Census 2020: Why it’s important to Ohio and its economy

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The Census 2020 deadlines is Oct. 5

(WKBN) – The deadline for the 2020 U.S. Census will end sooner than we thought.

The U.S. secretary of Commerce says the 2020 census will end Oct. 5, despite a federal judge’s ruling last week that the headcount of every U.S. resident should continue through the end of October, according to a tweet posted on the Census Bureau’s website Monday.

The announcement came as a virtual hearing was being held in San Jose, California, as a follow-up to U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh’s preliminary injunction.

However, the Census Bureau is encouraging everyone to complete it by Sept. 30, because those dates could change again.

“The census is really a once in a decade chance to determine what the population is of the state of Ohio,” said Lydia Mihalik, director of Ohio Development Services Agency.

They provide support to businesses, communities and investors to encourage economic development in Ohio.

“It helps us to determine what our representation looks like in Washington, but also and probably more important to the everyday citizen in the state, is it determines the distribution of more than $675 billion every year,” said Mihalik.

That money is important for transportation, infrastructure, schools and school lunch programs.

“All of the things our communities across the state utilize on an everyday basis,” said Mihalik. “Getting that count right, getting that most accurate, complete count of the population in our communities across the state will help make sure that we get our fair share.”

The census also provides good insight for the tourism industry and helps businesses involved in tourism make decisions.

“Where they’re going to be promoting their particular activity or what type of investment, maybe, they’re going to make depending upon what their reach could be,” said Mihalik. “Another important component of the census is the data that’s utilized by the private sector, really, to determine how their business could potentially move forward.”

There’s a number of ways to complete the census, one is online at 2020census.gov or it can be completed in person.

“Right now actually the census is sending people out in the field to go door-to-door to places that have yet to respond,” said Mihalik. “If you don’t want to get a visit from a local census taker you can go online…really super easy to take the census, it’s less than 10 minutes.”

You can also complete it over the phone by calling (844) 330-2020.

“Both ways are easy. Like I said, it takes less than 10 minutes, but the results last a decade so it’s really important for Ohioans to be counted,” said Mihalik.

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