The Town of Morinville conducted its census from May 2 until June 30. Initially residents were given the opportunity to complete their census forum online; however, only 38 per cent of households chose to do so, leaving the remaining households to be surveyed by enumerators.
Although numbers will be presented to councillors Aug. 9, administration will bring a more detailed report to council in September, outlining family composition, dwelling status, place of employment and language. Ethnicity and religious orientation were not included in the municipal census questionnaire.
But regardless of the breakdown of Morinville’s population, the census numbers will benefit the community through provincial and federal grant monies which are largely distributed on a per capita basis. The last federal census took place in 2006 and showed Morinville’s population to be 6,775 residents. Morinville’s previous municipal census, conducted in 2009, showed the population had increased to approximately 7,600 residents. That increase of 875 residents translated to approximately $284,375 in federal and provincial funding.
In June, Morinville’s Chief Financial Officer Andy Isbister said each resident represents approximately $325 in grant funding. That figure includes $60 per resident for basic municipal transportation funding, $175 for Municipal Sustainability Initiatives and $20 for Family and Community Support Services. Additionally, the Town receives funding for policing, library services and capital infrastructure through the Federal Gas Tax program on a per head basis.
With Morinville’s 2011 census revealing an additional 867 residents, Morinville can anticipate an additional $281,775 in grant revenues for an approximate total of $2.7 million in 2012.
In addition to providing grant funding for building roads and other infrastructure in the community, solid census numbers can often be a determining factor for businesses choosing to locate in a community.
Morinville’s population has increased by 1,728 residents in the past half-decade since the previous federal census.