Gila Valley improves on past Census response, still time to be counted for 2020

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THATCHER — With just a few days left to participate in the U.S. Census, the Gila Valley Census coordinator said while the local communities have done well so far, there’s still more to do.

During an appearance on Kat Kountry radio, Ashley Smith said Graham County’s 56 percent self-response rate is about 11 points better than 2010, Thatcher’s 65.9 percent is 20.9 points ahead of where the community was 10 years ago and Safford at 65.2 percent is about 4.2 points better than the last Census.

Meanwhile Pima is leading the way in bettering its self-response from 2010, going from 18 percent 10 years ago to 49.1 percent as of Friday, a 31.1 point improvement.

Pima town officials are using the last few days to get a better response from minority and low-income residents.

Smith said each person included in the Census is worth about $30,000 each to a community.

“It’s pretty much anything we get funding from the state or from the federal government. So we’re talking roads, schools, health care, our first responders, parks, libraries, everything,” Smith said.

The deadline to respond to the Census is Sept. 30. Go to