"Scattered among the nooks and crannies of this massive document are the plans for the multiple agencies in the nation's decentralized statistical system. And within these plans are disparate items that suggest that, slowly, the federal government is taking steps to improve our ability to grasp the demographic, economic, and social dimensions of the nation's regions and communities.
The remarkable thing about our statistical system is that, when you realize it's tracking about 310 million people and a $14 trillion economy, it's really inexpensive, a few billion a year, on average. With the exception of the 2010 Census process, the proposed improvements that I'm about to describe are ridiculously cheap, well under the cost of one F-35 fighter jet."
Some of the upgrades include an expansion of the sample size included in the American Community Survey and a revision of the way the federal government calculates poverty.