators and the rural areas of the state are going to lose senators.— Jon Kipper (@jonnykip21) August 13, 2021
What nobody knows is how many are added/decreased & specifically where those happening.
The Unicameral will redistrict next month.