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Complete the census at downtown TARTA hub

Published: Sep. 29, 2020 at 5:12 PM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - The window to fill out this year’s census is closing. The Census Bureau announced that this year’s count will end on October 5th, despite a federal judge’s ruling last week that it should be extended through October 31st. This means those door-to-door operations and your ability to self-report will end on Monday.

The census determines how many representatives we get in Congress and how federal money is allocated. Local census workers want an accurate census count so our area can get as many federal dollars as possible for things like roads and schools so they’re doing what they can to sign up as many people as possible, including setting up a tent at the Toledo Area Regional Transit Authority (TARTA) hub downtown to help people fill out the online form.

This is part of a coordinated effort with TARTA, the City of Toledo, and the Toledo-Lucas County Library. Workers were out yesterday signing people up as they waited for the bus.

“I didn’t know what it was when I was down there, and I signed up to help,” says Tyrone Coleman.

Toledo-Lucas County 2020 census coordinator Deborah Barnett says that a major gap in the census count is in people without access to the internet, so the workers setting up at TARTA can help anyone - no internet required.

Taking the census is required by law, but that is difficult to enforce, so the U.S. Census Bureau urges everyone to respond so their area can get all the benefits it deserves.

“It funds our schools. It funds our library. It helps improve our roads, so it’s important that we get as many people counted so we can get as much money because there’s no do-overs," says Barnett. "As soon as we submit that count, we have to live with that count for ten years.”

Workers at the TARTA hub on Huron and Cherry from 11:30-4:30 Tuesday and Wednesday. Completing the census takes two minutes, they’ll do all the work for you, and you get a goodie bag when you’re finished.

You can also get help with completing the census at your nearest local library.

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