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Census closes Utah operations

Published September 22, 2010 1:03 pm

Millcreek • One door-to-door counter and trainee try to foil duck attack.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2010, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

The Census Bureau has finished all its follow-up work in Utah for the 2010 Census, and has closed its Salt Lake City office.

"We thank the people of Utah for their help in a successful Census," said W. Todd Hansen, who was the local Census office manager for Salt Lake City until it closed its doors last week.

The Census Bureau says 74 percent of Utahns responded to by-mail questionnaires, a bit better than the 72 percent who did 10 years ago. It was also better than the 72 percent who responded this year nationally.

The highest response rate in Utah was in Herriman, where 82 percent provided mail-in responses, Hansen said.

"We were very pleased. Not only were our numbers higher than they were in the last Census, they were higher than expected for this year," Hansen said.

He added that no major injuries came to Census workers as they did door-to-door work.

"The most serious injury came from a lady who tripped on a sidewalk, and broke her arm in several places," he said.

But the most unusual injury was caused not by a person who did not want to be counted, but by a duck.

Hansen said a crew leader training another worker in Millcreek saw a duck attacking a woman pushing a baby stroller, and tried to head off the angry duck.

"She was bitten about 15 times on the foot" because she was wearing sandals, Hansen said.

National Census Bureau Director Robert Groves said in a teleconference on Wednesday, "We have completed the phase [of the 2010 Census] that relies on the American public," which he said "came through in an amazingly powerful way."

By law, the Census Bureau must report state populations by Dec. 31. Those numbers will be used to determine how many U.S. House seats each state will receive. Utah is expected to receive a fourth seat because of increasing population during the past decade.