Count Ottawa County In!
Education. Roads. Medicare/Medicaid. What do these things have in common? They’re all services funded in part by using U.S. Census data. Mandated in Article 1, Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution, census statistics help determine how billions of federal dollars are distributed to communities across the country. By participating in the census, you can help shape Ottawa County’s future. Click here to complete the census now.
How do I respond?
The 2020 U.S. Census is now underway. You can complete the census:
Earlier this year, many households were sent an invitation to participate that features a Census ID for completing the Census online. But if you didn’t get it — don’t worry! You can still fill it out. Households that haven’t replied yet will also receive a paper survey.
View examples of the official census invitation and form below.
For more on who to count, click here.
Sample Census Invitation
Sample Census Invitation
Sample Census Form
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Census?
Every 10 years, the U.S. Census Bureau conducts a census to determine the number of people living in the United States. Click here for more information.
What will the census ask?
The Census asks for basic personal information, like name, gender, age, birthday, race/ethnicity, relationship to head-of-household, whether you own or rent, and phone number. The Census will not ask about citizenship or immigration status.
Who gets counted?
Census forms are filled out by one member of the household. Everyone living at the address matters and everyone needs to be counted, including children.
How Is census information used?
Being counted helps communities create jobs, provide housing, fund K-12 education, prepare for emergencies, and build schools, roads, hospitals and libraries, as well determine government representation.
How does the census affect elections?
Census data is used to determine how many seats each state gets in Congress. State and local officials use census data to draw state, local legislative and school district boundaries.
Are my answers safe?
The information you provide the Census Bureau is completely confidential. The agency never identifies anyone individually. It combines your responses with information from other households or businesses to produce statistics. Title 13 of the U.S. Code protects the confidentiality of respondents’ information; violating this law is a crime. Other federal laws, including the Confidential Statistical Efficiency Act and Privacy Act reinforce these protections. No law enforcement agency (DHS, ICE, the FBI or CIA) can access or use your personal information from the Census. Click here for more on confidentiality. En español.
The official ‘Census Day,’ April 1, has passed. Am I too late?
No. The Census date is intended to be a reference point - you include everyone living in your home on that date in 2020. You have until Oct. 31 to fill it out.
Does the Census only count citizens?
No – the Constitution specifically requires an “actual Enumeration” of “all persons” — regardless of citizenship status — meaning all people count. The 2020 Census does not ask whether you or anyone who lives with you is a U.S. citizen.
How do you identify an official census taker?
You may have a federal employee visit you to complete the census. All census workers carry badges that include their name, photo, Department of Commerce watermark, and an expiration date, and an official bag with the Census Bureau logo on it. A census taker will only ask you questions that appear on the census. A census taker will never ask for your citizenship status; driver’s license; Social Security Number; credit card, bank, or other financial information; money or a donation; or PIN codes or passwords. If you would like to confirm the person at your door is a Census Bureau employee, you can enter their name into the Census Bureau’s staff search website or call the Regional Census Center in Chicago at 1-800-865-6384.
What if I moved or am moving?
You can fill out your census form over the phone or online. When filling it out, please use the address you lived at on April 1, 2020, and include anyone who was living with you on that date.
You don’t have to be able to read or speak English to complete the census. The census offers 60 language support guides, large print and braille forms. Click here for a full list of language guides.
How is the count going?
Help get the word out! Below are valuable resources from the U.S. Census Bureau to share with your family and community members. Ottawa County: Count Us In!
For more information visit: 2020census.gov