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Clark ahead of state in census response

Clark County is ahead of Kentucky in its residents’ response to the U.S. Census, and there’s still plenty of time to respond.

Clark County GIS Coordinator Stephen Berry, who is supporting local  census efforts, said Monday that 49.6 percent of Clark Countians have already responded to the 2020 Census questionnaire. Across Kentucky, 45.6 percent have responded, according to census data.

The census is a federally mandated count of everyone in the U.S. The data is used in a number of ways, including determining congressional districts and funding.

The ongoing coronavirus pandemic, though, has brought delays to most phases of the census.

According to www.census.gov, the self-reporting phase has been extended from July 31 to Aug. 14. In this phase, residents respond to the questionnaire either online, by phone or through the mail.

The virus, though, has halted public presentations.

“The only thing that’s been put on hold is the public outreach,” Berry said. “I haven’t had any communication from the census beyond that. They’re still pushing us to do virtual stuff and social media stuff.”

In 2010, about 78 percent of Clark Countians responded, he said, so there is plenty of room for improvement.

“We’re trying to push it to 80 percent,” Berry said.

According to the census website, other phases have been delayed until May 1 at the earliest. The website says plans are still on schedule to deliver the apportionment counts to the president by Dec. 31 and the redistricting counts to the states by April 1, 2021.

About Fred Petke

Fred Petke is a reporter for The Winchester Sun. His beats include cops, courts, fire, public records, city and county government and other news. To contact Fred, email fred.petke@winchestersun.com or call 859-759-0051.

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