Earlier this month, the City of Lenoir City Council approved a resolution supporting the 2020 Census. Council committed to helping the Caldwell County Complete Count Committee get a full count of city residents.
Council approved the resolution during the Sept. 3, 2019, regular meeting. After approving the resolution, Mark Lastoria, Partnership Specialist with the U.S. Census Bureau, gave a presentation on the goals of the 2020 Census.
Lastoria said the main goal of the 2020 Census is "to count everyone once, only once, and in the right place."
The number of residents affects the state's representation in Congress. Census data also determines how the federal government distributes money to state governments.
"There are 435 Representatives in the House of Representatives at the federal level. Those seats are allocated based on Census data," Lastoria said. "Additionally, each year, the U.S. Congress disperses $675 billion of tax revenue back down to the state level, which comes down to the county level and into the cities and towns. That is a significant amount of money."
Lastoria said exponential grow has happened in North Carolina since the 2010 Census. The growth in residents could give the state more seats in the House of Representatives.
"Strong estimates show that North Carolina will pick up one more seat," Lastoria said. "If the count goes very well, we will pick up two more seats. That allows us to have more political power and sway at the federal level."
The 2020 Census will be the first national census in the world that will be carried out on a computer or smart phone.
"We expect 90% of everyone who responds to a census or American Community Survey to respond to the 2020 decennial Census online or by smart phone," Lastoria said.
Watch the entire presentation below.
Click here to watch the video on YouTube.
2020 Census Partnership Resolution
WHEREAS the U.S. Census Bureau is required by the U.S. Constitution to conduct a complete count of the population and provides a historic opportunity to help shape the foundation of our society and play an active role in American democracy;
WHEREAS the City of Lenoir, North Carolina is committed to ensuring every resident is counted;
WHEREAS federal and state funding is allocated to communities, and decisions are made on matters of national and local importance based, in part, on census data and housing;
WHEREAS census data help determine how many seats each state will have in the U.S. House of Representatives and are necessary for an accurate and fair redistricting of state legislative seats, county and city councils and voting districts;
WHEREAS information from the 2020 Census and American Community Survey is vital for economic development and increased employment;
WHEREAS the information collected by the census is confidential and protected by law;
WHEREAS a united voice from business, government, community-based and faith-based organizations, educators, media and others will enable the 2020 Census message to reach more of our residents;
WHEREAS the Census count requires extensive work, and the Census Bureau requires partners at the state and local level to insure a complete and accurate count;
WHEREAS the City of Lenoir, North Carolina will work with the Caldwell County Complete Count Committee to bring together a cross section of community members who will utilize their local knowledge and expertise to reach out to all persons of our community;
Now, therefore, BE IT RESOLVED that the City of Lenoir, North Carolina is committed to partnering with the U.S. Census Bureau and the State of North Carolina and will:
1. Support the goals for the 2020 Census and will disseminate 2020 Census information;
2. Encourage all City residents to participate in events and initiatives that will raise the overall awareness of the 2020 Census and increase participation;
3. Provide Complete Count Committee members and Census advocates to speak to County and Community Organizations;
4. Support census takers as they help our County complete an accurate count; and,
5. Strive to achieve a complete and accurate count of all persons within our borders.
Adopted by the City of Lenoir, North Carolina City Council this 3rd day of September 2019.
Joseph L. Gibbons, Mayor
Click here to view a PDF of Mark Lastoria's Presentation.
Click here to visit the 2020 Census jobs website.