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Wichita Falls Living Magazine

2020 Census Everyone Counts in Wichita Falls

Feb 12, 2020 11:34AM
provided by | wichita falls chamber of commerce



The single most important and easy way to accomplish this goal is completing your 2020 Census form when the card arrives in the mail mid-March. You may ask how completing a short Census survey makes a noticeable impact in Wichita Falls? It can and it will! The impacts are both direct and indirect and can affect your daily activities and choices for the next ten years. 
  



 


Why is there a Count? 
The U.S. Constitution mandates an enumeration, or count, of the people once a decade since 1790.  

Who gets Counted? 
Every person living in the United States, no matter their citizenship or immigration status, needs to be counted. Persons are counted at the address where they usually live and sleep. In May of 2019, Wichita Falls leaders, realizing how important the decennial Census count is for the future of our community, established a volunteer special-purpose taskforce called the Wichita Falls Complete Count Committee (WFCCC) in conjunction with the U.S. Census Bureau. The council appointed taskforce top goals include: raising public awareness, engaging the community and ensuring everyone is counted. In August of 2019 the City of Wichita Falls was recognized as an official partner of the U.S. Census Bureau by our Regional Census Partnership Specialist, Patricia Daughtery, at the WFCCC inaugural training session.





 


When will the Census take place?  
Official Census Day is April 1, 2020. The Census Bureau will mail letters with instructions and a unique ID to residential style addresses in March.


How do I respond?  
There are three options – an online survey, by paper questionnaire, or by phone, which is available in English, Spanish and eleven additional languages.


How does the Census impact Wichita Falls?  
Locally the results from the 2020 Census will have a significant economic impact along with determination of future Congressional and House of Representatives district boundaries and number of seats each state receives.




 


Research from The George Washington University Institute of Public Policy has identified 316 federal funding programs (FY 2017) that utilize the decennial Census numbers for the equitable distribution of $1.504 trillion to state and local governments, non-profits, businesses and households across the nation. In 2017, this figure accounted for 7.8% of the Gross Domestic Product. Drilling those numbers down to consider impacts within Texas and in Wichita Falls, it’s been estimated that having an undercount of Wichita Falls population could result in a loss per year, per person of $2,045. When multiplying that estimate over a ten year period until the next decennial Census, that could result in $20,450 per person in lost funding from 55 federal spending programs (e.g. student loans, medicare, highway construction, school breakfast, WIC, CDBGrants, Business/Industry loans, Head Start, Sec. 8 Housing Vouchers, CHIP, etc.). Even a minor 1% undercount of the Wichita Falls population can have severe ramifications when multiplied over ten years. It is crucial that people understand the importance of completing their 2020 Census form – it only takes a few minutes, but has a major impact on the Wichita Falls community for the next decade…Be Counted Wichita Falls!   



 


Are there Census jobs available? 
Yes, the Census Bureau will be recruiting for temporary positions locally and across the nation, such as outreach specialists and door-to-door census takers. 
Call 855-562-2020 for more information.

When will Census results be available? 
The Census Bureau’s deadline for submitting population counts to the President is December 21, 2020. We anticipate the release of state and local Census data beginning in the Spring of 2021.




 


Are my responses confidential? 
Yes, federal law (Title 13) prevents the U.S. Census Bureau from sharing census responses identifying individuals with other agencies, including immigration authorities and law enforcement. The data is not released for 72 years after collection.  




 


Want more information or to become a 2020 Census community partner? 
Need a speaker for an upcoming event or volunteer to make a difference? 
Visit www.wichitafallstx.gov/2069/2020-Census or call the City of Wichita Falls 
Planning Division at 940-761-7451 for more details.

Upcoming Census Events:  
Coffee and Conversations – A 2020 Census Panel Discussion hosted by the Center for Non-Profit 
Management & Leadership
Where: MSU Dillard College of Business Administration 
When: January 16, 2020 at 8:30am
University Kiwanis Pancake Festival – Look for the 2020 Census Booth! 
Where: Bridwell Agricultural Center
When: January 25, 2020 

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