Welcome to SEMCOG's Think Regional/Act Local blog! SEMCOG is the only organization in Southeast Michigan that brings together all governments to solve regional challenges and enhance the quality of life for the seven-county regions 4.7 million residents. With this regional perspective in mind, we work with member local governments to sustain our regions reputation as a great place to work, play, and do business.


Our panel of SEMCOG staff bloggers will post daily to this blog, discussing SEMCOG's data, federal and state legislative issues, and environmental and fiscal sustainability best practices for local governments all with the goal of creating a successful future for the region.



Think Regional/Act Local

Local knowledge matters

(Census, Data) Permanent link

July 5, 2012 – The U.S. Census Bureau recently released its 2011 population estimates for cities, villages, and townships. For some reason (that virtually nobody knows), they chose to assume that each community's household population grew at the same rate as the rest of its county, and kept group quarters population (people in dorms, nursing homes, prisons, etc.) constant. This oversimplified methodology makes this data set basically useless. For example, according to this estimate, every community in Wayne County lost one percent of population from April 2010 (Census 2010) to July 2011, regardless of whether its Canton or Detroit, because the county lost one percent of population.


Fortunately for Southeast Michigan communities, SEMCOG produces community population estimates twice a year using local knowledge anddata, such as housing changes. The latest SEMCOG estimates as of December 2011, are available online.

Xuan Liu
Interested in knowing how SEMCOG’s data impacts local governments and residents in Southeast Michigan? Then, you’ll want to read Xuan’s weekly posts.

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Let’s Celebrate….Clinton River Watershed Council receives SEMCOG’s highest award

(Best Practice, Environment, Regionalism, Stormwater management) Permanent link

July 5, 2012 — As we celebrate the 4th of July, it’s fitting that we celebrate the accomplishments of one of our region’s star organizations – the Clinton River Watershed Council. Last week at SEMCOG’s General Assembly, the watershed council was presented with SEMCOG’s highest honor, the Regional Ambassador Award.


This 40-year-old organization is committed to protecting, enhancing and celebrating the Clinton River, its watershed and Lake St. Clair. The Clinton River is an important regional asset, due in part to the hard work of the Clinton River Watershed Council. The organization strives to assure that its natural, economic, and recreational value enhances the quality of life for those who live, work, and play in the Clinton River watershed and Lake St. Clair. They provide programs and services like Adopt-A-Stream, where teams can volunteer to monitor and maintain portions of the river, and Stream Leaders, which gives students a hands-on chance to learn about the river. They also help restore our trout fishery in one of the Clinton River stretches…the Paint Creek (one of the only trout fisheries left in our area).


The Watershed has partnered with SEMCOG for many years, and collaborates with the many local governments, businesses, community groups and individuals in the area. Congratulations to them as they are celebrating their 40th year of protecting and enhancing this important watershed for future generations.


Amy Mangus
You can leverage your SEMCOG membership to help your local government become more sustainable and effective. Amy’s posts will focus on SEMCOG’s member services.

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