In an effort to avert an undercount that could reduce federal aid and legislative clout, Baltimore is asking the U.S. Census Bureau for a recount in hopes of changing preliminary figures showing that the city lost 66,000 residents -- 8.5 percent of its population -- over the past decade.
Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke said today that there are more than 1,100 blocks in Baltimore that the Census Bureau undercounted by at least five housing units.
In all, the census missed about 20,000 city residents, he said. If that proves accurate, it would raise the city's population from the preliminary count of 720,000 to 740,000.
In 1980, the city's population was pegged at 786,000 -- a figure that city officials contend was 29,000 short. That alleged undercount cost the city $230 million in federal aid during the 1980s, officials said.