States’ Preparations for the 2020 Census: Findings

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The 2020 Census is just two-and-a-half years away. The Census Bureau is setting up field operations and data capture systems, address lists, geographic data, and more. States and State Data Centers are partners in some of this preparation. States share an interest in the Census’s goal of a complete and accurate count of the nation’s population.

To assess readiness and identify needs, the State Data Center Steering Committee conducted a survey in September 2017 of states’ early-stage preparations and plans for participation in 2020 Census programs and support.  Responses were received from 66 agencies in 52 states and territories. Forty-nine of these agencies are SDC State Leads; the remaining respondents are Governor’s Liaisons to the Census or FSCPE participants in agencies separate from the SDC State Leads. (In many cases, the FSCPE participants are SDC coordinating agencies.)

This report summarizes the state’s answers and status of preparations as of September  2017. These answers will change over the next 1-2 years, particularly with respect to upcoming program activities that are expected but will not formally begin until 2018 or beyond.

 

Question: Does your SDC or State government have plans for 2020 Census outreach, engagement, or promotion? If so, please describe.

  • 5 states responded “No.”
  • 46 states responded “Yes” and provided details. The most frequent answers are as follows:
    • Outreach and promotion, including creation of new websites (n= 11)
    • Complete Count Committee development (10)
    • LUCA training, information sessions, and outreach (7)
    • Events – Workshops, Annual conferences (7)
    • Connections with other agencies, governments (5)
    • Connections with other organizations, i.e. nonprofits, libraries (4)
    • Still in planning: details not provided (12)
  • 4 states did not participate in the survey.
  • 1 state skipped this question on the survey.

Question: Does your SDC or State government have plans for LUCA? Choose one (or more) statements that best describes plans.

  • 35 states have agencies (including 26 SDC State Leads) registering for LUCA data review.
  • 21 states (and 21 SDC State Leads) are providing outreach and promotion, or hosting meetings.
  • 17 states (including 14 SDC State Leads) are providing technical expertise or consultation.
  • 8 states (including 5 SDC State Leads) are providing validation data resources to local LUCA participants.
  • 7 states (and 7 SDC State Leads) indicated they were considering the LUCA program and had not reached a decision at the time of survey.

Question: Does your SDC or State government plan to participate in OTHER 2020 Census preparations? If so, please describe.

  • 40 States responded “Yes.” States were invited to provide open-ended descriptions of their plans. Thus the tallies here are likely to be incomplete. The most frequent answers are as follows:
    • Outreach, promotion, and engagement (9)
    • Whatever we can/whatever is included in our MOU (7)
    • Participant Statistical Area Program (PSAP) (6)
    • Redistricting in the state (6)
    • FSCPE – Count review (6)
    • FSCPE – Group quarters (5)
    • Plan still being developed (5)

Question: Does your SDC or State government have (or plan to have) DEDICATED FUNDING for any of the 2020 Census activities discussed above?

  • 4 states answered “Yes, my SDC or agency has dedicated funding.”
  • 11 states answered “Not yet, we will request (or have requested) such funding.”
  • 12 states answered “Don’t know, or still to be determined.”
  • 25 states answered “No, our state has no dedicated budget for 2020 Census.”

Question: If you answered ‘Yes’ or ‘Not Yet’ to the previous question, please provide budget details.

  • California – $10 million
  • Massachusetts – $190,000
  • Minnesota – $190,000
  • Michigan – 2 FTE
  • North Carolina – $1 million (requested, not yet finalized)
  • Virginia – $115,000 (requested, not yet finalized)
  • Other states were in the process of requesting funding, but did not indicate an amount

Question: What are your SDC or agency’s roles in 2020 Census? Check all that apply.

  • 35 states have agencies (including 26 SDC State Leads) registering for LUCA data review
  • 19 states have agencies (including 17 SDC State Leads) that will staff state-level Complete Count Commissions
    • More states are likely to become involved; these numbers will likely rise.
  • 18 states have agencies (including 17 SDC State Leads) that will be involved in redistricting at the state-level
    • More states are likely to become involved; these numbers will likely rise.

Question: Does your SDC need any advice in preparing for 2020 Census? Please describe your greatest concern or need.

  • 21 states responded “No.”
  • 30 states responded “Yes.” The most frequent answers are as follows:
    • Help from Census Bureau – including prioritized list of needed state input, calendar outline of important programs, Complete Count Committee process and details (5)
    • What other states are doing – including their budgets, operations plans (5)
    • “All of us are new, so any advice is welcome!” (4)
    • How to create a plan with no new funding or staff (3)
    • Ideas and best practices, sharing promotional materials across SDC network (2)
    • How to improve outreach, reaching Hard to Count populations (2)
    • Coordination and resources needed for all the activities/programs (2)
    • Coordination with Island Areas Branch – everything is planned by IAB (2)
  • 4 states did not participate in the survey.
  • 1 state skipped this question on the survey.

Question: What were your SDC or agency’s roles in 2010 Census programs? Check all that apply.

  • 26 states (including 21 SDC State Leads) participated in LUCA (2007-2008).
  • 23 states (including 19 SDC States Leads) staffed Complete Count Commissions (2008-2010).
  • 16 states (including 15 SDC States Leads) participated in PSAP (2008-2009).
  • 26 states (including 25 SDC States Leads) participated in PUMA areas delineation (2011).
  • 35 states (including 33 SDC States Leads) were involved in outreach and promotion of 2010 Census.
  • 11 states (including 9 SDC States Leads) had a role in post-2010 redistricting.

 

This survey was administered by Metropolitan Council, a government agency in Minnesota, as a service to the Census SDC steering committee. The information collected here is public data, per the disclosure notice provided to respondents, and per Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 13.

Collected data is available to SDC agencies and Census Bureau staff.

This summary report was prepared by Mallory Bateman, Utah SDC, and Todd Graham, Metropolitan Council (Minnesota).

Comments and corrections can be directed to Todd Graham, SDC Steering Committee.

 

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