ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - Leaders in South Georgia want everyone to know that the 2020 Census will determine federal and state funding that will greatly impact the future of the region.
Activists held a forum Thursday in an effort to explain to South Georgians the importance of everyone answering the Census for 2020.
Jessica King said she was shocked to learn Thursday which age group in South Georgia wasn’t counted fully in the 2010 census.
“I think with all the new changes that are taking place, a lot of people thought it would be our seniors that aren’t able to fill it out quickly, but it actually turned out that it is the young people,” said King.
Albany Mayor Dorothy Hubbard told South Georgians that the 2020 Census will determine how much federal funding that the Second Congressional District will receive.
“The funds we receive from the federal government are dependent on the numbers, the boundaries set for voting are dependent on the numbers. Everything that is done for our city, all the things we will get from the federal government are based on the numbers,” explained Hubbard.
The average funds a city loses per person who isn’t counted can be a bit drastic.
“We stand the chance of losing as much as between $2,300 and $2,500 dollars per person who is not counted," said Mayor Hubbard.
Redistricting and Voting Rights Policy Specialist Fred McBride said the census determines your school districts and how big or small a district legislation line can be drawn.
“State legislators as well as local and city council and school boards will be drawing district lines. The Census is important because in order for us to get fair districts, we’ve got to have people counted,” implored McBride.
King said she will take the new information she learned at Thursday’s forum and spread the word in her neighborhood.
“So, it was really interesting today coming here and learning more ways to engage young people like myself in filling out the Census,” King said.
The 2020 Census is set to start April 1.
People will now be able to sign up using their mobile devices, computers and over the phone.
South Georgians will start receiving Census forms in April of 2020.