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April 11, 2019


2020 Census is at risk of being inaccurate

(Apr. 11) – The House 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 to ensure a complete count of all Coloradans across the state. The 2020 Census is underfunded and behind schedule.

“It is critical that we count every person in Colorado, especially as our economy and population grows,” said Rep. Tipper. “Even a one percent undercount could result in the state losing out on over $630 million in critical transportation, healthcare and education dollars.”

Valid census data is tied to billions of dollars of federal funding allocations for Colorado. The state is estimated to receive over $1,480 per person annually from the federal government based on population numbers from the Census. Census dollars help fund transportation (public transit, road rehabilitation and construction); Head Start programs; Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Food Nutrition Service, Health and human services programs, and more.

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, it impacts every level of government and our state’s future,” said Rep. Caraveo. “We are in competition with 49 other states for federal dollars. It is in our best interest to compete for the federal pie of dollars and this bill will help with that.”

The bill passed by a vote of 41-23. In the House State, Military and Veterans Affairs committee, the bill passed on a bipartisan vote of 7-2 with Rep. Janice Rich, R-Grand Junction, joining Democrats in supporting HB19-1239. Rich did not support the bill on the House floor.

HB19-1239 now goes to the Senate.

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