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2020 Census assistance available at Enterprise mayor’s office

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Published: Jul. 16, 2020 at 3:36 PM CDT
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Press Release: City of Enterprise

ENTERPRISE, Ala. (PR) - Are you the mom of an elementary school child who receives a free or reduced-price lunch? Are you the parent of a college student who got the opportunity to seek a degree because of a Pell Grant?

Are you part of a family that has good food to eat every week thanks to the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program? Do you receive help in paying your rent through a community action program or a housing authority?

Do your children enjoy activities at the local community center, and are you more comfortable driving along a smooth street or highway that has recently been repaved or repaired?

If you could answer yes to any or all of those questions, you have to give credit to the U.S. Census Bureau, said Enterprise Mayor William E. Cooper.

With just a few weeks before 2020 Census workers start a door-to-door effort to register all residents, Cooper strongly urges everyone who has not yet submitted their census form to step up on behalf of their community and fellow citizens.

“We stand to lose valuable resources that are needed to continue helping our residents in all types of ways,” he said. “I realize that we’ve been talking about the census now for months, and we have been distracted by the Coronavirus threat in our state and nation. But I cannot stress enough the importance of completing your 2020 Census.”

That’s why he and city officials are trying to make it easier for those who do not have access to a computer to fill out the forms online, or for those who may need help for some other reason.

Census assistance is available at City Hall on any weekday.

“Just call us at 348-2602 or stop by my office at City Hall and one of our staff members will be happy to help you complete your census,” Cooper said.

He also asked everyone to remember his challenge. A retired educator and band director, Cooper still enjoys playing his trumpet. Consequently, he has agreed to play the trumpet in a very brief concert in front of City Hall in August if the citizens come through with a good census count.

“I really do want to play my trumpet for you, so please fill out your census,” he said. “It only takes a few minutes of your time, but it will mean 10 years worth of benefits to you, our city and our state.”

Currently, less than 65 percent of the people of Enterprise have completed the 2020 Census. The goal is 100 percent, and Cooper said every single person is asked to do their duty as a citizen and fill out the forms either on line at www.my2020census.gov or by phone, 844-330-2020, or by regular mail. Residents should have received correspondence from the Census Bureau several times in recent months.

“An accurate population count in our city and throughout the United States is extremely important – the very well-being of the people or our community is at stake,” the Mayor said.

Getting a complete census count is a serious and extremely important subject, he said, noting that Alabama could receive about $13 billion in federal funding if the population is counted correctly to reflect the growth that Alabama leaders believe the state has experienced since the last decennial census in 2010.

“If we do not get a complete count, or at least as close to 100 percent as we can possibly get, we stand to lose funding,” he said. “We want Enterprise to have a chance to receive its fair share of that $13 billion.”

Another critical factor, he stressed, is the impact a poor count could have on Alabama’s representation in the U.S. Congress. Alabama leaders have said if the state census completion count does not surpass the 72 percent mark from 2010, the state may very well lose a Congressional seat.

“We do not need to lose that voice in government,” Cooper said.

Attaining that 100-percent participation means signing up everyone, including low-income neighborhoods and the homeless, and Census Bureau information shows that sometimes those are the hardest people to reach. He asked those who have completed their census forms to encourage others to do so.

Soon, the Census Bureau will be beginning their door-to-door campaign to residences where no one has submitted a census form.

“We can all help out by going ahead and getting those forms done and submitted. Then there will be no need for a person visit from the Census Bureau.”

Copyright 2020 WTVY. All rights reserved.

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