About 1.4 million Alabama households have turned in their 2020 census forms, a state self-response rate of 56.7% compared to a national rate of 58.6%, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
State agencies are now putting extra effort in those parts of the state where responses are lagging. A swath of Black Belt and southern counties, and a few in north Alabama, are trailing in mail-in, internet and telephone replies, according to a map maintained by the Census Bureau. Early this week, Coosa County in central Alabama had the lowest return rate at 26.6%. The response rate data is based on 2018 and 2019 population estimates.
Census kickoff efforts in March and April got off to a slow start because of the coronavirus. Read more and see interactive map.
A census reminder might not be the most memorable part of an inaugural speech. But that didn’t stop Gov. Kay Ivey from mentioning next year’s decennial count in her address in January. Leaders in Alabama say the 2020 Census is especially important for the state.
It’s for two main reasons. First, billions of federal dollars a year are divvied up based on census numbers. Secondly, Alabama could lose a congressional seat. That’s because the state’s population hasn’t been growing as quickly as other states.
Meanwhile, Alabama has been a historically difficult state to count. Read more.