Our Statement on NY State's Funding for Census 2020
Statement from Brooklyn Community Foundation President and CEO
Cecilia Clarke in response to the state budget deal:
"While we are pleased to see that advocates were able to successfully push Governor Cuomo and state legislators to fund Census 2020 outreach in the state budget, the $20 million that they have allocated is woefully insufficient and just half of the $40 million needed. Even $40 million would have put New York far behind the $150 million California has invested in Census 2020.
Without the full $40 million for Census outreach, we fear that New York state will be undercounted, underfunded, and underrepresented for the next decade, threatening over $50 billion in federal money that would support healthcare, education, and social services, and ensuring the risk of losing Congressional seats at a time when every vote counts.
As the largest county in the state, Brooklyn is particularly important in determining the state’s success or failure in the Census. The insufficient funding in the budget is a significant setback for Brooklyn, which had the lowest mail return rate of any highly populated county in the United States in 2010.
With exactly one year to go until the launch of Census 2020, it is critical that the fully allocated $20 million is directed to local nonprofits, the most trusted messengers in our hard-to-count communities."