Doña Ana County

COUNTY BEGINS WORK TO ASSIST IN 2020 CENSUS

COUNTY BEGINS WORK TO ASSIST IN 2020 CENSUS

            About 50 Doña Ana County residents, staff members and community stakeholders met Friday morning with U.S. Census officials to begin collaborations on forming a Complete Count Committee – a group of people in Doña Ana County that will assist in obtaining the most accurate count of residents in 2020.
            Under the U.S. Constitution, a total count of the population in the United States must be conducted every 10 years. The next count will take place on Census Day, April 1, 2020, and also throughout a self-reporting phase which is ongoing May through July.
On Nov. 13, the Doña Ana County Board of Commissioners approved a resolution creating a Complete Count Committee in advance of the 2020 Census. 
          “There is much at stake here,” noted Doña Ana County Manager Fernando R. Macias, who welcomed the group Friday morning at 9 a.m. in the Board of County Commissioners chambers at the Doña Ana County Government Center. “Our county is unique in that we are comprised of many diverse neighborhoods in our outermost rural areas, from Garfield to Sunland Park. It is imperative that we deploy as many resources as possible to ensure that our residents know the count is important, accurate, and safe. Together with the City of Las Cruces and our surrounding municipalities, I am confident this will be a successful endeavor, and we look forward to the partnership.
            Representatives from the U.S. Census Bureau were in attendance Friday, and walked attendees through a timeline of events that will begin in 2019 leading up to the actual count in 2020.  
            “These committees are essentially meeting to strategize the best way to reach residents in Doña Ana County who – for whatever reason – are not responding to the mailers that the Census Bureau will be sending out,” said Elaine Avina, with the U.S. Census Bureau, Denver Region. 
            Census self-report forms will be available in paper form, online and by phone, said Paulina Lopez, who was also representing the U.S. Census Bureau, Denver Region. Lopez and Avina were joined by two local partnership specialists who will work closely with the Doña Ana County Complete Count Committee. 
            Federal funding to Doña Ana County is a direct result of the U.S. Census count, according to Lopez. It is also how proper representation in the legislature is appropriated. 
            “Our mission is to count everyone once, and only once, and in the right place,” said Lopez.          
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Reporters seeking more information or interviews may call Doña Ana County Communication Specialist Kelly Jameson at (575) 386-4302.

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