​HOPKINSVILLE, KY. - The U.S. Census Bureau finalized a rule change proposed for the 2020 census that would impact our region. The updated policy would require the Census Bureau to count all deployed service members at the base or port in which they resided prior to deployment instead of by their home of record, an address they gave when they enlisted.
The Bureau’s previous method resulted in 2010 census data that improperly represented areas including Fort Campbell, Kentucky. While the region around Fort Campbell had grown greatly since the 2000 census, the 2010 census did not accurately reflect this growth due to the Bureau’s policy on counting deployed service members.
The Christian County Chamber of Commerce has been advocating for this change for several years and it has been a priority for the Chamber’s Military Affairs Program. "Today's announcement is a victory for our region and our state,” said Kelli Pendleton, President and CEO of Kentucky’s Christian County Chamber of Commerce. “To have our soldiers counted at the installation where they are stationed during a deployment has a large economic impact on our region. This is an effort we have worked tirelessly on for several years, and we are thrilled with today's decision. We are grateful to have legislators who listen to our concerns and really work to address these types of issues.
“Kentucky is proud of our service members and their families, and I applaud the Census Bureau for following through on a change that will ensure our military communities are properly represented and have the resources they need to continue supporting our military. Every service member deserves to be counted, and today’s action proves concerned citizens can make a difference,” said U.S. Senator Rand Paul. After hearing from local officials and community leaders about the inaccurate reporting, Dr. Paul worked to enact change, including contacting the Bureau directly and introducing the “Service Members and Communities Count Act” to ensure the correct reporting of all deployed service members.
“We are excited that the Census Bureau has decided to count military personnel where they live prior to deployment,” said Hopkinsville, Kentucky, Mayor Carter Hendricks. “This simple change ensures military families are counted in the communities, like Hopkinsville, that work tirelessly to support soldiers and their families.
The final rule creates one consistent and logical method for counting service members overseas. Until now, the method for counting service members during a deployment varied between branches of service.

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