Ocean Pines is urging homeowners and residents to take part in the 2020 U.S. Census, which helps determine the level of funding that state governments and local communities receive from the federal government for the next decade.
Worcester County was among the lowest response rates in Maryland in 2010, with just 33.2% self-responding, compared to a 69.5% statewide average, according to https://2020census.gov/en/response-rates.html.
This year, to date, the self-response rate in Worcester County is just 11.8% percent, compared to a statewide average of 23.8% percent.
Filling out the Census can be done online and generally takes about 10 minutes. To fill out the Census, visit www.mycensus2020.gov.
According to Census.gov, “The census provides critical data that lawmakers, business owners, teachers, and many others use to provide daily services, products, and support for you and your community.”
Each year, $675 billion dollars in federal funding go to hospitals, health care fire departments, schools, roads, and other resources, all based on census data.
“The results of the census also determine the number of seats each state will have in the U.S. House of Representatives, and they are used to draw congressional and state legislative districts,” the site said.
Kelly Henry, Worcester County’s Complete Count Coordinator, said it’s important for everyone to respond to the census survey. Not doing so could cause an area to lose out on important resources.
“If they receive a survey at the second/vacation home, they should enter the code on the Census form and, when asked if that is the location at which they live most of the time, state ‘no,’” Henry said. “They need to make sure that they in fact complete the entire survey at their primary residence. If the census survey code mailed to second/vacation homes are not inputted into the system and responded to properly, those numbers count against the county relative to response rates.”
The 2020 Census marks the 24th time the country has counted its population, since 1790.
Information gathered by the Census Bureau is bounded by U.S. Code to keep confidential any information it collects from residents.
According to Census.gov, “The Census Bureau cannot release any identifiable information about you, your home, or your business, even to law enforcement agencies. The law ensures that your private data is protected and that your answers cannot be used against you by any government agency or court.
“The answers you provide are used only to produce statistics. You are kept anonymous: The Census Bureau is not permitted to publicly release your responses in any way that could identify you or anyone else in your home.”
“The Census survey is easy, important and safe,” Henry added.
Visit www.2020census.gov for more information.