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Key to the Future Challenge to Reward Cities, Counties for 2020 Census Response Rate

Key to the Future Challenge

June 9, 2020

Iowa has recently become one of the leading states in 2020 Census responses. This is exciting news for the state as we begin to look at what it will take to continue to create economic development, as well as move forward from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and bring Iowans together to create what the state will look like over the course of the next decade.

In an effort to continue to boost 2020 Census responses, the Key to the Future Response Rate Challenge has launched through the State of Iowa’s 2020 U.S. Census Complete Count Committee. All of Iowa’s 928 cities and 99 counties are asked to participate in the challenge and are urged to do what they can to lift Iowa to number one in response rates. Currently, Iowa is third, just behind Minnesota and Wisconsin, with a 66.9% response rate, or around 990,000 households responding.

Distribution of Funds

By participating in the 2020 Census, you are helping to shape Iowa’s future by providing data that will be used to inform decision-making on everything from federal funds for transportation infrastructure to school lunch programs and disaster recovery initiatives. Planning for needed programs and services relies on the information obtained through the Census and will impact our state for the foreseeable future.

Find out more about what to expect from the Census here.

How to Participate in the Key to the Future Challenge

Cities and counties can encourage households to respond in one of three ways:

Earn Recognition for Your City/County

Iowa cities and counties who are first in their tier to meet their Key to the Future Challenge goal will also be recognized with Key to the Future plaques and be recognized in news and social media announcements. Tiers are separated into four categories: Cities < 5,000; Cities 5,000-50,000; Cities > 50,000; and all Counties.

Goals for Different Tiers

The following tiers must reach the response rates given to receive recognition:

  • Tier 1 Cities: Populations up to 5,000 – to reach 100% count of households
  • Tier 2 Cities: Populations 5,001 to 50,000 – reach 2010 response rates PLUS 10%
  • Tier 3 Cities: Populations 50,001 and larger – reach 2010 response rates PLUS 10%
  • Iowa counties: Reach 2010 response rates PLUS 5%

Learn more about the Key to the Future Response Rate Challenge.

The Greater Des Moines Partnership is the economic and community development organization that serves Greater Des Moines (DSM), Iowa. Together with 24 Affiliate Chambers of Commerce, more than 6,500 Regional Business Members and more than 365 Investors, The Partnership drives economic growth with one voice, one mission and as one region. Through innovation, strategic planning and global collaboration, The Partnership grows opportunity, helps create jobs and promotes DSM as the best place to build a business, a career and a future. Learn more at DSMpartnership.com.