The U.S. Census Bureau will hire as many as 1,800 census takers and supervisors for a test-run in Rhode Island next year, in preparation for the next big U.S. Census in 2020. Providence County, R.I., will be the one-and-only testing ground in the nation — in 2018 — for the next big U.S. Census in 2020 that will determine, among other things, whether Rhode Island gets to keep its two seats in the House of Representatives. How Rhode Island got chosen as the sole location for this 2018 “end-to-end” census test is not fully clear.
But the state’s longtime redistricting-guru, Kimball W. Brace, believes that having the U.S. Census Bureau hire as many as 1,800 census takers and supervisors for a test-run in Rhode Island next year will be an “immense benefit to the state to try to get a better count, because we know they are so close … [to] going from two down to one. Any little bit will help.”
For example, “you look at the areas in hard-to-count jurisdictions,″ he said. “Certainly Providence city, Central Falls and Woonsocket are all three areas of concern. And they are all within Providence County. So, if indeed, you mount an effort to count in particular those three towns then you are ultimately helping things along toward 2020, and getting a complete count and keeping that Congressional seat.”