Through some basic analysis of census data, we can see what adopting the 180 percent [of the Federal poverty] line as the definition of poverty in North Carolina would have meant over the last nine years.
In every year since 2003, the number of North Carolinians under a 180 percent line hovers around 35 percent of the population, while the number of people falling below current poverty standards averages about 15 percent.
That is, the current poverty definitions show that approximately one in six people in North Carolina are in poverty. Using the more accurate 180 percent line would increase that proportion to one in three.
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