Data Dictionary: ACS 2005 -- 2007 (3-Year Estimates)
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Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Table: B22009. Aggregate Food Stamp Benefits In The Past 12 Months (In 2007 Inflation-Adjusted Dollars) For Households [1]
Universe: Universe: Households
Table Details
B22009. Aggregate Food Stamp Benefits In The Past 12 Months (In 2007 Inflation-Adjusted Dollars) For Households
Universe: Universe: Households
Relevant Documentation:
Excerpt from: Social Explorer; U.S. Census Bureau; 2005-2007 American Community Survey 3-Year Summary File: Technical Documentation.
 
Aggregate
An aggregate is the sum of the values for each of the elements in the universe. For example, aggregate household income is the sum of the incomes of all households in a given geographic area. Means are derived by dividing the aggregate by the appropriate universe. When an aggregate used as a numerator is rounded in the detailed (base) tables, the rounded value is used for the calculation of the mean.
Excerpt from: Social Explorer; U.S. Census Bureau; 2005-2007 American Community Survey 3-Year Summary File: Technical Documentation.
 
Food Stamp Benefits
The data on Food Stamp benefits were obtained from Housing Question 15 in the 2007 American Community Survey. The Food Stamp Act of 1977 defines this federally-funded program as one intended to "permit low-income households to obtain a more nutritious diet" (from Title XIII of Public Law 95-113, The Food Stamp Act of 1977, declaration of policy). Food purchasing power is increased by providing eligible households with coupons or cards that can be used to purchase food. The Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) administers the Food Stamp Program through state and local welfare offices. The Food Stamp Program is the major national income support program to which all low-income and low-resource households, regardless of household characteristics, are eligible. The questions on participation in the Food Stamp Program were designed to identify households in which one or more of the current members received food stamps during the past 12 months.
Limitation of the Data
Beginning in 2006, the population in group quarters (GQ) is included in the ACS. Many types of GQ populations have food stamp distributions that are very different from the household population. The inclusion of the GQ population could therefore have a noticeable impact on the food stamp distribution. This is particularly true for areas with a substantial GQ population.
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Question/Concept History
The 1996-1998 American Community Survey asked for a 12-month amount for the value of the food stamps following the Yes response category. For the 1999-2002 ACS, the words "Food Stamps" were capitalized in the question following the Yes response category, and the instruction "Past 12 months' value - Dollars" was added. Since 2003, the words "received during the past 12 months" were added to the question following the Yes response category.

Excerpt from: Social Explorer; U.S. Census Bureau; 2005-2007 American Community Survey 3-Year Summary File: Technical Documentation.
 
Adjusting Income for Inflation
Income components were reported for the 12 months preceding the interview month. Monthly Consumer Price Indices (CPI) factors were used to inflation-adjust these components to a reference calendar year (January through December). For example, a household interviewed in March 2007 reports their income for March 2007 through February 2007. Their income is adjusted to the 2007 reference calendar year by multiplying their reported income by 2007 average annual CPI (January-December 2007) and then dividing by the average CPI for March 2006-February2007.
In order to inflate income amounts from previous years, the dollar values on individual records are inflated to the latest years dollar values by multiplying by a factor equal to the average annual CPI-U-RS factor for the current year, divided by the average annual CPI-U-RS factor for the earlier/earliest year.
Excerpt from: Social Explorer; U.S. Census Bureau; 2005-2007 American Community Survey 3-Year Summary File: Technical Documentation.
 
Household
A household includes all the people who occupy a housing unit. (People not living in households are classified as living in group quarters.) A housing unit is a house, an apartment, a mobile home, a group of rooms, or a single room that is occupied (or if vacant, is intended for occupancy) as separate living quarters. Separate living quarters are those in which the occupants live separately from any other people in the building and which have direct access from the outside of the building or through a common hall. The occupants may be a single family, one person living alone, two or more families living together, or any other group of related or unrelated people who share living arrangements.