Why Do We Take the Census?
The U.S. Constitution mandates a headcount every 10 years of everyone residing in the states and U.S. territories, including people of all ages, races, ethnic groups, citizens, and noncitizens. The census determines the number of seats each state has in the House of Representatives. States also use the totals to redraw their legislative and school districts. The population totals also affect funding in our community, and data collected in the census help decision makers know how our community is changing. City departments, public schools, and the non-profit community rely on data to design appropriate programming and services.
Approximately $675 billion in federal funding is distributed to communities each year. Every person not counted represents a loss of $2000 dollars of federal funding to a community.