ANNAPOLIS — With the 2020 census only 238 days away, the Maryland Complete Count Committee on Tuesday held its fifth meeting in Crownsville as the state continues preparations for the decennial census.

The committee includes nonprofit leaders, elected officials, state agency heads and county and municipal government representatives.

The 2020 decennial census is required by law to count every person in the United States. Census information is used to distribute billions in federal funds for programs and services, reapportionment for Congress and local legislative districts, and for important local economic development and planning decisions. The census is confidential and protected by federal law.

Census Day is April 1, 2020 — the date where every person living in the U.S. is asked to fill out and submit their census forms by mail and for the first time ever, online or by phone.

Gov. Larry Hogan signed an executive order in February directing the Maryland CCC to assist the state in achieving a full and accurate count. The CCC is developing and implementing an engagement and outreach plan to build partnerships and coordinate with local governments and other organizations throughout Maryland.

The U.S. Census Bureau urges the formation of CCCs at the state, jurisdictional and municipal level to organize census efforts. To date, every county has formed a CCC.

For every Marylander uncounted, it is estimated to cost the state more than $18,250 per person in unaccessed federal funds, which provide critical funding for programs.

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