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posted: 2/19/2018 5:30 AM

Naperville gearing up for start of special census

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  • The Atwater subdivision on Naperville's northwest side is one area among 58 census blocks where the population will be counted as part of a special census beginning Friday. The count is expected to conclude in early April.

      The Atwater subdivision on Naperville's northwest side is one area among 58 census blocks where the population will be counted as part of a special census beginning Friday. The count is expected to conclude in early April.
    Marie Wilson | Staff Photographer

 
 

When the doorbell rings in some sections of Naperville beginning Friday, an enumerator with a green ID badge could be at the door, waiting to learn about occupants for a special census.

A team of more than 200 enumerators, or census workers, is set to hit the streets Feb. 23 through early April to conduct the special count, the only such population total being taken in the state this year.

The special census won't count all households in Naperville, but only those within 58 census blocks selected by the city. Mainly on the southwest and northwest sides, these census blocks include subdivisions where new housing recently has been built.

Now the city is asking residents to participate in the census as it aims to get an accurate count of the population. Estimated at 141,853 as of the 2010 census, Naperville's population is used to calculate the city's share of three taxes distributed by the state: income tax, local use tax and motor fuel tax.

City officials estimate they could see an additional $1.6 million from those taxes before the next regular census in 2020 -- if the special census finds a population increase of at least 4,650.

"All of Naperville will benefit from the extra revenue this special census could bring to our city," Mayor Steve Chirico said in a news release.

The city is paying the Census Bureau about $238,000 to conduct the special count, which is the first in Naperville since 2008 and the seventh since 1990. Special tallies also were recorded in 1992, 1994, 1996, 1997, 2003.

Census workers this time will follow a defined path through the blocks included in the count and ask a short list of questions about the name, age, sex and race of each resident and a few basic questions about the housing structure. A map detailing which areas will be counted is available at www.naperville.il.us/government/special-census/.

The Naperville Area Homeowners Confederation is mentioning the census on its website, in social media posts and in its newsletter to make sure members are aware, President Steve Grosskopf said. But the effort so far is not drawing much concern or attention among group participants, he said.

Census workers are scheduled to be visiting houses daily from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., including weekends. For questions or to verify the identity of a census worker, residents can call the special census office at (630) 305-4479.

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