Montana Regains Second Congressional Seat With 2020 Census

Montana’s Population Grows to 1,085,407


April 28, 2021 | View PDF

Helena, MT – Montana will regain its second congressional seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, according to the 2020 Census state population count released by the U.S. Census Bureau.

The count reveals that Montana’s population grew from 989,415 people in 2010 to 1,085,407 people in 2020 – an increase of 95,992 residents over 2010, or nearly 10%.

“Thanks to the efforts of Montanans across the state, the 2020 Census shows what we’ve known to be true – Montana is a great place to live, work, and raise a family,” Gov. Greg Gianforte said.

“This is a great day for Montana. With a second congressional seat, Montanans will have another voice in Congress to work on their behalf,” Gov. Gianforte continued. “It’s critical we avoid the traps of partisanship and gerrymandering as our new district lines are drawn. Our new districts should be compact, keep our communities together, and make common sense.”

Montana had two congressional districts until 1993, when reapportionment based on the 1990 population count resulted in Montana losing its second seat.

The U.S. Census Bureau is expected to release sub-state level data later this year. That information will be used by the independent Montana Districting and Apportionment Commission to determine the boundaries for Montana’s two congressional districts and to redraw local legislative districts.

The federal government conducts the constitutionally mandated population count of all residents in the United States every 10 years. States help promote the importance of responding to the count.

“As the lead agency for the state’s census efforts, the Department of Commerce worked with partners across Montana to encourage Montanans to self-respond to the 2020 Census,” said Scott Osterman, Montana Department of Commerce director. “The updated state population count is the result of months of all-hands-on-deck statewide work to let Montanans know about the importance of being counted.”

Last year, the U.S. Census Bureau suspended field operations from March to early May in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In addition to forming the basis for congressional, legislative and school districts, census data are used to appropriate federal funding. This appropriation helps fund more than 300 programs for things like highway planning, health care, educational programs, and community infrastructure.

For more information about the 2020 Census, visit the Census and Economic Information Center at the Montana Department of Commerce at CEIC.MT.GOV.


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