Stevens County Coordinator Rebecca Young.

A U.S. Census Bureau official told the Stevens County Board of Commissioners last week that the County had a concerning high rate of non-participants during the last Census in 2010. County Coordinator Rebecca Young told the KMRS Community Connection that she agreed that much government money is at stake with getting as complete a count of residents in the county as possible and that funding cuts a wide swath over many different County departments.

“The challenge is the hard to count populations: our youth, our young, young folks, our students that are transitional, our elderly and maybe our folks that don’t have English as their primary language,” said Young. “The other piece is some of those that are migrant working status or maybe immigrated in are very difficult to count as well.”

Young pointed out that the Census data is under strict privacy and confidentiality laws and cannot be shared with any other federal agencies, such as the IRS, Department of Homeland Security or the FBI. Information will be gathered in the spring by a simple form that can be completed online for the first time, by mail or by phone.

The Census Bureau still needs workers throughout west central Minnesota. The pay rate for the temporary, flexible jobs was increased from $14 to $18.50 per hour. Apply at 2020Census.gov/jobs.

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