STATEHOUSE (July 23, 2020) – According to State Rep. Bob Heaton (R-Terre Haute), 2020 census responses are critical to future federal funding in local communities, and Hoosiers should respond now if they have not already done so.
Door-to-door visits are beginning in some areas around the country to remind residents to complete their 2020 census forms. Heaton said Indiana is currently tied for 10th in the nation for response rate, with nearly two-thirds of Hoosier census forms submitted.
"This census is critical to ensure our communities and state are accurately counted for future federal funding," Heaton said. "It could mean billions of dollars for essential infrastructure and government services. And, with multiple ways to respond to the census, completing it has never been easier."
Heaton encourages residents to visit 2020Census.gov to fill out the census online. Hoosiers can also call 844-330-2020 or mail back the questionnaire sent to households.
Census takers have started visiting nonresponding households in west central Indiana and will continue through Oct. 31 to ensure every resident is counted. Heaton said about one-third of households in some west central Indiana counties still need to respond to the 2020 census, including Clay, Monroe, Owen and Vigo counties.
The current percentage of non-responding households reported by the U.S. Census Bureau for those counties are:
Census workers will wear masks and follow local public health guidelines when they visit households. All census takers complete a virtual COVID-19 training on social distancing, and other health and safety protocols before beginning their work in neighborhoods.
Heaton said everyone is required to fill out the census every 10 years by law, and the information is kept confidential. Personal information cannot be used against respondents by any government agency or court.
According to Heaton, billions of dollars in federal funding to support education, housing, health and public safety are on the line as this data impacts strategic planning decisions about statewide job training, locations of new businesses and public transportation projects.
Self-responses are due by Oct. 31, 2020.
State Rep. Bob Heaton (R-Terre Haute) represents House District 46,
which includes portions of Clay, Monroe, Owen and Vigo counties.
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