Thursday Is The Last Day To Be Counted In The Census

Henrietta Strickland
October 16, 2020

Data collection for the census is ending sooner than planned thanks to a Supreme Court ruling this week that sided with the Trump administration. But it must be postmarked by October 15.

Kovari noted that Census data translates into millions in federal dollars; money that goes to neighborhoods, hospitals, schools, Medicaid programs, and can also determine Congressional representation.

People now have about 24 hours to make sure they get counted.

The Census count happens once every ten years.

Executive Director for the City of Detroit's 2020 Census Campaign, Victoria Kovari, is urging people who have not yet completed their form to do so immediately.

Hall-Long says the early stop means fewer people will be included in the nationwide count.

"My primary concern is that not only is there a lot of federal funding that is tied to the Census, but in Albany County our sales tax is distributed county-wide based on the population in our cities and towns in the county", she added. "It really hurt us in terms of being able to capture those last-minute sign-ups", Kovari said.

However, Secretary of the Commonwealth William Galvin argued last week that that percentage of households the bureau claimed to have counted may be far higher than the actual number, noting federal census officials will not give him their data.

The U.S. Census, conducted every 10 years, is mandatory and is part of the U.S. Constitution (Article 1, Section 2). The Census Bureau will filter out duplicate responses to guarantee that each individual is counted at the correct address.

Over 99.9% of USA households have already been counted, according to the bureau.

Mail-in census forms must be postmarked by October 15th to be counted. Public information officials at the Census Bureau did not address an emailed question about whether DE had exceeded its 2010 enumeration rate.

Gibson-Brokenbaugh says this year census enumerators had more success knocking on the doors of households that had not self-responded than they did in 2010. She attributes this to the County's effort to get locals hired to enumerate in their own communities.

"There's no second chance after today", she said.

The City has worked with the University of Wisconsin-Madison to encourage students to fill out the 2020 Census, including partnering with University Housing to ensure that students in dorms receive their correct Census forms. This included geo-targeted advertisements on smartphone apps.

Hall-Long sees the first-time investment of state funds in the Complete Count Commission as key to counteracting the pandemic's impact on the count.

"We have people that need to be counted, especially in Immokalee and traditionally underserved areas", Housel says.

"Folks do have until very, very early tomorrow morning to fill out the Census if they haven't done so yet", the Mayor concluded.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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