Cincinnati (AP) -- Hundreds of temporary census workers are starting a canvass of Ohio housing units to get ready for next year's people count.
Workers equipped with hand-held global-positioning gadgets hope to track every place where someone might be living -- every house, apartment, condo, dormitory, barracks, prison, group home, homeless shelter, trailer park and houseboat.
The actual census head count of Americans begins April 1, 2010.
Ohio mayors will be watching to make sure nobody is missed, because the 10-year census determines not only how congressional seats are apportioned but also how federal money is distributed.
Numerous mayors, including those in Cincinnati and Toledo, challenged mid-decade population estimates and got the government to revise its figures.
(Copyright 2009 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)