BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota's population has reached a record level, according to new estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau shows .

About 762,000 people live in North Dakota, an increase of approximately 4,000 compared to 2018.

“We are excited to see that a record number of people are experiencing North Dakota’s exceptional quality of life. Our population growth reflects the abundant opportunities in North Dakota and the strong potential for future economic expansion,” Gov. Doug Burgum said in a statement.

Burgum authorized a task force earlier this year to prioritize counting everyone in North Dakota, from the Bakken oilfield to its American Indian reservations to the state's universities.

North Dakota Census Office manager Kevin Iverson says having an accurate count is vital to calculating new statistical data which helps determine federal funding and legislative representation, according to the Bismarck Tribune.

North Dakota remains the fourth least populated state, ranking behind Alaska, Vermont and Wyoming.

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