North Lufkin working to ensure every resident is counted

By Holley Nees - bio | email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) – It only comes around once a decade bringing with it job opportunities and the chance for your city to get money. The U.S. Census is here, and one group of East Texans believe it's so important, they've formed a group to help one area of Lufkin learn more about it.

Last decade only 30 percent of the people in North Lufkin were counted and some are ready to change that.

"It's important, it provides services and support, helps our schools, helps our roads, helps our environment," explained Chairperson for Everyone Counts Committee Guessippina Bonner.  "Everything we do that depends on government money, that money is given based on the number of people who reside in a geographic area."

Although Bonner is not employed by the Census, she said she's ready to count everyone who resides in this area.

"We're not saying how many people are citizens, we're saying how many people, on a given day, breathe the air in Angelina County and we want to count them," said Bonner.

People in North Lufkin, can get paid to help count their area for the Census.

"You have a lot of people that are out of jobs right now, that are looking for jobs and that would be a great opportunity," said Lufkin City Councilman for Ward 2 Robert Shankle.

Shankle lives in North Lufkin and said even if it's a temporary job, it's a chance for people like Diana Bucio.

"Right now I'm looking for a part time job so I can continue with my studies and also be a part of my families life," said Bucio.

"I need the money to help my family out and make sure my little girl's straight," said Eric Arnett.

"The economy is so bad now, what would be good about it is anything you doing is better than nothing at all," said Robert Dade.

Bonner agrees, in Census jobs, it pays to count.

"$13 an hour, 50 cents a mile, if you're traveling for the Census. In today's economy who can turn that down," said Bonner.

"There's always hope, there's always somewhere, somebody who will give you a chance," encouraged Shankle.

This decade, it's the census ready to give this area a chance to count and be counted.

The North Lufkin group is going to have a tutorial night for Census training on Dec. 10. It starts at 6:30 p.m. at the Collins Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church on the corner of Rowe Ave. and Culverhouse St. They will review applications and practice tests.

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