2024 Census Information


ANNUAL TOWN CENSUS aka Street Listing

REVIEW & RETURN:  Every household in Stow will receive a Census in January
IF census is accurate:  sign and return to the Town Clerk's Office within 10 days of receipt
IF updates need to be made: make necessary changes, sign and return within 10 days of receipt
IF you've moved into Stow after the 1st of January and would like to establish residency, please complete a Census Form to include you and members of your household or register to vote.

Why is the Census Important?   In accordance with Massachusetts General Law c51,s4, we are required to communicate with each household and compile an annual street list – also known as a town census. 

The census is critical for Stow to maintain accurate population information for municipal services, calculate state and federal funding allocations, and project school enrollments and costs. It also assists individuals with proof of residence for housing and veterans’ benefits, in-state college tuition, insurance benefits, and more.

What happens if I don't return my census?   While returning your census does not register you to vote, failure to respond shall result in removal from the active voting list.  The inactive voters will be placed on the inactive voters list and will be sent a confirmation post card,  The confirmation notice must be signed and returned in order to convert back to an active voter. The confirmation notice is meant to confirm that the voter continues to reside at the address at which he or she is registered, or if the voter has moved, update the address on file. Voters who fail to return confirmation notices will remain on the inactive voters list.

Inactive Voters :  On Election Day, If you are an inactive voter, you will be on the Inactive Voter List when you check-in at your polling place.  Before you may vote, you will be required to show identification and complete an affirmation of current and continuous residence.  The identification must reflect the voter's name and address as it appears on the Inactive Voter List.  It is not required that you present photo identification. Acceptable forms of identification include: a driver's license, state-issued ID card, recent utility bill, rent receipt, lease, a copy of a voter registration affidavit, or any other printed identification which contains your name and address.  Inactive voters may still cast a ballot if you have moved within Stow.  For state elections, inactive Stow voters may cast a ballot (in Stow) if they moved to another Massachusetts municipality to another within six months of a state election.

Returning to Active Voter:  Inactive voters remain registered to vote until they fail to vote in two consecutive biennial state elections. Inactive voters are restored to the active voters list any time they return a Census form, complete an affirmation of current and continuous residence, fill out a new voter registration form, sign a nomination form/petition or submit anything to their local election official which is signed under penalty of perjury and confirms the voter's address. 


The last Federal Census was conducted in 2020.  The count is mandated by the Constitution and conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, a nonpartisan government agency. The Federal Census counts the population in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and five U.S. territories (Puerto Rico, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands). 

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