Content Marketing: Article for County Census Count Effort

A widely used rule of thumb says that each person counted in the U.S. Census represents $1,800 a year in federal funding. Oakland County has an estimated 211,507 people who are at risk of being undercounted, according to the Michigan Department of State. That would come to more than $380 million a year, or more than $3.8 billion over the course of a decade, in potentially lost revenue. For reference, Oakland County’s 2020 budget is $922 million.

“We rely upon federal funding for a great many of our programs that directly affect people and the quality of life in our county. We are a prosperous county, but we have a lot of people who experience hardship, who are living close to the poverty line, that these programs help ensure stability and a better life for,” says County Commissioner Janet Jackson (D-Southfield). She also is chair of the county’s Complete Count Committee, which is working to raise the rate of people who are counted in the 2020 Census.

The county is known for its robust economy. And its 2010 self-response rate of 74.8 percent was better than the national rate of 66.5 percent and the state’s rate of 69.5 percent. But that doesn’t mean it wants to leave money on the table.

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