August 16, 2019 Meeting Minutes

2020 Census Everyone Counts

Illinois Census 2020 Advisory Panel
August 16, 2019
9:30 am

IDHS Harris Building - 100 S. Grand Avenue, 3rd Floor, Springfield
James R. Thompson Center - 100 W. Randolph, Suite 16-504, Chicago

Panel members in Chicago: Former State Representative Mike Fortner, State Representative Elizabeth Hernandez, State Representative Theresa Mah, Maria Pesqueira

Panel members in Springfield: None

Panel members participating by phone: Deborah Bennet, State Senator Sen. Jil Tracy,

Panel members absent: State Senator Kimberly Lightford, State Senator Dan McConchie, State State Senator Andy Manar, Senator Iris Martinez, State Representative Ryan Spain, State Representative Andre Thapedi

Staff in attendance: Sol Flores, Deputy Governor, Office of the Governor; Lizzy Whitehorn, First Deputy Governor, Office of the Governor; Kia Coleman, Assistant Secretary, IDHS; John Schomberg, IDHS; Irene Lyons, Illinois Secretary of State's Office; Elissa Johnson , U.S. Census Bureau; Grace Hou, Secretary, IDHS; Marishonta Wilkerson, IDHS; Hina Mahmood, IDHS; Emily Katalinich, IDHS; Ryan Croke, IDHS; Dan Weber, Illinois House Republican Staff; Sessy Nyman, IDHS; Dana Stroger, Senate Democrats; Paul Schroter, House Democrats; Joshua Horeled, Senate Republican Staff; Wanda Wright, Senator Lightford's staff;.

The meeting was called to order by Deputy Governor Sol Flores at 9:35 am

Welcome and Introductions

Sol Flores, Deputy Governor, welcomed all meeting participants and reviewed the agenda.

NOFO Overview

Kia Coleman, Assistant Secretary, provided a brief overview of the 2020 Census NOFO, including important dates, the funding allocation model, the 12 designated regions, and how the Illinois Hard-to-Count Index was created and used to determine the funding allocation for each region.

Census Office Co-Coordinators

Under Executive Order 2019-10, the Governor is to appoint two Census Office Co-Coordinators to direct the Census Office. Deputy Governor Flores introduced Marishonta Wilkerson, one of the Co-Coordinators, who began August 1, 2019. The second Co-Coordinator will be appointed soon.

Public Comment

Six people signed up and provided public comment.

Prior to public comment John Schomberg shared that the Census Advisory Panel and IDHS received a letter from the Count Me In 2020 Coalition comprised of Forefront, MALDEF, and Common Cause Illinois. He stated that answers to the questions in the letter would be posted on the Census Office's website.

Bryan Zeroff from Forefront expressed concern regarding the reporting requirement being a burden on Regional Intermediaries (RIs). Mr. Zeroff also inquired about what steps would be taken if there are regions without RI applications.

Steven Monroy from MALDEF expressed concerns regarding RIs' ability and capacity to reach all hard-to-count geographies and populations in their region.

Jay Young from Common Cause Illinois encouraged IDHS to utilize an equity lens in disbursing funds.

Kim McCahill from Age Options asked the panel to consider using a hub and spoke model for special populations like seniors.

Kareen Butler from Chicago Urban League asked questions about the negotiated rate and compensation for RIs for administrative aspects of the NOFO.

Kyle Smith from Metropolitan Mayors Caucus shared concerns about the GATA requirements for subgrantees.

Census 2020 Partner Updates

Elissa Johnson, Partnership Coordinator for the U.S. Census Bureau (USCB) Midwest Region, provided an update about census efforts in the Midwest and Illinois. She discussed the USCB's partnership strategy which includes 42 specialists on the ground with plans to increase to 225 partners, particularly for hard-to-count communities, to ensure that staff reflects those populations. She explained that early address canvasing has commenced and that Illinois will deploy 1,600 census workers this month. She concluded with an overview of the USCB timeline. A representative from Senator McConchie's office asked if Illinois qualified for waiver applications--permission for SNAP and TANF recipients to work for the USCB and not be at risk of losing their benefits. Ms. Johnson explained that 10 other states have already applied for waivers and committed to discussing this option with Census Office.

Eileen Lyons, from the Secretary of State's (SOS) Office, provided an update regarding the SOS's coordination and partnership with the Census Office.

Outreach and Data

Marishonta Wilkerson, Census Coordinator, gave an overview of the 2020 Census NOFO outreach efforts. The NOFO has been shared through the IDHS' listserv, social media, legislators, and press releases. To spread the word further, communications with congressional delegations as well as local government leaders would be dispersed soon. She asked panel members to inform the Census Office about town halls, events, and activities where the Census Office could share information about the NOFO. Ms. Wilkerson provided an overview of outreach data which includes 4,000 visits to the NOFO, 325 NOFO participants in the NOFO webinar, and over 100 questions and answers posted to the website.

Timeline Review

Sol Flores, Deputy Governor, reviewed the timeline for the NOFO release. Awards will be executed by October 31st and a second round of awards are anticipated with agreement execution by the end of March 2020.

Meeting Schedule

Sol Flores, Deputy Governor, noted that the next meeting is scheduled for September 20th. Monthly meeting dates are planned through July 2020. The meetings are scheduled to begin at9:30am, with an estimated meeting time of 2 hours.

Post-Meeting Survey

Sol Flores, Deputy Governor asked Panel members to complete a post-meeting survey.

The meeting adjourned at 10:55 am.