Pike County has lost about 1 percent of its population since 2010, the census announced in its last interim update before their comprehensive 2020 count.

As of July, 2019, the census reckoned that Pike County had lost about 200 people since the April 2010 census dropping from 18,516 to 18,302. The 2019 estimate was released Thursday, March 26.

Online: Go to my2020census.gov

Phone: Call 844-330-2020 between 6 a.m. and 1 a.m. (844-468-2020 for Spanish)

Elsewhere in the region St. Charles and Lincoln counties continued to boom, registering growth of more than 10 percent while St. Louis County shrunk slightly and St. Louis City continued to shrink substantially.

Among counties bordering Pike County, only Lincoln County and Ralls County, which includes Hannibal, were larger in 2019. Pike County, Ill., shrunk by more than 5 percent.

Every 10 years the Census Bureau conducts a constitutionally mandated effort to count every person living in the United States. The Census Bureau produces estimates in between the decade-by-decade counts by figuring in data on the number of births and deaths and the numbers of people moving in and out of a given area.

This data suggests that Pike County’s decline is driven by out-migration: the county saw more births than deaths, but that small margin couldn’t over come the loss of 390 people who moved out of the county.

Census Bureau numbers are used to determine how well-represented an area should be in Washington, D.C. and state capitols, as well as how much state and federal government money should come to local areas. A census bureau study found that $675 billion dollars was distributed based on census figures in 2015, including $38 billion for highway planning and construction and $19 billion for school lunches.

Information about how to respond to the census was sent out to homes in mid-March. Over the course of the summer, census workers will go in person to homes that haven’t answered in an effort to make the count as comprehensive as possible.

As of midnight on Tuesday, March 31, the response rate for Pike County was 39.2 percent, slightly above the rate for the state as a whole at 38 percent. Louisiana’s response rate at that point was 35.6 percent; the rate for Bowling Green was 36.3 percent; the rate for Clarksville was 17.6 percent and the rate for Eolia was 32.6 percent.

Send questions and comments to athorp@pikecountynews.com.

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