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Census Bureau Still Hiring Before Constitutional Head Count

Bill Rinehart
Tyla Ward, partnership specialist with the Census Bureau speaks Friday morning at a kickoff press conference.

Hiring is underway for this year's census and local leaders say the work could lead to more jobs and additional federal spending down the road. Cincinnati's mayor and the Hamilton County commission president are touting the 2020 Census, hoping to get 100% participation.

But before the counting begins on April 1, the Census Bureau needs to hire workers.

"Recruiting is our number one mission," Assistant Regional Census Manager Roxanne Wallace says. "In order to get an accurate count, in order to have people represent the communities within Hamilton County and Cincinnati, we are looking to target recruit at this point." Wallace says recruiting ends March 2.

Hamilton County Commission President Denise Driehaus says census results help determine federal spending and points out that it's a "huge amount" of money.

"We just need our fair share coming to Hamilton County and to the city of Cincinnati for the people who live in this region to make sure that we are providing the services that we get from the federal government through these dollars," Driehaus says.

State Senator Cecil Thomas says census results affect more than just government funding decisions. "Businesses look for numbers when they decide where they want to build factories and things of that nature. So, when we talk about this region, we want to make sure we count as many individuals as possible because now you're talking about jobs."

Officials say the Census Bureau is hiring enumerators, with pay ranging from $21 to $23.50 an hour.

Bill Rinehart started his radio career as a disc jockey in 1990. In 1994, he made the jump into journalism and has been reporting and delivering news on the radio ever since.