Preliminary numbers from the mid-decade census do not reflect the 50,000 hoped for by city leaders, though Mayor Christian Price and City Manager Gregory Rose say the results are within the expected range.

Preliminary results from the special census conducted by the city of Maricopa showed lower numbers than some city officials were hoping to see.

Maricopa paid between $700,000 and $800,000 to conduct a special mid-decade census through the U.S. Census Bureau in hopes of seeing a count of 50,000. The preliminary estimates would give the city an extra $665,000 per year over the next five years, totaling $3.3 million.

Preliminary census results showed a 4 percent increase in population from 43,482 to 45,277 residents.

“I would’ve liked to see that number be higher,” Councilman Henry Wade said. “I was hoping we’d be at 50,000 for the city. We heard a couple times from people who weren’t approached or had to call in, so hopefully that number will go up (when the official results come out).”

Had the city reached 50,000 residents, Maricopa would have made nearly $11.6 million over five years.

“When we discussed the census we knew it was going to be a range,” City Manager Gregory Rose said. “The results fell into that range, so overall we are happy with the numbers. It will provide money we wouldn’t otherwise have, so it’s a win for the city.”

Any money rewarded from the special census is expected to go toward public safety, emergency response services, parks and recreation facilities, and public works projects such as roads, sidewalks and intersection maintenance.

“We were hoping to show officially over 50,000, but (the numbers) are in line with our estimates,” Maricopa Mayor Christian Price said. “It makes our job easier to bring companies in with a higher population, but we still have many transient residents. We have residents who split time in Canada and other states, and we don’t get state collections for that. But it could be 3,500 to 5,000 more people.”

Price said he expects the number of counted residents to increase when the certified numbers come out in mid March. Any increase in population from the preliminary numbers will provide an additional $326 per person.