Census More Important than Ever, Says O’Halleran
WASHINGTON – Last week, Congressman Tom O’Halleran (AZ-01) joined a group of over 80 colleagues on a letter to Congressional leadership calling for the extension of reporting and transmission deadlines for the 2020 Census and the allocation of $400 million to address continued challenges caused by the coronavirus pandemic. According to the Census Bureau, an estimated 37 percent of households currently remain uncounted in this year’s census, and in Arizona’s First Congressional District the figure is closer to 55 percent.
“Census data informs where we need to build more schools and roads, but also how much funding our hospitals and health care centers receive from the federal government in times like these. Arizona’s rural and tribal communities experience some of the most significant barriers to responding to the census—many of which have been exacerbated by COVID-19—and stand to gain the most from the funds, grants, and programs made possible by an accurate census count,” said O’Halleran. “As our nation works to combat the coronavirus pandemic, we must adapt to new challenges while ensuring we prioritize the implementation of a complete and accurate census so that all our communities can get counted.”
The lawmakers’ letter follows a previous bipartisan agreement to delay the census count deadline and a recent announcement by the Census Bureau to suddenly end field data collection by September 30. In the letter, the lawmakers ask that the next COVID-19 relief package extend statutory reporting deadlines for apportionment and redistricting data, allocate $400 million to address continued 2020 Census challenges, and modify the deadline to transmit state population totals to April 30, 2021.
View the letter HERE.