As of Thursday, Carson City had the best Census response rate among all Nevada cities and counties. But some residents haven't yet seen a form to fill out.
The U.S. Census Bureau reported that 66 percent of the census forms sent to Carson City addresses had been returned by mid-week. Carson City was just ahead of Yerington at 65 percent and Boulder City and Sparks, each at 64 percent.
As a county, Carson City had a dominating 6-point lead over Douglas, Lyon, and Churchill counties, where 60 percent of households have sent in census forms.
The Census Bureau projects that Carson City will ultimately have the best response rate among Nevada counties at 76 percent and the second-best rate among cities, behind Boulder City, which is expected to have an 80-percent response rate. Boulder City and Carson City also finished 1-2 with best response rates in the 1990 Census.
Carson City was far ahead of the national and statewide response rates, at 58 and 56 percent, respectively.
"I'm not surprised," Mayor Ray Masayko said. "Carson City people are in touch with their community. They're involved. They know they make a difference individually. It's the same when we do city surveys. We get great results when we do surveys."
The Census Bureau will continue tallying response forms until April 11, Census media specialist Anjali Olgeirson said.
"After that we start compiling a list of who has not responded," Olgeirson said.
Census takers will visit the homes of non-responding addresses starting April 27, she said.
So far, Ellen R. Nelson on Continental Drive hasn't responded but not by her choice.
"I didn't get any form," she said. "We've been looking for one for weeks."
She called the toll-free Census number at (800) 471-9424 to have a form sent to her. Today is the last day to call that number to get a form sent, but people can phone in census responses to that number.
"I figure if I didn't get one and didn't say anything, they'd fine me $1,000," Nelson kidded. "No, really, there's a place for this because it historically cites what we were like."
Laurie James said she and others living at the Carson Indian Colony also didn't get census forms.
"I was concerned that we would be thrown in jail if we didn't turn in Census forms," James said.
Chuck Wright made many phone calls to make sure he got a Census form this year after not being counted in 1980 or 1990. He lives in the southeast corner of Carson City, south of the Carson River, which is served by the Minden post office, he said.
"The paper's been talking about how important it is to be counted," Wright said. "We hadn't been, so we wanted to make sure we got counted."
It ended up one of Wright's neighbors is a Census taker and made sure Wright got one, and then a form also came in the mail.
Carson City Community Development Director Walt Sullivan said his staff has put in some 600 man-hours in the past two years to update the Census map.
"I would say we added 5,000 addresses," said Sullivan, who added that Carson City now has between 18,000 and 20,000 addresses.
If Carson City's population tops 50,000 the city would also become a "metropolitan planning organization," a tool that would bring increased transit funding to the city.
"Because of the good mapping we've done, Carson City is enjoying the success of a good count," Sullivan said.
Census response rates as of Thursday
Carson City - 66 percent
Yerington - 65 percent
Boulder City - 64 percent
Sparks - 64 percent
Henderson - 62 percent
Churchill County - 60 percent
Fallon - 60 percent
Douglas County - 60 percent
Lyon County - 60 percent
Washoe County - 59 percent
Reno - 58 percent
Clark County - 55 percent
Las Vegas - 55 percent
Storey County - 55 percent
Elko County - 56 percent
Elko - 55 percent
Mesquite - 54 percent
Lincoln County - 54 percent
Caliente - 54 percent
Ely - 52 percent
North Las Vegas - 52 percent
White Pine County - 50 percent
Lovelock - 50 percent
Humboldt County - 49 percent
Winnemucca - 48 percent
Pershing County - 48 percent
Mineral County - 48 percent
Lander County - 47 percent
Wells - 40 percent
Eureka County - 38 percent