The push to have people fill out their Census forms | Prairie Public Broadcasting

The push to have people fill out their Census forms

Jul 16, 2020

So far, 61.6 percent of North Dakota households have responded to the 2020 Census.

The national average is 62 percent.

"Of the 50 states, we're the 26th," said North Dakota Census Office Manager Kevin Iverson.

Iverson said at the end of June, postcards were sent to everyone with a post office box, reminding them to fill out the Census. He said the Census Bureau plans another mailing in a few weeks, to all households that have not yet responded. And Iverson said in early August, Census workers will start going door-to-door.

"When you haven't responded to the Census, the federal government doesn't go away," Iverson said. "It's like if you don't respond to the IRS. They will come knocking on your door -- and the same thing is true with the Census Bureau."

And if you don't answer your door, Iverson said it's far worse than what the IRS will do.

"They will go and talk to your neighbors," Iverson said.

Iverson is encouraging people to respond – and take the few minutes to fill out the form online, rather than having to answer a knock on the door. He said the goal is a complete count, so no one is missed. Iverson said without that complete count, North Dakota could be leaving some federal funding on the table.