NORTH READING — The annual Town census will be mailed in mid–January. Residents are urged to return their forms as soon as possible. Response to the census is required under state law and census information is used for a variety of purposes, including: Providing proof of residency for legal matters; qualification for veterans’ benefits, housing benefits, in–state tuition or financial aid; providing public safety divisions with accurate residential information in emergency response situations; providing estimates of the senior and school populations; as well as securing the Town’s fair share of state and federal funds or grants.
In addition, returning the census maintains a voter’s “Active” voting status. A voter’s status will automatically convert to “Inactive” if the census form or the follow-up second mailing are not returned. This will require the voter to fill out an “Affirmation of Continuous Residence” form at the polls. If a voter is listed as “Inactive” on the census, signing and returning the form will automatically update that voter back to an “Active” status. Instructions for completing the form are printed on the front and back.
NO changes to a person’s voter registration can be made on the form — a person may NOT register to vote or change their political affiliation on the census form. A separate affidavit to the Town Clerk’s Office is required. After making any changes to the data and signing the form, it can be mailed back in the enclosed addressed envelope, dropped off in person at the Town Hall or at census drop boxes located at the Flint Memorial Library and Carr’s Stationers in the Stop and Shop Plaza.
Also included with this year’s census mailing is a dog licensing worksheet. The town’s dog licensing period is now by calendar year and the dog license worksheet can be mailed in with the census form, together with the proper documentation and fee. The licensing period is from Jan. 1 through March 31 – a late fee of $10 will apply to all renewal licenses beginning on April 1, in addition to the cost of the license. Complete details are on the worksheet.
The census form as well as the dog licensing worksheet will also be available on the Town’s website at www.northreadingma.gov. Please call the Town Clerk’s Office at 978–357–5218 for any questions.