2020 Census: City leaders say it is crucial to be counted - FOX34 Lubbock

2020 Census: City leaders say it is crucial to be counted

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

Every 10 years, the federal government counts the number of people in the U.S. through a constitutionally mandated survey.

Victoria Whitehead, vice chair of the Complete Count LBK Committee, said there are two reasons why Lubbock citizens should care about this census.

The first reason is federal funding, she said.

"Without us counting ourselves, the federal dollars don't come back home, they go elsewhere," Whitehead said. "So, if we get an accurate count and can justify the numbers and the increase in the population boom that we've been having in Lubbock, we can get federal resources to help support the population that we have."

This funding goes toward hospitals, fire departments, schools, roads and other resources based on the data, according to the committee.

Whitehead said the second reason is congressional representation. The results determine the number of seats each state will have in the House of Representatives.

"A couple years back, we lost a congressional seat due to population decrease and population increase in the I-35 corridor of Texas. We hear every day so many people moving to Texas, and so for us to be able to maintain where we're at legislatively and congressionally, we need to have those numbers," White said.

In a couple months, residents will receive a 10-question form in the mailbox, or for the first time, the form can be completed online. 

Whitehead said with Lubbock growing, it is even more crucial to have accurate numbers.

"What this is is us being able to access resources to help maintain that growth. I think if you drive out to southwest Lubbock, you see the transformation that our city has had, so with that comes a lot of need and especially needs that we can meet with federal dollars," she said.

The committee is inviting residents to learn more about how the census affects the Lubbock community at the 2020 Census Kickoff Forum on Thursday, Jan. 23. It will be from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Texas Tech's International Cultural Center, located at 601 Indiana Avenue. 

Census Day is April 1.

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