BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WMBB) — Residents across Bay County will soon be getting census invitations in the mail. Officials are sending them out on Thursday as the 2020 Census begins.
Leaders from Bay County, the Bay County Chamber of Commerce and Panama City officials gathered Thursday at the Government Center for a kick-off event.
More than $675 billion in federal funds will be appropriated based on population counts taken during the census to be used for schools, hospitals, roads, public works, and other vital programs.
The data gathered from the census is also used to secure fair representation in government. Every 10 years, the results of the census are used to determine how many seats each state gets in the House of Representatives.
Juia Maddalena is part of Leadership Bay and served as a speaker at the event. She says the process for residents will be easy as they fill out the forms.
“Invitations are going out in the mail, you should start receiving them between now and March 20. Those invitations will tell you that you can apply online, over the telephone, or by mail. And this is actually the first time in history you can apply online, it should only take about 10 minutes, so it’s never really been easier to complete the census,” Maddalena said.
County leaders encourage residents to get this done as soon as possible as getting the right number ensures securing funds and local economic support for the next 10 years.
They also say this is even more important since Hurricane Michael.
Also, new this year, residents can fill out the census online. You can do so here.