Redistricting begins with census data
- The framers of the Constitution of the United States chose population to be the basis for sharing political power, not wealth or land. A census aims to count the entire population of a country, and at the location where each person usually lives.The census asks questions of people in homes and group living situations, including how many people live or stay in each home, and the sex, age and race of each person. The goal is to count everyone once, only once, and in the right place.
- Federal funds, grants and support to states, counties and communities are based on population totals and breakdowns by sex, age, race and other factors. Your community benefits the most when the census counts everyone. When you respond to the census, you help your community gets its fair share of the more than $675 billion per year in federal funds spent on schools, hospitals, roads, public works and other vital programs.
- Businesses use census data to decide where to build factories, offices and stores, and this creates jobs. Developers use the census to build new homes and revitalize old neighborhoods. Local governments use the census for public safety and emergency preparedness. Residents use the census to support community initiatives involving legislation, quality-of-life and consumer advocacy. (US Census Bureau)
- See the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eq-FMB4epyw
Stand Up and Be Counted
- By April 1, 2020 every household will have received an invitation to participate in the census. You can respond online, by phone, or by mail.
- May 2020, the Census Bureau will begin visiting homes who have not responded to the census in person to make sure everyone is counted.
- Census will be online for the first time – communities lacking Internet connectivity like rural areas an economically disadvantaged communities risk an undercount.
- There is no Census Citizenship Question – but fear may cause an undercount of undocumented communities.
- Children are the most undercounted group. Why? See the article http://civilrightsdocs.info/pdf/census/Fact-Sheet-Undercount-of-Young-Children.pdf
Importance of a Complete Count
- An incomplete count means Nebraska loses federal dollars: “132 government programs used information from the census to determine how to allocate more than $675 billion, much of it for programs that serve lower-income families, including Head Start, Medicare, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, Pell grants for college and reduced-price school lunch programs. Highway spending is also apportioned according to census data” (NYTimes, March 27, 2018) https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/27/us/politics/census-citizenship-question.html.
- An incomplete count means Nebraska risks losing a Congressional seat.
- An incomplete count affects legislative and local districts.
- An incomplete count may affect how business operates in Nebraska.
Complete Count Positions
- Governor Ricketts rejected a Nebraska Complete Count Committee – most other states have a committee. See the article: https://www.omaha.com/news/state_and_regional/ricketts-makes-nebraska-one-of-two-states-without-a-census/article_d83460ec-c72f-5d29-bdac-d50ef6d4e630.html
- Without a State Complete Count Committee Nebraska risks an undercount of hard to count households.
- Civic Nebraska Started a Statewide Complete Count Alliance
Here are some links to Local Complete Count Census Committees
- Local committee are trying to pick up the slack
- Crete: Tom Ourada – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Grand Island: Chad Nabity email@example.com
- Lincoln/Lancaster County
- Norfolk: Josh Moenning – firstname.lastname@example.org
- North Platte: Renee White – email@example.com
- Schuyler: Amanda Klein – firstname.lastname@example.org
- South Sioux City
- Community Groups:
- South Platte United Chambers of Commerce
- Karen CCC: Pa Naw Dee – email@example.com
- Asian Community and Cultural Center CCC,
Omaha Empowerment Network,
- Southeast Community College