By Will Johnson
HOUSTON COUNTY – Everybody loves a parade. Even the folks in charge of making sure everyone gets counted during the 2020 US Census.
On Friday afternoon, June 12, area first responders and local leaders gathered in the Eastgate Plaza shopping center in Crockett to start a parade in order to raise awareness about the importance of the US Census.
Why, you may ask? According to the US Census Bureau, there are several reasons to make sure you get counted.
“The 2020 Census will provide a snapshot of our nation—who we are, where we live, and so much more. The results of this once-a-decade count determine the number of seats each state has in the House of Representatives. They are also used to draw congressional and state legislative districts,” the Bureau’s website stated.
“Over the next decade,” the website continued, “lawmakers, business owners, and many others will use 2020 Census data to make critical decisions. The results will show where communities need new schools, new clinics, new roads, and more services for families, older adults, and children. The results will also inform how hundreds of billions of dollars in federal funding are allocated to more than 100 programs, including Medicaid, Head Start, block grants for community mental health services, and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, also known as SNAP.”
As the sirens and horns roared to life just after 1 pm, the first responder vehicles left the plaza parking lot and turned left on Houston Ave. and then meandered towards downtown Crockett.
The vehicles traveled around the square and then headed off towards Lovelady. From there, the parade worked its way through Kennard and then back to Crockett. Once back in Crockett, the vehicles headed north, passing through Latexo and then on towards Grapeland.
The latest update on the 2020 Census shows the US has a self-response rate of 60.7 percent while Texas has a rate of 55.5.
Locally, DETCOG is in charge of the census count for its 12 county region. Angelina County leads the area with a 52.4 self-response rate. In 2010, the final self-response rate for Angelina County was 64.7 percent.
Nacogdoches County is next with 48.5 percent compared to a 60 percent rate in 2010. Shelby County follows with a 41.5 self-response rate, compared to 52.2 percent in 2010. Houston County sits in fourth place with a 40.3 percent self-response rate so far in 2020, compared to 53.3 percent in 2010.
The other counties in the DETCOG region are as follows:
- San Jacinto County – 38.9 percent in 2020; 48.9 percent in 2010.
- Polk County – 37.7 percent in 2020; 46.9 percent in 2010.
- Jasper County – 36.3 percent in 2020; 52.3 percent in 2010.
- Trinity County – 30.9 percent in 2020; 46.2 percent in 2010.
- Tyler County – 29.6 percent in 2020; 29.6 percent in 2010.
- Newton County – 28.6 percent in 2020; 46.2 percent in 2010.
- Sabine County – 23.9 percent in 2020; 39.1 percent in 2010.
- San Augustine County – 23.8 percent in 2020; 44.7 percent in 2010.
Will Johnson may be contacted via e-mail at email@example.com.