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Census deadline approaching, officials remind Mainers to partake

There are only a few days remaining to take part in the 2020 Census.
There are only a few days remaining to take part in the 2020 Census.
Published: Sep. 21, 2020 at 11:48 PM EDT
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BANGOR, Maine (WAGM) - There are only a few days remaining to take part in the 2020 Census.

Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap, Chair of the Complete Count Committee, says though the census began in March, efforts to collect data slowed due to the pandemic.

By summer, enumerators were again going door-to-door.

He says money for many federal programs, including highways and health care, are distributed to the states based on population numbers.

“You have the real risk that certain segments of the population could be undercounted, like children, for example,” said Dunlap. “Sometimes people don’t always think to include a newborn baby in their census figure, or elderly. People who live in a nursing home may not be counted for some reason. So the effort has been redoubled to make sure that we have an accurate count of every population center, every town, every plantation, every city, that you can actually get our fair share of the tax money that we pay.”

Funding for education, health care, transportation and other infrastructure projects is determined based on census data.

Information will also be used next year for re-districing.

The Legislature will be redrawing its two Congressional districts, 151 House districts, and 35 Senate districts, as well as all the county commission seats.

Dunlap says the more accurate the information is, the more representative our government can be.

The deadline to take part in the 2020 census is September 30th.

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