2020 Census Is Vital For State of Illinois

MARSHALL, Ill. (WTHI) - The 2020 Census is coming up on April 1st. Indiana and Illinois are already hard at work getting the word out about its importance, but in Illinois, this year's census has a sense of urgency.

Illinois has lost population for six straight years. In that time frame, they've lost over 100 thousand residents. That's according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Census data, of course, determines state and federal funding, and Illinois is putting a big effort in to make sure their funding stays right where it is.

According to the Illinois Department of Human Services, the Land of Lincoln announced over $20 million was awarded for census outreach. That's more than any other state

"People are leaving in droves and Illinois is the worst now," Complete Count Chairman of Clark County Warren Lefever said.

He says the government has put a massive focus on increasing census participation. "It's quite staggering," he said, "That's what Illinois is doing--trying to get as many people as possible counted."

If they don't, the state will lose a substantial amount of money. "Every person is worth, over census time, more than $20,000 of revenue coming in from the Federal Government," Lefever concluded.

So what's the solution? Lefever says this year, residents can fill out the census forms online. The state is putting an emphasis on this to make it easier for people. You will receive directions in the mail with the census form.