Citizens Not Responding to Census

As the U.S. Census Bureau continues its effort to count every person living in the country for the 2020 Census, self-response rates throughout rural Tennessee are well below the national response rate. Jackson County is faring better than some, with a 54.7% of households responding as of July 29, however that leaves a lot of residents uncounted. Macon, Smith, and Overton counties are responding roughly the same as Jackson County, while Clay County is struggling with just 41.7% of homes counted and Putnam County is exceeding the state response rate with 66% response.

The impact of undercounting residents will affect the community for the next decade. More than $675 billion in federal funds – trillions of dollars over the next decade – will be attached to population counts. Communities that are undercounted risk missing out on federal funding for an array of housing, transportation, health care, education, social services, and other programs.

For more on this story, pickup a copy of this week’s Jackson County Sentinel on newsstands now, or subscribe online at jacksoncountysentinel.net.

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