Wisconsin census map

A map of response rates in Wisconsin for the 2020 Census.

The 2020 Census is still taking place, and Veronans are taking part in high numbers.

That is evidenced in how 83% of Verona residents had responded to the 2020 Census as of Monday, Aug. 3, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Efforts to collect the remaining answers are expected to start Aug. 11 and go through Sept. 30.

The Verona statistic is comparable to a response rate of 74% in Fitchburg, 72.4% in Madison, 79.9% in Middleton, 80% in Stoughton and 84.1% in Oregon. Dane County had an overall rate of 75.3%, as compared to the statewide rate of 69.4%. In 2010, when the last census took place, Verona’s rate was 87%.

The City of Verona has expanded efforts to increase census response rates such as placing reminder labels on all of the absentee ballots that were requested for the April election. For example, the Verona Public Library created coloring pages, the Verona Senior Center placed reminder notes in food bags and the Verona Area Chamber of Commerce sent a mass email to remind employees to fill out the census, Katherine Holt, community development specialist for the city wrote to the Press in an email.

The census is collected every 10 years with the goal of counting everyone who lives in the United States. The information collected by the census is used to redraw legislative districts based on population and determine the number of seats each state holds in the House of Representatives.

It informs how billions of dollars in federal funds will be allocated by state, local and federal lawmakers annually and influences programs including highway planning, grants for buses, Head Start programs and planning and funding for Medicaid, according to the bureau’s website.

Census takers are hired from local communities and are expected to wear masks while collecting, the website states.

Anyone who has not responded yet can visit my2020census.gov to complete forms online, call (844) 330-2020 or complete and return forms sent through the mail.

— Renee Hickman’s reporting contributed to this story.