U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross says the 2020 census will end Oct. 5, despite a federal judge’s ruling last week allowing the head count of every U.S. resident to continue through the end of October, according to a tweet posted on the Census Bureau’s website Monday.
The tweet said the ability for people to self-respond to the census questionnaire and the door-knocking phase when census takers go to homes that haven’t yet responded is targeted to end Oct. 5.
The announcement came as a virtual hearing was being held in San Jose, California, as a follow-up to U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh’s preliminary injunction. The injunction ordered last week suspended the Census Bureau’s deadline for ending the head count on Sept. 30, which automatically reverted the deadline back to an older Census Bureau plan in which the deadline for ending field operations was Oct. 31.
The new Oct. 5 deadline doesn’t necessarily violate the judge’s order because the injunction just suspended the Sept. 30 deadline for field operations, as well as a Dec. 31 deadline the Census Bureau has for turning in figures used for determining how many congressional seats each state gets in a process known as apportionment. The census also is used to determine how to distribute $1.5 trillion in federal spending annually.