State Senator Bobby Powell on Tuesday commended Governor Ron DeSantis’ decision to adopt Democrats’ calls to participate in assisting the 2020 Census count, reversing his earlier rejection of Florida’s advocacy role.
“I have filed legislation for the past two years advocating for a Complete Count Committee, and although the Governor originally considered the Census a federal issue I am pleased that he has had a change of heart. I look forward to working with Lt. Governor Nunez and the U.S. Census Bureau to assist with implementing the strategic plan to ensure a complete count,” said Senator Powell (D-West Palm Beach). “Ensuring a complete and accurate count is vital to our economic growth as well as the redistricting process.”
In June of 2019 Senator Powell, and Senator Victor Torres (D-Orlando) sponsored legislation aimed at creating a Complete Count Committee, an effort that also garnered support from Senator Janet Cruz (D-Tampa), other Democratic senators including Minority Leader Audrey Gibson (D-Jacksonville), and House sponsor Representative Anika Omphroy (D-Lauderdale Lakes).
“I appreciate Governor DeSantis finally taking action to ensure Florida is prepared to handle the demands of our growing state. The work of Florida’s 2020 Census Statewide Complete Count Committee will be crucial in protecting the federal funding Florida relies on for infrastructure, education, and disaster relief. We cannot afford an inaccurate census count,” said Senator Cruz.
In a June 21, 2019 article by the Miami Herald regarding the Census Complete Count, Gov. DeSantis remarked, “The federal government does that. We don’t have a role in it. They administer it, and they should administer it how they see fit.”
Florida is one of the few states that had not set up a Complete Count Committee.