Hey, guys! You might have heard me talk about before about how important it is to complete the Census, and I'm still talking about it — because we still have people in our area who haven't taken the questionnaire.

If you think the Census doesn't affect you or you're family, you're not looking far enough. Not only do the numbers affect our representation in the U.S. House of Representatives, and local and state government, but it also affects local funding for things like Medicaid, foster care, Pell Grants, SNAP, highway and construction funding, Section 8 housing and free and reduced lunch and breakfast programs in schools.

Plus, businesses, local governments/policymakers, and real estate developers all use Census data to make decisions which impact our community.

When you put it in cold, hard dollars, every county in Illinois stands to lose about $1,535 per person, per year, for every person who does not participate in the 2020 Census.

My family doesn't use all of those programs, but I want my two young children to go to the best schools possible, and I definitely don't want the schools to miss out on funding. I want my kids to have every advantage I am capable of giving them, and if taking a few minutes to fill out a census questionnaire helps them receive a more quality education, give me a pen!

I've filled out the Census, and there's still time for you to do so, too, if you haven't. Just go to my2020census.gov to get started. It only takes about 10 minutes!