Census collection to end Monday


Information gathering for the 2020 Census is due to end Monday, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross said this week.

This includes the ability to self-respond online and by phone, and to Census takers who are going door to door.

So far, 80.7 percent of Dubois County households have responded to the Census, which keeps the county in the No. 1 spot for the state. Jasper and Ferdinand lead the municipalities in the response rate, at 81.9 percent and 81.8 percent respectively. Huntingburg’s response rate is at 73.5 percent, Holland is at 71.2 percent and Birdseye is at 66.4 percent.

The breakdown for townships:

Madison: 89.1 percent

Jackson: 86 percent

Hall: 85.7 percent

Boone: 85.5 percent

Ferdinand: 84.5 percent

Bainbridge: 81.7 percent

Cass: 79.7 percent

Harbison: 79.7 percent

Jefferson: 76.9 percent

Patoka: 75.9 percent

Marion: 73.6 percent

Columbia: 70.4 percent

To complete the census online, go to https://2020census.gov/. If you do not have a census ID number, select “If you do not have a Census ID” at the beginning of the questionnaire. To complete the census by phone, call 844-330-2020 for English or 844-468-2020 for Spanish.

The commerce secretary’s announcement this week came as a followup to U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh's preliminary injunction. The injunction ordered last week suspended the Census Bureau's deadline for ending the head count on Sept. 30, which automatically reverted the deadline back to an older Census Bureau plan in which the deadline for ending field operations was Oct. 31.

In April, the U.S. Census Bureau pushed back the deadline for ending the 2020 census from the end of July to the end of October because of the pandemic.

The new Oct. 5 deadline doesn't necessarily violate the judge's order because the injunction suspended the Sept. 30 deadline for field operations.

Koh said in her ruling that the shortened schedule ordered by President Donald Trump’s administration likely would produce inaccurate results that would last a decade. She sided with civil rights groups and local governments that had sued the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Commerce, which oversees the statistical agency, arguing that minorities and others in hard-to-count communities would be missed if the counting ended Sept. 30. Attorneys for the federal government said they were appealing the decision.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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