Half of Utah residents have yet to complete census

(Paul Sancya | AP file photo) An envelope containing a 2020 census letter is shown on April 5, 2020. Starting Wednesday, the U.S. Census Bureau is mailing out millions of paper forms to homes whose residents haven’t yet answered the once-a-decade questionnaire.

Utah ranks No. 6 nationally for response to the 2020 census so far — but still about half of its residents have not responded to letters inviting them to complete it online or by phone.

So, the U.S. Census Bureau started mailing paper forms on Wednesday to households that have yet to respond.

“If you’re among the nearly half of all the nation’s households that have responded already, thank you!” said Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham.

“It has never been easier to respond on your own, whether online at 2020census.gov, over the phone, or by mail — all without having to meet a census taker,” he said. “It’s something everyone can do while practicing social distancing at home to make a difference today, tomorrow and the next 10 years.”

As of Tuesday, 51.5% of Utah households have responded to the survey, compared to a national average of 46.2%.

Five states have higher response rates so far: Minnesota (55.7%), Wisconsin (53.4%) Michigan (52.9%), Virginia (52.1%), Iowa (51.8%) and Nebraska (51.7%).

Among Utah’s counties, Davis and Morgan tied for the highest response rate so far at 63.1%.

The rates in other Wasatch Front counties were: Salt Lake County (54.9%), Utah (57%) and Weber (52.4%).

The lowest response rate among Utah’s counties were 1.2% in Rich and 2.8% in Garfield. In rural counties where residents often use post office boxes for addresses, invitations were supposed to be delivered in person. However, the Census Bureau suspended such field operations because of the COVID-19 epidemic.