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March 27, 2019


2020 Census is at risk of being inaccurate

(Mar. 26) – The State, Veterans, & Military Affairs House committee passed a bill sponsored by Rep. Kerry Tipper, D-Lakewood, and Rep. Yadira Caraveo, D-Thornton, that would create a committee to disperse funds around the state that would ensure a complete count of all Coloradans across the state. The 2020 Census is underfunded and behind schedule.

“Experts agree that the census is in jeopardy compared to ten years ago,” said Rep. Tipper. “This is a critical issue that will impact every level of government. Even a one percent undercount on the census would result in the state losing out on over $630 million across a decade in federal money.This is a health equity issue and will have a disparate impact on rural communities.”

Valid Census data is tied to billions of dollars federal funding allocations for Colorado. For example, the state received over $93 million in federal funding for Head Start programs and nearly $34 million in Community Development Block Grants in 2016 because of census data.

HB19-1239 creates an appointed bipartisan and diverse committee, administered by the Dept. of Local Affairs, to award grants to nonprofits and local governments to ensure a complete count across all of Colorado for the 2020 Census.

“The census determines so much for our state. We are in competition with other states for federal dollars. It is in our best interest to compete for the federal pie. This bill will help get us there. This is about counting people,” said Rep. Caraveo.

The bill passed on a bipartisan vote of 7-2. Rep. Janice Rich, R-Grand Junction, joined Democrats in supporting HB19-1239. The bill now goes to the House Appropriations committee.

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