Representative TJ Cox Releases Report Highlighting the Costs of a Census Undercount

May 15, 2020
Press Release

Today, Representative TJ Cox (CA-21) released a report prepared by the staff of the Committee on Oversight and Reform and Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties urging everyone to complete their Census forms now to avoid the dire costs of an undercount for the 21st District.

Rep. Cox is urging households in the Central Valley to fill out their Census forms right now—in the comfort of their own homes—by going online at https://2020census.gov/, calling 844-330-2020, or filling out the forms they received in the mail. Filling out the census form online is quick and easy, and helps everyone maintain social distancing by saving the Census Bureau employees a trip to your home. The 2020 Census has only 12 questions and does not ask about citizenship. The Census Bureau is barred from releasing an individual’s information to anyone, including law enforcement, immigration officials, or even your landlord.

"This year’s census will help determine how billions of your tax dollars get distributed and whether that money comes back to the Central Valley. If even one percent of residents aren’t counted in our communities, we could lose hundreds of thousands of dollars in funding. These dollars are critical for health care, education, senior and youth services, housing and transportation, and much more,” said Rep. Cox. “We all count, and we all can help to shape the Central Valley’s future by participating in the upcoming Census. Please fill out the census online, by phone, or mailing back the form you receive in the mail as soon as you can to make sure that we are all counted, and that our communities can get the financial assistance they deserve."

Data collected by the Census is used to determine how much funding the district receives for critical services like education, medical care, foster care, roads, public transit, and job programs. Census data also helps local governments enhance public safety and prepare for emergencies.

The new report details that every miscounted person in the district could reduce yearly education funding by $1,236 and job training by $243. If there is just a 1% undercount in the 2020 Census, communities in the 21st District of California could lose:

  • $630,000 in federal funding for schools that have a high proportion of low-income students, or the equivalent of all the textbooks that 2,516 students would need in a school year.
  • $335,000 in federal funding for job training centers and career counseling.

Click here to read the full report.