DECATUR — The city is looking for workers to go door to door counting residents for the U.S. census. A recruiting event is planned.
"It is important that we get people involved and get a correct count," said Tim Dudley, the city's economic development coordinator. "There is a lot to lose if we don't. Federal funding, a congress seat, the population count determines those things."
The event is 9 a.m.-12 p.m. on Friday at the Civic Center, 1 Gary K. Anderson Plaza.
City and county leaders formed a committee last month to create a plan for the census. It includes advertising in high-traffic areas such as at the Civic Center and Decatur Public Library.
The census every decade determines how federal funding is divided and how many U.S. House seats each state gets.
The issue is especially important for Illinois, which has had population numbers steadily decline.
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Macon County has 105,801 residents, according to a U.S. Census Bureau estimate, and had 110,768 in the 2010 Census. Decatur has 72,174, down from the 76,122 in 2010.
Decatur annexed roughly 200 properties to increase the population by the start of 2020.
Employees need to be at least 18 and a U.S. citizen. No degree is required. Dudley said the hours are flexible and those who are hired can work in the neighborhood of their choice.
"This does not affect government benefits like Snap, TANF or Medicaid," Dudley said.
Hours are full- or part-time. The pay is $20 an hour.
Contact Analisa Trofimuk at (217) 421-7985. Follow her on Twitter: @AnalisaTro