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New Imitation Census Survey Reaches Montana Residents

Reminder: Official U.S. Census Bureau surveys don’t cost money to complete, are not mailed by political groups

Friday, September 27, 2019/Categories: Market MT

Imitation Census Mailer

Montana’s Census and Economic Information Center at the Department of Commerce is reminding Montanans that official U.S. Census Bureau surveys will never ask respondents for money, and those surveys will always be postmarked from the U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Census Bureau.

This reminder comes on the heels of a Census look-a-like survey being mailed to Montana residents in Gallatin County. The survey is called the “2019 Congressional District Census” and was mailed by the Republican National Committee. In addition, it asks respondents to pay, at minimum, $15 for processing the “Census Document.” In May, a nearly identical Census look-a-like mailer was sent to people in Lewis and Clark, Jefferson and Missoula counties.

Montana’s Census 2020 Complete Count Committees are ramping up outreach efforts ahead of the official decennial Census, which begins in March 2020. Lieutenant Governor Mike Cooney is Montana’s Complete Count Committee chairman.

“Montanans need accurate information about the Census to make sure we have a complete count of the folks who live here. A complete count means the state will get its fair share of federal funding,” Lt. Gov. Cooney said. “The official Census is easy to complete, secure, and does not cost money. An accurate and complete Census count for Montana is too important to take lightly.”

Congress has taken steps to prevent Census look-a-like mailings. For example, in 2010, the Prevent Deceptive Census Look Alike Mailings Act became law.

Counting everyone in Montana is critical because it determines the state’s share of federal funding for the next decade, and it determines whether Montana will get another representative in Congress.

It’s estimated Montana receives $2 billion in federal funds each year as a result of the official Census. For every Montana resident counted, the Census estimates the state will receive almost $2,000 each year for ten years. That is $20,000 per person over the decade flowing across Montana counties for highway planning, medical assistance, educational programs, and infrastructure.

Click here and here to see PDFs of the mailer sent to a voter in Gallatin County.

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DIRECTOR'S OFFICE | MONTANA DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
301 S. PARK AVE. | PO BOX 200501 | HELENA, MT 59620-0501 | P: 406.841.2700 | F: 406.841.2701 | TDD: 406.841.2702