As we ponder important choices this election year, we are also faced with another important responsibility as citizens: being counted.

Our schools and municipal governments are funded by not only a variety of local taxes, but also from monies from the state and federal government based on our population and need. An accurate count of the population in our city, county and state can make a huge difference in terms of the programs and funding that we are eligible to receive. As elected officials and stewards of the community, it is our responsibility to make certain that we take advantage of the opportunities and grants offered by the state and federal government. You can help us attain that goal by being counted in a timely fashion.

According to the 2010 Census, the cities of Avon Lake and Avon each have an estimated population of fewer than 25,000. A count of 25,000 or more would allow both communities access to additional funding not available to smaller municipalities. While we expect the population of both communities to surpass that magic threshold, we need your help to assure that will happen.

The U.S. Census Bureau says, “Beginning in mid-March, the U.S. Census Bureau will invite households across the country to participate in the 2020 Census. The 2020 Census counts every person living in the United States, as of April 1. The count is mandated by the Constitution every ten years, and the results help to shape your future in a variety of ways – from determining the number of seats each state gets in the House of Representatives to informing decisions about how hundreds of billions of dollars are allocated each year to local communities for vital services like school, healthcare, roads and bridges, and emergency response.”

Responding is easy: online, by phone or by mail. On average, the process should take less than 10 minutes. If a household does not respond, census takers will begin visiting homes in May and will continue to do so through July. It is important that the U.S. Census get an accurate count of every person – both citizens and noncitizens living in the United States. The results will affect our community for years to come.

Can we count on you to BE COUNTED?

Gregory J. Zilka

Mayor, City of Avon Lake

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