The Census Bureau is entering the first major phase of the 2008 Census Dress Rehearsal after months of recruiting hundreds of people from the Fayetteville area.
Now through the end of June, about 760 locally hired workers will update the Census Bureau’s address list — verifying, adding and deleting addresses. This is the first major phase of the dress rehearsal for the 2010 Census. The dress rehearsal will be conducted in a nine-county area around Fayetteville, N.C., and in San Joaquin County, Calif.
"The foundation of an accurate 2010 Census - and a census dress rehearsal - is an accurate address list," said Wayne Hatcher, director of the Census Bureau's Charlotte Regional Office. "If we don't know where to deliver the census form, the people living at that address might not be counted."
Since the last census, an estimated 27,000 housing units and 46,000 people have been added to the dress rehearsal site, which includes Chatham, Cumberland, Harnett, Hoke, Lee, Montgomery, Moore, Richmond and Scotland counties. All of North Carolina, with its own estimated gain of 418,000 housing units and 637,000 people, will be canvassed for new addresses in the spring of 2009 for the 2010 Census.
To help ensure the accuracy of the census and improve its efficiency, the Census Bureau has moved away from using pencil and paper to update its address lists and maps. Now, census workers will update the information electronically, using hand-held computers and coordinates from the Global Positioning System (GPS). GPS coordinates will be added to each residential structure to make sure it's recorded within the correct city, county or other geographic unit - which is particularly important when lines for Congressional and state legislature districts are redrawn. The dress rehearsal serves as the Census Bureau's final opportunity to fine-tune its plans for collecting data with the hand-held computers.
Residents can easily identify census workers by their official badges, hand-held computers and census bags.
To apply for jobs in the area, call the Local Census Office in Fayetteville at 1-866-673-2008. For more information on the 2010 Census and the 2008 Census Dress Rehearsal, visit <http://www.census.gov/2010census/>.