Who’s In? Who’s Out? New Section 203 Minority Language Determinations

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Yesterday, the Census Bureau released its latest minority language determinations under Section 203 of the Voting Rights Act. These determinations set the list of jurisdictions for which voting materials must be made available in languages other than English. From the press release:

The U.S. Census Bureau released today a list of 263 jurisdictions across the nation that must provide language assistance during elections for groups of citizens who are unable to speak or understand English adequately enough to participate in the electoral process. These determinations are pursuant to specifications, as amended in July 2006, in the Voting Rights Act.

The list, published in the Federal Register, identifies which jurisdictions are covered by Section 203 of the Voting Rights Act and must provide language assistance for Hispanic, American Indian and Alaska Native, and Asian language groups.

The Census Bureau has made these determinations following each decennial census since Section 203 was enacted in 1975. In 2006, Congress specified that the Census Bureau use statistics from the American Community Survey following the 2010 Census to conduct these determinations every five years. The determinations released today use data from the 2010-2014 American Community Survey 5-year estimates.

The 263 covered jurisdictions make up 3.3 percent of the 2,919 counties and 4,943 minor civil divisions that comprise the political subdivisions in the United States which were calculated for the Section 203 determinations. There are 68,800,641 eligible voting-age citizens in the covered jurisdictions, or 31.3 percent of the total U.S. citizen voting-age population.

The 2016 determinations found a total national population of 21,739,327 voting-age citizens subject to minority language assistance that reside in the 263 covered jurisdictions, compared with 19,209,431 and 248 jurisdictions in 2011, an increase of 13.2 percent. The determinations found a total of 16,621,136 Hispanics, 4,760,782 Asians, and 357,409 American Indian and Alaska Native voting-age citizens in the covered jurisdictions.

Here are the jurisdictions and languages covered by the new determinations:

State Year Jursidiction Language
AK 2017 Aleutians East Borough Filipino
AK 2017 Aleutians East Borough Hispanic
AK 2017 Aleutians East Borough Yup’ik
AK 2017 Aleutians West Census Area Aleut
AK 2017 Aleutians West Census Area Filipino
AK 2017 Bethel Census Area Inupiat
AK 2017 Bethel Census Area Yup’ik
AK 2017 Bristol Bay Borough Yup’ik
AK 2017 Dillingham Census Area Yup’ik
AK 2017 Kenai Peninsula Borough Yup’ik
AK 2017 Kodiak Island Borough Yup’ik
AK 2017 Lake and Peninsula Borough Yup’ik
AK 2017 Nome Census Area Inupiat
AK 2017 Nome Census Area Yup’ik
AK 2017 North Slope Borough Inupiat
AK 2017 Northwest Arctic Borough Inupiat
AK 2017 Southeast Fairbanks Census Area Alaskan Athabascan
AK 2017 Valdez-Cordova Census Area Alaskan Athabascan
AK 2017 Wade Hampton Census Area Inupiat
AK 2017 Wade Hampton Census Area Yup’ik
AK 2017 Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area Alaskan Athabascan
AK 2017 Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area Inupiat
AZ 2017 Apache County American Indian (Navajo)
AZ 2017 Coconino County American Indian (Navajo)
AZ 2017 Gila County American Indian (Apache)
AZ 2017 Graham County American Indian (Apache)
AZ 2017 Maricopa County Hispanic
AZ 2017 Navajo County American Indian (Navajo)
AZ 2017 Pima County Hispanic
AZ 2017 Pinal County American Indian (Apache)
AZ 2017 Santa Cruz County Hispanic
AZ 2017 Yuma County Hispanic
CA 2017 Alameda County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
CA 2017 Alameda County Filipino
CA 2017 Alameda County Hispanic
CA 2017 Alameda County Vietnamese
CA 2017 Colusa County Hispanic
CA 2017 Contra Costa County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
CA 2017 Contra Costa County Hispanic
CA 2017 Del Norte County American Indian (All other American Indian tribes)
CA 2017 Fresno County Hispanic
CA 2017 Glenn County Hispanic
CA 2017 Imperial County Hispanic
CA 2017 Kern County Hispanic
CA 2017 Kings County Hispanic
CA 2017 Los Angeles County Cambodian
CA 2017 Los Angeles County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
CA 2017 Los Angeles County Filipino
CA 2017 Los Angeles County Hispanic
CA 2017 Los Angeles County Korean
CA 2017 Los Angeles County Vietnamese
CA 2017 Madera County Hispanic
CA 2017 Merced County Hispanic
CA 2017 Monterey County Hispanic
CA 2017 Orange County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
CA 2017 Orange County Hispanic
CA 2017 Orange County Korean
CA 2017 Orange County Vietnamese
CA 2017 Riverside County Hispanic
CA 2017 Sacramento County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
CA 2017 Sacramento County Hispanic
CA 2017 San Benito County Hispanic
CA 2017 San Bernardino County Hispanic
CA 2017 San Diego County American Indian (All other American Indian tribes)
CA 2017 San Diego County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
CA 2017 San Diego County Filipino
CA 2017 San Diego County Hispanic
CA 2017 San Diego County Vietnamese
CA 2017 San Francisco County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
CA 2017 San Francisco County Hispanic
CA 2017 San Joaquin County Hispanic
CA 2017 San Mateo County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
CA 2017 San Mateo County Hispanic
CA 2017 Santa Barbara County Hispanic
CA 2017 Santa Clara County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
CA 2017 Santa Clara County Filipino
CA 2017 Santa Clara County Hispanic
CA 2017 Santa Clara County Vietnamese
CA 2017 Stanislaus County Hispanic
CA 2017 Statewide Hispanic
CA 2017 Tulare County Hispanic
CA 2017 Ventura County Hispanic
CO 2017 Conejos County Hispanic
CO 2017 Costilla County Hispanic
CO 2017 Denver County Hispanic
CO 2017 La Plata County American Indian (Ute)
CO 2017 Montezuma County American Indian (Ute)
CO 2017 Saguache County Hispanic
CT 2017 Bridgeport town Hispanic
CT 2017 East Hartford town Hispanic
CT 2017 Hartford town Hispanic
CT 2017 Kent town American Indian (All other American Indian tribes)
CT 2017 Meriden town Hispanic
CT 2017 New Britain town Hispanic
CT 2017 New Haven town Hispanic
CT 2017 New London town Hispanic
CT 2017 Waterbury town Hispanic
CT 2017 Windham town Hispanic
FL 2017 Broward County Hispanic
FL 2017 DeSoto County Hispanic
FL 2017 Hardee County Hispanic
FL 2017 Hendry County Hispanic
FL 2017 Hills Borough County Hispanic
FL 2017 Lee County Hispanic
FL 2017 Miami-Dade County Hispanic
FL 2017 Orange County Hispanic
FL 2017 Osceola County Hispanic
FL 2017 Palm Beach County Hispanic
FL 2017 Pinellas County Hispanic
FL 2017 Polk County Hispanic
FL 2017 Seminole County Hispanic
FL 2017 Statewide Hispanic
GA 2017 Gwinnett County Hispanic
HI 2017 Honolulu County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
HI 2017 Honolulu County Filipino
IA 2017 Buena Vista County Hispanic
IA 2017 Tama County American Indian (All other American Indian tribes)
ID 2017 Lincoln County Hispanic
IL 2017 Cook County Asian Indian
IL 2017 Cook County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
IL 2017 Cook County Hispanic
IL 2017 Kane County Hispanic
IL 2017 Lake County Hispanic
KS 2017 Finney County Hispanic
KS 2017 Ford County Hispanic
KS 2017 Grant County Hispanic
KS 2017 Haskell County Hispanic
KS 2017 Seward County Hispanic
MA 2017 Boston city Hispanic
MA 2017 Chelsea city Hispanic
MA 2017 Holyoke city Hispanic
MA 2017 Lawrence city Hispanic
MA 2017 Lowell city Cambodian
MA 2017 Lowell city Hispanic
MA 2017 Lynn city Hispanic
MA 2017 Malden city Chinese (including Taiwanese)
MA 2017 Quincy city Chinese (including Taiwanese)
MA 2017 Revere city Hispanic
MA 2017 Southbridge town Hispanic
MA 2017 Springfield city Hispanic
MA 2017 Worcester city Hispanic
MD 2017 Montgomery County Hispanic
MI 2017 Colfax township Hispanic
MI 2017 Fennville city Hispanic
MI 2017 Hamtramck city Bangladeshi
MS 2017 Attala County American Indian (Choctaw)
MS 2017 Jackson County American Indian (Choctaw)
MS 2017 Jones County American Indian (Choctaw)
MS 2017 Kemper County American Indian (Choctaw)
MS 2017 Leake County American Indian (Choctaw)
MS 2017 Neshoba County American Indian (Choctaw)
MS 2017 Newton County American Indian (Choctaw)
MS 2017 Noxubee County American Indian (Choctaw)
MS 2017 Scott County American Indian (Choctaw)
MS 2017 Winston County American Indian (Choctaw)
NE 2017 Colfax County Hispanic
NE 2017 Dakota County Hispanic
NE 2017 Dawson County Hispanic
NJ 2017 Bergen County Hispanic
NJ 2017 Bergen County Korean
NJ 2017 Camden County Hispanic
NJ 2017 Cumberland County Hispanic
NJ 2017 Essex County Hispanic
NJ 2017 Hudson County Hispanic
NJ 2017 Middlesex County Asian Indian
NJ 2017 Middlesex County Hispanic
NJ 2017 Passaic County Hispanic
NJ 2017 Union County Hispanic
NM 2017 Bernalillo County American Indian (Navajo)
NM 2017 Bernalillo County Hispanic
NM 2017 Chaves County Hispanic
NM 2017 Cibola County American Indian (Navajo)
NM 2017 Dona Ana County Hispanic
NM 2017 Guadalupe County Hispanic
NM 2017 Hidalgo County Hispanic
NM 2017 Lea County Hispanic
NM 2017 Lincoln County American Indian (Apache)
NM 2017 Luna County Hispanic
NM 2017 McKinley County American Indian (Navajo)
NM 2017 Mora County Hispanic
NM 2017 Otero County American Indian (Apache)
NM 2017 Rio Arriba County American Indian (Navajo)
NM 2017 San Juan County American Indian (Navajo)
NM 2017 San Juan County American Indian (Ute)
NM 2017 San Miguel County Hispanic
NM 2017 Sandoval County American Indian (Navajo)
NM 2017 Sandoval County American Indian (Pueblo)
NM 2017 Santa Fe County American Indian (Pueblo)
NM 2017 Socorro County American Indian (Navajo)
NM 2017 Socorro County Hispanic
NM 2017 Union County Hispanic
NM 2017 Valencia County Hispanic
NV 2017 Clark County Filipino
NV 2017 Clark County Hispanic
NY 2017 Bronx County Hispanic
NY 2017 Kings County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
NY 2017 Kings County Hispanic
NY 2017 Nassau County Hispanic
NY 2017 New York County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
NY 2017 New York County Hispanic
NY 2017 Queens County Asian Indian
NY 2017 Queens County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
NY 2017 Queens County Hispanic
NY 2017 Queens County Korean
NY 2017 Suffolk County Hispanic
NY 2017 Westchester County Hispanic
OK 2017 Texas County Hispanic
PA 2017 Berks County Hispanic
PA 2017 Central Falls city Hispanic
PA 2017 Lehigh County Hispanic
PA 2017 Pawtucket city Hispanic
PA 2017 Philadelphia County Hispanic
PA 2017 Providence city Hispanic
TX 2017 Andrews County Hispanic
TX 2017 Atascosa County Hispanic
TX 2017 Bailey County Hispanic
TX 2017 Bee County Hispanic
TX 2017 Bexar County Hispanic
TX 2017 Brooks County Hispanic
TX 2017 Caldwell County Hispanic
TX 2017 Calhoun County Hispanic
TX 2017 Cameron County Hispanic
TX 2017 Castro County Hispanic
TX 2017 Cochran County Hispanic
TX 2017 Crane County Hispanic
TX 2017 Crockett County Hispanic
TX 2017 Crosby County Hispanic
TX 2017 Culberson County Hispanic
TX 2017 Dallam County Hispanic
TX 2017 Dallas County Hispanic
TX 2017 Dawson County Hispanic
TX 2017 Deaf Smith County Hispanic
TX 2017 Dimmit County Hispanic
TX 2017 Duval County Hispanic
TX 2017 Ector County Hispanic
TX 2017 Edwards County Hispanic
TX 2017 El Paso County American Indian (Pueblo)
TX 2017 El Paso County Hispanic
TX 2017 Floyd County Hispanic
TX 2017 Fort Bend County Hispanic
TX 2017 Frio County Hispanic
TX 2017 Gaines County Hispanic
TX 2017 Garza County Hispanic
TX 2017 Glasscock County Hispanic
TX 2017 Hale County Hispanic
TX 2017 Hansford County Hispanic
TX 2017 Harris County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
TX 2017 Harris County Hispanic
TX 2017 Harris County Vietnamese
TX 2017 Hidalgo County Hispanic
TX 2017 Hockley County Hispanic
TX 2017 Hudspeth County Hispanic
TX 2017 Jeff Davis County Hispanic
TX 2017 Jim Hogg County Hispanic
TX 2017 Jim Wells County Hispanic
TX 2017 Jones County Hispanic
TX 2017 Karnes County Hispanic
TX 2017 Kenedy County Hispanic
TX 2017 Kinney County Hispanic
TX 2017 Kleberg County Hispanic
TX 2017 Knox County Hispanic
TX 2017 La Salle County Hispanic
TX 2017 Lamb County Hispanic
TX 2017 Live Oak County Hispanic
TX 2017 Lynn County Hispanic
TX 2017 Martin County Hispanic
TX 2017 Matagorda County Hispanic
TX 2017 Maverick County American Indian (All other American Indian tribes)
TX 2017 Maverick County Hispanic
TX 2017 McMullen County Hispanic
TX 2017 Medina County Hispanic
TX 2017 Menard County Hispanic
TX 2017 Midland County Hispanic
TX 2017 Moore County Hispanic
TX 2017 Nolan County Hispanic
TX 2017 Nueces County Hispanic
TX 2017 Ochiltree County Hispanic
TX 2017 Parmer County Hispanic
TX 2017 Pecos County Hispanic
TX 2017 Presidio County Hispanic
TX 2017 Reagan County Hispanic
TX 2017 Reeves County Hispanic
TX 2017 Refugio County Hispanic
TX 2017 San Patricio County Hispanic
TX 2017 Schleicher County Hispanic
TX 2017 Scurry County Hispanic
TX 2017 Sherman County Hispanic
TX 2017 Starr County Hispanic
TX 2017 Statewide Hispanic
TX 2017 Sterling County Hispanic
TX 2017 Sutton County Hispanic
TX 2017 Swisher County Hispanic
TX 2017 Tarrant County Hispanic
TX 2017 Tarrant County Vietnamese
TX 2017 Terry County Hispanic
TX 2017 Titus County Hispanic
TX 2017 Travis County Hispanic
TX 2017 Upton County Hispanic
TX 2017 Uvalde County Hispanic
TX 2017 Val Verde County Hispanic
TX 2017 Ward County Hispanic
TX 2017 Webb County Hispanic
TX 2017 Willacy County Hispanic
TX 2017 Winkler County Hispanic
TX 2017 Yoakum County Hispanic
TX 2017 Zapata County Hispanic
TX 2017 Zavala County Hispanic
UT 2017 San Juan County American Indian (Navajo)
UT 2017 San Juan County American Indian (Ute)
VA 2017 Fairfax County Hispanic
VA 2017 Fairfax County Vietnamese
WA 2017 Adams County Hispanic
WA 2017 Franklin County Hispanic
WA 2017 King County Chinese (including Taiwanese)
WA 2017 King County Vietnamese
WA 2017 Yakima County Hispanic
WI 2017 Arcadia city Hispanic
WI 2017 Madison town Hispanic
WI 2017 Milwaukee city Hispanic

The list also includes some key deletions: Los Angeles County, for example, is no longer covered for Japanese, Thai and Hindi, and numerous Arizona counties are no longer covered for Native American languages. Those jurisdictions – and others now with fewer languages or no coverage at all – will have to decide for themselves what, if any language assistance to provide.

It also remains to be seen how vigorously the new administration will enforce these requirements, which have long been a priority for the Department of Justice.

Obviously, these requirements have a tremendous impact on covered jurisdictions in terms of what their ballots and other voting materials look like and what resources are available to voters at the polls. You should expect to hear a lot – in many different languages! – in the weeks, months and years to come. Stay tuned …

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