As a former census enumerator who spent most of last summer and up to the middle of October working, I have firsthand knowledge of how the census was taken in 2020.

First off, the 2020 census had a cutoff date of April 2020. So any homes built after that date or unoccupied until April 1 or later would not be counted.

For homes built before April 1, the home still may not be counted. Southern Moore County is a tourist area. A number of houses are only occupied part time and the owner may use their other home as their main residence, so then the home would not be included in the 2020 census either. Some of the new houses were built for short-term rental income properties. These houses would not be included in the census as well.

In Aberdeen, Southern Pines, Vass and Whispering Pines, there are a large number of military families who have moved into these areas. They have the option of declaring where they live as the main residence. They also have the option of declaring their home state as their residence. They may have come from a state with no state income tax or just might want to live in that state so they would be counted in their home state for census purposes.

Finally, some people just don’t want to be bothered with the census. Why? You’d have to ask them. By law everyone living in the U.S. is required to take the census. For those who decline, they are rarely if ever prosecuted.

Harold Mendelson


Publisher’s Note: This is a letter to the editor, submitted by a reader, and reflects the opinion of the author. The Pilot welcomes letters from readers on its Opinion page, which serves as a public forum. The Pilot is not in the business of suppressing public opinion. We are a forum for community debate, and publish almost every letter we receive. For information on how to make a submission, visit this page:

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