12:57 – 25 people at this meeting…poor turnout…90% work for the Census Bureau…Sen. Carper not here…will it start on time?
1:04 – Sen. Carper doing introductions…he shook my hand and introduced himself earlier.
1:05 – Sen. Carper discussing stats about 1.4 million Americans working for Census Bureau (largest peacetime hiring effort)
1:06 - 6 million people missed in 2000 count. 1.3 million people counted twice.
1:07 – Hispanics miscounted 4 times as often as whites in 2000 says Carper
1:08 – Mayor Nutter going to speak…he’s in a rush and has to leave in 10 min.
1:10 – Michael Nutter says Philly will lose $2,300 per person not counted in 2010 Census
1:12 – Challenges for Philly: Locating households, encouraging people to return their forms…accurate address listings from US Postal service very important.
1:13 – Nutter: Master list doesn’t have 56,000 addresses that Philly City Gvnt reviewed and updated for Postal Service
1:15 – Nutter: Afro-Americans disproportionately represented in economically disadvantaged and Latinos in linguistically challenged areas
1:15 – Linguistic issues must be addressed by Census Bureau. INS and deportation issues must be addressed.
1:16 – improve response rate: 1. issue exec order 2. city-wide campaign 3. establish multicultural network
1:17 – Only through raising public consciousness that we can make this work – Nutter says his office will help out.
1:17 – Nutter leaves, Sen. Carper thanks Nutter
1:18- 3 minute video will be shown now…forgot my popcorn
1:19 – This is the same propaganda video stuff that’s available on YouTube on the Census Bureau’s channel…but informative!
1:21 – Still awake, still here…they’re playing sentimental “a photograph, a portrait of hopes and dreams” theme song…is Sen. Carper shedding a tear?
1:23 – De. Congressman Castle talking…discussing differences between allocating $ based on population rather than earmarks and pork legislation etc.
1:26 – Boring Del. Congressman Castle talking about why people don’t respond…this is called preaching to the choir, everyone here works for the Census Bureau
1:30 – Now Mayor Baker of Wilmington is speaking…making jokes, got no laughs
1:33 – 50% of Wilmington residents live in rented homes…this=bigger problems for counting.
1:34 – Mayor Baker thinks door to door messaging is important…like political campaigns.
1:36 – They make Joe Biden jokes about talking off the cuff…
1:37 – Baker says, “Who cares what Rush Limbaugh and FoxNews think” now that they’re in the minority…
1:38 – Baker makes more jokes and finishes his statement. Back to Sen. Carper…
1:39 – Philadelphia Managing Director Camille Cates Barnett is speaking…really sad story about her: http://www.kyw1060.com/pages/1430697.php?
1:40 – Barnett: Census data helps draw City Council districts…she cites 2007 Brookings study – $377 billion allocated based on 2010 Census
1:41 – Barnett: For every person we miss counting, $2,263 in funding lost…
1:44 – Barnett whips out 1 page strategic plan for Philly census…
1:45 – Add 75,000 residents in the next 5-10 years=Goal for City of Philly
1:46 – Since 2000 Philly has added 22,000 converted housing units…56,000 additional addressees have been handed over to Census Bureau from Philly.
1:48 – Economic downturn=people get displaced…complicates counting process.
1:49 – Only 23% of AfroAmerican Philadelphians have high school diplomas and 13% have college degrees.
1:52- Barnett repeats every single thing Mayor Nutter already said…eyelids shutting…
1:53 – Barnett finished with positive message…back to Sen. Tom Carper
1:55 – Carper asks Barnett what she learned from 1990 and 2000 Census.
1:56 – Barnett says major issue in previous Census operations=accurately ensuring population growth is properly recorded
1:59 – Congressman Castle talking about working with clergy…he references US Marshalls getting ministers to have criminals confess.
2:01 – Castle asks if clergy can be of help to get people out…Barnett talks about faith-based groups for outreach.
2:03 – Congressman Castle asks how landlords can help w/ Census. He admits he doesn’t know the legality of this.
2:05 – yadda yadda yadda – hopefully MyTwoCensus gets to ask some HARD-HITTING QUESTIONS. EVERYONE is falling asleep (woman next to me)
2:13- Carper’s aide just passed him a note…he’s now ending with Barnett and Baker…maybe abruptly ending mtg?
2:16 – New panel now on the Dais — Tom Mesoundbourg (acting Census Director) speaking…invoking founding fathers. Also on the Dais now: - Pat Coulter, Executive Director, Philadelphia Urban League
- Norman Bristol-Colon, Executive Director, Governor’s Advisory Commission on Latino Affairs, State of Pennsylvania
- Wanda M. Lopez, Executive Director, Governor’s Advisory Council on Hispanic Affairs, State of Delaware
2:20 – Mesounbourg LIES! he says operations are going smoothly and address canvassing in philly almost done! – (THE INSPECTOR GENERAL REPORT FROM MAY 09 DISAGREES) READ THE MOST RECENT UPDATE: http://www.oig.doc.gov/oig/reports/census_bureau/
2:25: Mesounbourg concludes “Our operations are not intended to count many of us, they are intended to count all of us.”
2:26 – Norman Bristol Colon now talking…he has a heavy Latino accent…hard to understand!
2:27 – More Puerto Ricans living in USA than in Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.
2:30 – Colon urges Census Bureau to have a plan to count undocumented and documented residents in the same way and counts EVERYONE.
2:31 – Colon insists that Census data remains private and is not released to the INS or other immigration officials.
2:33 – This is pretty much turning into a pro-immigration rally…Colon passionately speaking…only 20 people remain in the room here.
2:34 – Colon says that redistricting will help Latino populations so they can have more representation in gvnt.
2:36 – Colon finished speaking…now hearing from Pat Coulter, head of Urban League Philly – Urban League and Census Bureau have worked together since 1970.
2:37 – Coulter just quoted Dick Polman, my journalism Professor at Penn!
2:38 – Here’s the article Coulter quoted from: http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/americandebate/Head_counts_and_head_cases.html
2:42 – Coulter finished speaking, now last but not least, Wanda Lopez, Executive Director, Governor’s Advisory Council on Hispanic Affairs, State of Delaware
2:46 – Wanda Lopez is very well spoken, but unfortunately no new information added.
2:49 – Congressman Castle asking questions then “calling it a day” as Sen. Carper put it.
2:53 – Congressman Castle asks if celebrities can do public announcements to promote the Census…Director Mesenbourg says the Bureau is pursuing this.
2:54 – Mesenbourg says a PR firm has been hired to do this…which firm is this? Coulter mentions Oprah as possible spokeswoman.
2:55 – Wanda Lopez suggests using local radio in addition to ads on Univision.
2:56 – Castle thanks panel. Carper ending mtg. now…NO HARD-HITTING ISSUES ADDRESSED!
2:57 – Carper says President and First Lady and possibly Sasha and Malia could be used to promote 2010 Census…Wondering: Will they be counted in Chicago or DC?
2:58 – Carper acknowledges problems with handheld computers and asks Mesenbourg to weigh in on correction of problems.
2:59 – Mesenbourg: Handheld only used for address canvassing NOT the non-response follow-up operation in May 2010. Too risky to do that he says
3:01 – 8 million addresses given to Census Bureau from state/local gvnts says Mesenbourg
3:02 – “introduced risk mitigation strategies” – aka 5 different strategies to reduce risk for address canvassing…
3:03 – Mesenbourg says in this economy only 12% of hired applicants didnt show up once they were hired.
3:03 – This explains why we are so far aheadin our address canvassing operation…”highly skilled work force” enables us to finish operation earlier than planned.
3:04 – Carper addresses the Inspector General’s report from earlier to Mesenbourg about failures that we mentioned earlier (top article on http://www.oig.doc.gov/oig/reports/census_bureau/)
3:05 – Mesenbourg acknowledges that in 6 out of 15 locations that Inspector General visited, the Census Bureau employees were not following orders.
3:06 – Mesenbourg deflects the criticism that Carper addressed — saying that all employees received a text message on their handhelds to follow procedures more closely.
3:08 – Sen. Carper asks more hard-hitting questions (finally)! Impressed that he addressed these issues, though not satisfied w/ responses…
3:13 – Closing statements from Castle and Carper before they “call it a day.”
3:14 – Carper quotes Richard Nixon: “The only people who don’t make mistakes are the people who don’t do anything.”
3:15 – Carper says his office was originally worried about lack of technology used in this headcount, but his fears have now been alleviated.
3:17 – Carper thanks everyone who joined us and Census Bureau staff. Carper quotes Lamar Alexander “hearings should be called talkings.”