Miami Population Study
Lambert conducted an in-depth analysis of the 2016 population estimate for the City of Miami and subsequently developed a new methodology to fill in the gaps of data the current estimate was unable to capture.
The City of Miami sought to estimate the city’s population and number of households for 2016 through a methodologically sound process. Population estimates are used to determine the state’s budget for a variety of programs and a small population increase can result in a significant financial benefit to city services. The estimate was both to support the University of Florida’s Bureau of Business & Economic Research (“BEBR”) as BEBR makes its own annual City of Miami estimate. The estimate would also provide the City the basis to engage and dispute BEBR on the University’s estimate should the ultimate BEBR’s 2016 estimate significantly vary from the city’s own.
While BEBR utilized the number of residential electric customers to estimate the number of occupied units, it had little or no source data to estimate how many people live in each unit in a city and what the change has been since the 2010 Census. Lambert developed a new methodology in which Miami-Dade County Water and Sewer Department (WASD) utilization data was analyzed at the water point to determine the change in water utilization by residential units between January 2010 and December 2015. The trend in water utilization was used as a proxy for change in persons per household.
As a result of the review of the analysis and the other information developed by BEBR, BEBR agreed to recommend to the State an increase of 2 percent in Population between 2015 and 2016 which was a full 100 basis points above its initial population estimate.