YOUNGSVILLE — Youngsville continues its record population growth with a boost of 36.2 percent from 2010 to October 2014, demographer Mike Hefner told the City Council on Thursday.
Hefner, chief demographer for Geographic Planning & Demographic Services, noted the census counted 8,105 residents in 2010 while the GPDS update shows an estimated 11,043 this year.
“We used a simple methodology using the number of households within the city boundaries that receive garbage pickup,” Hefner said. “The primary reason is that by ordinance, all households within the city are required by law to have municipal garbage pickup. This provides a rather accurate number of occupied households within the town boundaries on which to base a population estimate.”
Youngsville had 4,024 households who received garbage collection, and 3,976 of those were residential. Hefner said he removed the commercial accounts from the calculations and added an additional 1 percent to accommodate account sharing.
Youngsville performed a similar census update in 2005, and Hefner said it definitely benefits a growing community with revenue sharing and grants. He said not too many communities do an interim census because they don’t see a benefit.
“I find that it helps when they do,” Hefner said.
“Especially when they have something that we can hang our hat on as far as some hard numbers, which we do over here. For retail, it becomes a good selling point to be a community of 11,000 people instead of 8,000 people.”
The Census Bureau’s 2012 American Community Survey estimates a population of only 8,172 — a figure Hefner disputes. He said he has found that ACS estimates have been the most inaccurate he has seen since the 1980s.
“I don’t think they access some of the data we do,” Hefner said. “They do some of the extrapolations of the 2010 (census) and some of the surrounding areas. Youngsville is unique (in) that it is growing so fast. If it was growing at the rate (of surrounding areas), it’d be pretty close.”