Chamber News

The 2020 Census – Take the Time to Respond 
Published: Sunday, March 1, 2020

CENSUS 101

What is a census and why is it important?

Once a decade, America comes together to count every resident in the United States, creating national awareness of the importance of the census and its valuable statistics. The decennial census was first taken in 1790, as mandated by the Constitution. It counts our population and households, providing the basis for reapportioning congressional seats, redistricting, and distributing more than $675 billion in federal funds annually to support states, counties and communities’ vital programs — impacting housing, education, transportation, employment, health care, and public policy.

HOW THE CENSUS BENEFITS YOUR COMMUNITY

Federal funds, grants, and support to states, counties, and communities are based on population totals and breakdowns by sex, age, race, and other factors. Your community benefits the most when the census counts everyone. People in your community use census data in all kinds of ways, such as these:

Residents use the census to support community initiatives involving legislation, quality-of-life and consumer advocacy.

 Businesses use Census Bureau data to decide where to build factories, offices, and stores, and these create jobs.

Local government officials use the census to ensure public safety and plan new schools and hospitals.

 Real estate developers and city planners use the census to plan new homes and improve neighborhoods.

Ultimately, the success of the census depends on everyone’s participation. The Census Bureau depends on cross-sector collaborations with organizations and individuals to get people to participate.

The 2020 Census is important for you and your community, and you can help.  To learn more or to get involved, please visit the Cole County website at colecounty.org/738/2020-Census or www.2020census.gov/

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