Monday, March 02, 2009

Charlotte giving lags behind state

Did you know charitable giving in the Charlotte area lags behind the overall giving rate in North Carolina?
Did you know that Wake County is growing so much faster than Mecklenburg that it is projected to be larger by 2020 -- and both will gain seats in the next legislature?
Did you know the Piedmont Crescent now extends from Greenville to Shelby?

Those were among the facts tossed out Sunday by Prof. Ferrel Guillory at the 2009 N.C. Editorial Writers Conference at UNC Chapel Hill. I've been going to those conferences for more than a quarter-century; this one was the first I can recall that was shortened by a late-winter snow storm, but during a discussion of urban matters Guillory, a former newsman who teaches journalism and runs the Program in Public Life at UNC-CH, talked about an array of findings that he and his outfit turned up in their research on how North Carolina has changed.

*One that caught my eye was a finding from a report he had done on charitable giving trends in urban areas. Using IRS data from 2005 examining adjusted gross income and amounts contributed by those who itemized contributions, he found that givers in the Charlotte metropolitan region give 4 percent of their adjusted gross income. That's more than givers in the Triangle donate (3.7 percent), but less than givers in the Triad region (Greensboro, High Point, Winston-Salem) give (4.74 percent) and less than all N.C. donors give (4.38 percent of income).
On the other hand, measured in the size of contributions, Charlotte donors give more ($4,336) than average N.C. donors ($4,230) and Triangle area donors ($4,131), but still less than Triad donors ($4,438).


*Another that got my attention was North Carolina's growth rate. Nothing really new here. We've long known that census numbers project that Wake would someday pass Mecklenburg in population. In fact, it may not have happened as fast as once projected, but current numbers project that Wake will have 1.13 million people in 2020 while Mecklenburg will have 1.1 million.

That's a lot of folks, but North Carolina has grown enormously, having already absorbed a population the current size of South Carolina since 1970 (we were about 5 million then, an estimated 9 million or so now) and projections are that we'll grow to 12.5 million by 2030.

*The significant population growth will manifest itself in big changes in political representation in Raleigh, with the largest urban areas gaining seats. Guillory said Wake and Mecklenburg will each likely gain one more Senate seat and two more House seats after the next reapportionment, following the 2010 census.

*The Piedmont Crescent long was defined as that heavily populated area curving from Raleigh through Greensboro and Winston-Salem down to Charlotte and Gastonia. Current numbers show that the Piedmont Crescent has grown wider and longer -- stretching as far east as Pitt County, where Greenville has grown dramatically -- and as far west as Cleveland County.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Wake is growing faster than Mecklenburg. Wake also has 50% more land area than Mecklenburg-approximately 750 sq miles to Mecklenburg's approximately 500 sq miles. So no wonder that it will soon have more people.

Anonymous said...

"Did you know charitable giving in the Charlotte area lags behind the overall giving rate in North Carolina?"

Do I believe I'd have to see the hard facts before I'd buy it? Yep. Do I suspect there's a lot of doctoring to support that "conclusion"? Yep. Do I suspect they left out a large portion of the Charlotte metro area (you know, the part that's in another state)? Certainly.

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