Preparations underway for 2020 census

Published 9:58 am Friday, July 19, 2019

Preparation for the 2020 census is underway as the federal government is in the midst of hiring workers across the nation, including Clark County.

The federal government uses information from the census, which the U.S. Census Bureau completes every 10 years, for allocating seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, determining government funds, deciding on infrastructure projects and more.

Raymond Caputo, a U.S. Census Bureau recruiter, said the census process is lengthy, so the bureau is looking for additional workers to help gather information for the survey.

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Caputo said he could not give an exact number of positions open, but the short answer is the bureau is hiring a lot of people.

However, Caputo said the first round of hiring has a limited amount of positions due to a limited number of iPhone 6s, which workers use on the job.

“There is no door-knocking,” Caputo said.

The census work lasts for about 16 months. Caputo said census work is in stages; the first stage is address verification, which includes ensuring the address on the house or mailbox is accurate.

If the verification phase goes fast in Clark County, the bureau may ask workers to work in other counties that aren’t proceeding as quickly.

To qualify for the job, an applicant must be a U.S. citizen over the age of 18. Applicants must also have an email address and have transportation, which means no hitching a ride in an Uber or from a family member.

Caputo said it’s a great gig. It pays $14 an hour and 58 cents a mile, and payment is by direct deposit or paper check. Each worker receives a W-2 since they will be a temporary, part-time federal employee.

Caputo said there are waivers for interested applicants who draw Social Security benefits or Section 8.

Workers work in the county they live, and the hours are flexible. Workers could work during the morning, afternoon, early evenings or weekends and can even split the hours such as working a shift in the morning and a shift in the early evening. Workers cannot work at night. Though, Caputo said the bureau presently is looking for people who can work 30 hours a week.

The bureau pays workers and pays for the training. Caputo said supervisors are already training.

He said, as the census progresses, the bureau would be hiring more people.

Caputo said the application takes about 20 minutes. Applicants will need their Social Security number. Men will need their Selective Service number, and the page has a link to help applicants find it if needed. Caputo said the waiting period might vary, but applicants will hear from the bureau in regards to their eligibility either by email or phone.

Caputo said veterans get preference when it comes to hiring, and “disabled veterans go to the top of the list.”

Eligible applicants will have to pass a federal fingerprint background check, which the U.S. Census Bureau funds. Caputo said the bureau would be hiring through February 2020.

People can apply at

“It’s a great job,” Caputo said. “I’m a retired federal employee. And after I retired, I did this with the Census Bureau 10 years ago, and I had a blast.”

Editor’s note: An earlier version of this article stated there was a waiver for Medicaid recipients. That is incorrect; there is no waiver for Medicaid recipients, only for Section 8 and social security. The Sun regrets error.