Tornado outbreak could have long-term impact on 2020 census

Local News

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – The 2020 census will help determine where 675 billion dollars will be invested in across the U.S.

However, because of natural disasters there are growing concerns about how the government will reach people displaced by storms.

In just over 270 days, the U.S. government will start sending out census material.

“When they do receive information from the U.S. Census, it really does matter,” said Erick Collins, the Director of Montgomery County Economic Development. “Don’t let it sit on the counter,” he added.

Getting a better idea of who’s living in the U.S. and where they are living is critical in deciding where government funding goes. The data even helps draw political boundaries.

With natural disasters happening all over the country, including in our own backyard, it doesn’t make the census process any easier.

So now the Census Bureau is stepping in.

“They are actually going to be sending additional census counters, if you will, to the Dayton market and to the region so that they can canvass through areas,” said Collins.

With more than 1,100 structures destroyed in Montgomery County, it’s important to note that the census counts where you are, not where you want to be.

“If a home is being condemned or is being rebuilt but is not yet habitable, according to Census Bureau standards, unfortunately for the community, it won’t be counted,” said Terri Ann Lowenthal, former Staff Director of the House Census Oversight Subcommittee.

Because it will take countless people more than a year to rebuild, census numbers will not totally reflect every county over the next 10 years.

“The household in which they are living, however temporarily, needs to make sure they include all of those people on their own census form,” said Lowenthal.

Click here for more census information.

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