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Posted on: March 10, 2020

2020 Census: We Count

photo of a census worker

After years of planning it is time to conduct the 2020 census. The census takes place every 10 years and the data gathered in the census shapes the next decade in the city, state, and entire nation. Minnesota receives $15 billion a year from the federal government based on census data. That is $2,800 per person. Participating in the census is vital and in Blaine a complete count will go a long way to ensuring the completion of many high priority projects.

Infrastructure improvements on Highway 65 are a high priority for all Blaine residents and businesses. Each year Minnesota receives $76 million in transportation grants from the federal government. Census data is used as one factor in determining which projects receive grant dollars. The funding formula for Highway 65 improvements will include federal dollars and complete census data for Blaine could improve the city’s standing in the grant selection process.

Commercial and retail developers use census data to determine where to develop and build. A complete census count in Blaine is important to grow the local economy with more jobs. Many residents desire more options of places to shop or dine in Blaine and a complete census count will help in driving more of these types of businesses to Blaine.

How will the census work?

  • In mid-March Blaine residents will receive a postcard from the U.S. Census Bureau. The postcard will include information on how to complete the census online.
  • Those who do not respond to the postcard invitation will receive up to three reminder letters.
  • Census workers will enter the field in late April to make an in person contact attempt at addresses that have not yet responded to the census.
  • Census workers will remain in the field until August to attempt to collect a complete count.

Who can access my personal data?

  • All personal information collected in the census is protected private data and will not be made public for 72 years. No other government agency can access the data until it is made public 72 years after collection.
  • All census workers take a binding lifetime oath to protect the data they collect. If that oath is violated the census worker can be sentenced to up to five years in prison.

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