The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that it plans to release hard population totals and racial breakdowns for Texas next week, the first step in what could be a politically complicated redistricting process.

Thanks to its short legislative session, Texas is among the first states to receive state-level data, which represents a hard count of residents from mailed questionnaires and interviews by census employees. All states must receive their data by April 1, a year after Census Day in 2010.

The data released next week will have population totals in mutiple geographies, including census blocks, tracts, voting districts, cities, counties and school districts. The bureau also will release data on race and Hispanic origin totals — as well as the voting-age population — in each geographic area. From the bureau's release: 

Each state’s geographic products and redistricting data are first delivered to the state’s leadership, such as the governor and majority and minority leaders in the state legislative body.

The Texas Tribune thanks its sponsors. Become one.

Upon confirmation of delivery to the state leadership, we will release a news release with five custom tables of data and update our interactive online map. At that time, we will release the full data set to our FTP download site. Within 24 hours, the full set of five detailed tables will also be available to the public online at American FactFinder.

Read more about the redistricting process on the Texas Legislative Council's website.

Texas Tribune donors or members may be quoted or mentioned in our stories, or may be the subject of them. For a complete list of contributors, click here.

Never miss a moment in Texas politics with our daily newsletter.