By Jessica Mathews /

2020 Census efforts are wrapping up across Livingston County and the country.

Handy Township Supervisor Ed Alverson served as the coordinator for Conway, Handy and Iosco Townships as well as the Village of Fowlerville for the 2020 Census. He says they’ve wrapped up committee efforts, although enumerators will be going door-to-door to make contact with those who did not self-respond. People can still go online at and self-respond. However, Alverson noted the numbers really haven’t budged in three weeks and most people who are going to respond have already done so. He says they started hard in February because the Michigan Township Association was concerned there would be a lack of response this year so the four units of government worked together and had a lot of help from the community. Overall, Alverson tells WHMI each unit of government increased their self-response rate from 2010 and Livingston County remains #1 in the state as for people replying to the Census, with an 80.1% response rate.

Having a good response rate determines funding for communities over the next ten years. Alverson said when he came back to township government in 2015, it became evident how important state shared revenue is to Handy Township and other units of government. In Handy Township, Alverson says it accounts for more than half the budget so they wanted to make a good effort. He said Conway and Iosco Township and the Village of Fowlerville all felt the same and overall, they’re very pleased with the results.

Alverson commented one thing they didn’t know going in was that the Census Bureau doesn’t mail to Post Office boxes. For places like the Village of Fowlerville, Howell and Brighton, he says it really hurt because people didn’t get notified until much later. Alverson said the County Census Committee did mail out to those individuals but not until later and that was one of the glitches they noticed. Further, he said some older residents were waiting for a written census questionnaire, which isn’t done anymore. When looking at eastern Livingston County where the Internet is more prevalent, Alverson noted there was an outstanding response and some communities had a 90% response rate.

For the next Census in 2030, Alverson said he would like to see more of a county-wide strategy where all of the townships are working together with cities and villages on communicating at the same time. Oddly enough, he said COVID-19 probably helped because people who were home took the time to respond. Alverson said they had great community response as well as assistance from the Fowlerville Area Fire Authority and Fowlerville Community Schools, noting the High School Interact Club went door-to-door in the Red Cedar development and in a mobile home park. Again when looking ahead to the 2030 Census and what the technology will be, Alverson said it will be exciting to see what happens.