Readers Write

Why Census? Why do we need to be counted every 10 years? What’s the purpose for me to answer personal questions about me and my family? What’ll they do with it?”

In order to properly apportion seats in Congress, an accurate count of U.S. citizens is necessary. Results from the 2020 Census determine the number of seats each state has.

Also, to assess infrastructure, education, and social needs of our large cities, small towns, and rural areas, we must know the total headcount of those residing there. Billions of dollars in federal funds are apportioned to communities for schools, roads, hospitals, and other public services. School lunches, plans for highways, support for firefighters, and families in need are all affected by census results. (blog)*

According to author Andrew Whitley in his book The Sum of the People, “the Census Bureau is spending $48 per person to get a good count. There is $1.5 trillion in federal money to be apportioned to state and local governments based on census data. It’s the baseline for every other statistical survey the government conducts. It plays an important part in framing the discussion about who we are as a nation.”

The honorable Chris Green, Blount County Probate Judge, has estimated that every person not counted will cost Blount County $1,600 in federal funds. Thus a family of four who did not respond to the 2020 Census will cause Blount County to lose $6,400. If only 100 families out of the whole county fail to respond, that could cost the county more than $600,000!

That could pave a lot of roads or repair a bunch of bridges. Of course, the number will be greater for more populous counties. It’s easy to see how our state can win or lose based on how well the residents of the 67 counties respond to the census this year. It IS important!

How can I be sure my information won’t be misused? Is it safe?

The Census Bureau is bound by Title 13 of the U.S. Code to keep your information confidential. Under Title 13, the Census Bureau cannot release any identifiable information about you, your home, your family, or your business — even to law enforcement agencies. Any violation is a federal crime, punishable by prison time and/or a fine of up to $250,000. The answers you provide are used only to produce statistics. You are kept anonymous.

What does Wikipedia have to say about the Census?

Welcome to the 2020 Census (from Wikipedia)

It’s quick and easy. The 2020 Census questionnaire will take about 10 minutes to complete.

It’s safe, secure, and confidential. Your information and privacy are protected.

Your response helps to direct billions of dollars in federal funds to local communities for schools, roads, and other public services.

Results from the 2020 Census will be used to determine the number of seats each state has in Congress and your political representation at all levels of government.

The goal of the census is to count every person living in the United States, once, only once and in the right place.

You are required by law to respond to the 2020 Census (Title 13, U.S. Code, Sections 141 and 193).

Answers are confidential and private. The Census Bureau is required by law to protect your information. It is not permitted to publicly release responses in a way that could identify you or your household. All web data submissions are encrypted in order to protect your privacy. Title 13 of the U.S. Code protects the confidentiality of all your information.

The 2020 Census questionnaire should be completed by the person who owns or rents the living quarters or any other person who is at least 15 years of age with knowledge of the household.

OK! I got it, but I misplaced my form. What do I do now?

No problem. Go to www.2020Census.gov and click “Start Here.”

Contacts and Advisors: (These people
have all been consulted, have contributed
their opinions, and have consented to have
their names affixed to this report.)
Honorable Chris Green, Probate Judge,
Blount County, Ala.
Gregg Armstrong, Revenue Commissioner, Blount County, Ala.
Justin Cato, Financial Advisor, Huntsville, Ala.
Joe Knight, Commissioner, Jefferson
County, Ala.
Clayton Dorough, Personal Friend
Rev. Dewey Corder, Pastor; Central
Baptist Church, Trussville, Ala.
Phil Sims, Political Campaign Advisor
Dr. Roger Willmore, Baptist Association
Director, Calhoun County, Ala.
Dr. John Killian, Baptist Association
Director, Fayette County, Ala.
Bill Armistead, Former Alabama State
GOP Chairman
Jeremy Bryant, Automotive Robotic
Engineer
Joe Godfrey, Citizens Action Program
Earl Woodard, Personal Friend and
Author
Oneta Rhea, Personal Friend
Darla ORoark, Family Member
Leigh Marsh, Spouse
Brice F. Marsh, Facilitator and Messenger

*Note: Statement denoted “blog” was derived from unidentified source in a blog about Census Bureau.

Ed. note: Door-to-door census takers are expected to begin working in Blount County soon.