Adjusting the Census for Recent Immigrants: The Chiles Amendment

Headnotes: 

The Chiles Amendment authorizes the President to order a special census pursuant to 13 U.S.C. § 196, or to use some other method of obtaining a revised estimate of the population, whenever he determines that the population of a particular area is significantly affected by an influx of immigrants within six months of a regular decennial census date.

The Chiles Amendment was intended simply to remove an unfairly arbitrary element from the census, and not to serve as an indirect means of aiding jurisdictions affected by large numbers of recent immigrants. Accordingly, the entire population of significantly affected jurisdictions must be estimated, in order to take into account both the recent influx of immigrants and any offsetting recent population decline.

Updated July 9, 2014