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Louisiana could lose federal money if people don't fill out their census

Louisiana could lose federal money if people don't fill out their census.

Posted: Aug 20, 2020 9:49 PM
Updated: Aug 21, 2020 7:09 PM

The deadline to respond to the 2020 Census is right around the corner, but most parts of Louisiana haven’t responded and it could cost the state.

The census is performed every 10 years and is a process required by the U.S. Constitution.

You’ll first get a pamphlet in the mail to fill out, but that can be pretty easy just toss it to the side because we have a lot going on right now during this pandemic but if you don’t end up filling out that form you could end up hurting the state.

“There’s a lot in the forefront but right now," said Jolan Jolivette, the Director for the Census in Governor’s office. "What’s ongoing that’s going to impact us for the next 10 years is the 2020 census.” 

The census counts how many people are in each state.

The counts are used to determine federal funding for things like fire departments, school lunch programs, and hospitals.

”It will shape the future for Louisiana and your parish in the city you live in,” said Jolivette.

The survey asks for things like age, date of birth, and ethnicity but it will not ask personal information like bank account numbers, Social Security, or immigration status.

Right now Louisiana has the ninth-worst self-response rate for 2020 with more than 40 percent of people not responding.

And this year the deadline is moved a month earlier to September 30th.

So if you haven’t filled out the survey yet, there will be more reminders just this time with masks and social distancing.

“Expect a knock someone will probably come to your door,” said Jolivette.

But to keep everyone safe and protect Louisiana’s future, Jolivette says fill out the form beforehand. You can do that through the mail, over the phone or for the first time online.

“If you love Louisiana, you want to make sure you can respond to the census so we can help better shape the future of Louisiana,” said Jolivette.

The census could have serious implications for Louisiana and its congressional representation. Louisiana lost a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives after the 1990 Census and did so again after the 2010 Census.

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