Mayor pushes census participation

  • Census

Hartwell Mayor Brandon Johnson is urging residents to complete their census forms in order to help Hartwell grow.
The current response rate for the census as of Sept. 20 for Hartwell is 60.3 percent and Hart County is 58.3 percent. Both are below the state and national response rates.
“Apparently that’s not too good,” Johnson said. “We are on the lower end of the spectrum of what we would like to see.”
Johnson said an accurate population count is important because “everything hinges on population data.” Certain population criteria gives the city access to new grants, funds and programs. The amount of state and federal resources available to the city is often judged in demographics and population, according to Johnson.
“Everybody tells you Hartwell has grown a lot in the last three to four years,” Johnson said. “We want to capture that population so we can get our bang for the buck on it.”
The population of Hartwell and Hart County is also a criteria that many potential businesses look at deciding if they want to invest in the area. These businesses include retail, restaurants, entertainment, housing and rental development and recreation.
“Everybody who looks at Hartwell as a potential for any type of investment of money, whatever sector of the economy they’re in, a large part of it is what is the population.”
An increase in population can get Hartwell and Hart County into new thresholds for businesses looking for a place to invest.
“If we were able to capture the right census, we might be more attractive to one more business,” Johnson said.
Adequate representation at the federal and state levels is also dependent on the census. The data will be used to draw up new districts.
“It could result in what district we are in or what congressmen we have,” Johnson said. “It’s important for it all to be accurate.”
Johnson is wanting a response rate of at least 75 percent. He is also thankful for all the people who are going door-to-door to collect census data.
To have your census data accounted for, either fill out and send the census packet that was sent via the mail or go online at to complete the online questionnaire.
The deadline to complete the census is Sept. 30.