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2020 Census: Everyone Counts!
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Mandated by the Constitution, once every decade, the federal government conducts a count, or census, of the entire population in the United States, and this count will take place in 2020!
The information collected shapes how political power and federal tax dollars are shared in the United States over the next 10 years. The number of congressional seats and ElectoralCollegevotes each state gets are determined by census numbers and they guide how over $674 billions in federal funding is distributed for schools, roads, and other public services in local communities.The demographic data are also used by businesses for such things as where to build or open and by emergency responders during emergencies such as natural disasters. In summary, taking a few moments to complete the census questionnaire can help secure our community for the next 10 years.
Census information can also be invaluable tools for genealogical research and can help connect the dots of your family research. While no current information is ever released by the United States Census Bureau, records that are older than 72 years become available and can be a major component of tracing lineage. Also, the only information that is accessible from the Census Bureau is statistical information, not identifiable information. You can view the impact of census information in action through our online genealogy databases and resources.
Timeline: The timeline has been updated due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Please go to the 2020 Census Operation Adjustment site for complete details.
- Mid-March 2020: An invitation to respond to the census online will be mailed to every residence beginning on March 12, 2020.
- End of March 2020: A reminder letter and a reminder postcard will be sent out at the end of March to the beginning of April.
- Beginning of April 2020: If households still haven't responded, a reminder letter AND a paper questionnaire will be sent.
- August 11 through October 31: Census takers begin visiting homes that haven’t responded to the 2020 Census to ensure everyone is counted.
- October 31, 2020: Final day to self-respond by phone, mail, or online.
- April 30, 2021: The Census Bureau will deliver apportionment counts to the President and Congress as required by law.
Options for responding to the 2020 Census:
Invitations to respond to the 2020 Census will be delivered in March, and once you receive that invitation, you can respond either, for the first time ever, online, by phone, or by mail with a paper questionnaire.
What questions are on the Census?
The questions on the 2020 Census are generic, demographic questions about you and those who live with you. There is no citizenship question on the 2020 Census, and you can find a sample questionnaire at https://2020census.gov/en/about-questions.html.