Chester County Commissioners Michelle Kichline, Kathi Cozzone, and Terence Farrell have approved a resolution calling for the formation of a countywide Census 2020 Complete Count Committee (CCC) to encourage all residents’ participation in the census survey.
The CCC is a group of volunteers who, at the local level, develop and implement a 2020 Census awareness campaign based upon their knowledge of the local community. The CCC is comprised of government and community leaders from education, business, healthcare, and other community organizations.
“The ultimate goal of the countywide committee is to maximize Chester County’s participation in the 2020 Census,” said Chester County Commissioners’ Chair Michelle Kichline. “Ensuring that every county resident gets counted is important since many federally funded grant programs are population-based and our state and federal legislative districts are population-based.
“In addition, government and business planning often depends on accurate census data. Funding for important resources such as roads, hospitals, schools, and public works is distributed to communities based on census data. This helps the county maintain its strong sense of place.”
The county’s 2019 adopted budget includes $190.2 million in federal and state grants, which represent 40 percent of Chester County’s $476 million operating budget.
“The main focus of the committee is to conduct outreach with neighborhoods and communities that had a low response rate during the last census,” said Cozzone. “These areas tend to be low to moderate income, recent immigrant communities, or areas with a significant transient population, such as college students.”
Approximately 522,000 people currently live in Chester County, according to 2018 census data. This grew from the 2010 census count of 498,886 residents in Chester County. The county’s population is expected to increase 30 percent over the next 30 years.
“During the development of the county’s new comprehensive plan, Landscapes3, we learned that Chester County is the fastest-growing county in southeastern Pennsylvania,” said Farrell. “That’s why filling out the 2020 Census is so important. An accurate count of residents will help us plan for future growth and ensure the continuation of important services for all residents, including senior citizens, individuals with disabilities, and those in need of housing assistance.”
Census Day is April 1, 2020. Every household will have the option to respond to the short survey online, by mail, or by phone. By law, the Census Bureau must keep all responses confidential and is not permitted to share answers with any other government agency. The U.S. Constitution has required a decennial census since 1790.
Click here for more information on the 2020 Census and Chester County’s Complete County Committee.