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The 2020 census will soon be underway in Harvey County, and has already begun in parts of the United States. In the coming weeks, Harvey County residents will receive census count forms from the U.S. Census Bureau.

As outlined in the U.S. Constitution, the census is required every 10 years. It is performed to get an updated total of the populations of cities, counties, states and the country.

Federal funding is tied to population. That funding helps provide parks, schools, fire stations and dozens of other critical services.

Kansas receives $6 billion in annual federal funding based off census figures. One person uncounted equates to $2,082 of federal funding missed for the state each year.

The census count also affects representation, as it is used to determined legislative seats and district maps.

The census also plays a vital role in the strength of a local economy. Businesses use census data to better understand where there is a business need, which can mean more local resources and jobs.

Filling out the census takes about 10 minutes. The information individuals provide in the census is, by law, confidential. The law requires its confidentiality for 72 years.

Individuals can complete the census by mail, phone, online or in-person with a U.S. Census Bureau enumerator. You can view a sample of the census form here.

Census forms are available in 13 languages. There are also video and print guides available in 59 non-English languages, as well as American Sign Language, braille and large print.

You can learn more about the census here.