ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The U.S. Census Bureau sped up the timetable for crunching 2020 census numbers on Friday after an earlier request for an extension stalled in the Senate and as pressure mounts to turn in data used to determine congressional districts by year’s end, when President Donald Trump is still in office.
On its website Friday, the bureau listed the deadline for processing data used to apportion the districts as Dec. 31. As recently as Thursday, it had listed a time frame of Oct. 31, 2020 to April 30, 2021 — an estimate based on a request for an extension that it submitted to Congress in April.
Census experts and civil rights activists worry the sped-up deadline could affect the thoroughness of the count, which determines how $1.5 trillion in federal spending is distributed and how many congressional districts each state gets.
“The rapidly changing census schedule is