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Census Count Will Be Complex

The workers in this relatively small headquarters are tasked with a big assignment --- an accurate count of a local population in flux. The ranks of the homeless are rising, new immigrants and other minorities have been miscounted in the past, and the mortgage melt-down has made it even more difficult to determine where people live. No one knows that better than Slavic Village councilman Tony Brancatelli.

TONY BRANCATELLI: The Census is critically important for us. Certainly all the attention we've gotten on the foreclosure crisis and the amount of vacant and abandoned property we've been dealing with, we realize that not everyone left the city. They're living with family, relatives or doubling up, and it's important to make sure we count them, acknowledge them and make sure that our census numbers are accurate.

Among other things, those census numbers will determine how federal and state money will be distributed and how city ward and congressional district lines are drawn.

David C. Barnett was a senior arts & culture reporter for Ideastream Public Media. He retired in October 2022.