North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper is joining a bipartisan group of governors urging the U.S. Census Bureau to extend the census through the end of October. The request is being made to help ensure a complete count.

Cooper and seven other governors from Washington to Vermont are criticizing the decision to end the 2020 Census one month early. They say it jeopardizes a complete population count, and they suggest returning to the bureau's original October 31 deadline in order to meet its constitutional obligation without jeopardizing public health. 

The 2020 Census was delayed due to the pandemic, and with less than two months remaining, just 63 percent of the country has responded. Cooper says ending canvassing efforts early will add to the difficulty of getting an accurate count.

A potential undercount could put North Carolina at risk of losing more than $7 billion each year for health care, education, highways, and more over the next decade. Also at stake is representation in the U.S. House of Representatives.  

Cooper adds that North Carolinians most at risk of being undercounted live in rural counties which make up approximately 80 percent of the state.

For the most up-to-date information on coronavirus in North Carolina, visit our Live Updates blog here. WFDD wants to hear your stories — connect with us and let us know what you're experiencing.

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