With everything going on right now, I wanted to talk to you about an important piece of mail you received recently or had left at your door recently — your Census ID.

Here's what it likely looked like:

The Constitution mandates the nation hold a Census every 10 years and the information is used for tons of things, including local funding for several programs. Winnebago County has missed out on an estimated $900 million over 10 years in federal funding due to an estimate of nearly 60,000 persons not counted in Winnebago County in the 2010 Census, officials say.

Let's make sure that doesn't happen with the 2020 Census. The information collected cannot be used against you in legal proceedings and it can be collected online, via phone or via email. To respond via email, just go to my2020census.gov and enter the Census ID in the letter shown above. (If you can't find your Census ID, there is an alternative process available at my2020census.gov/login.)

The goal is to have as many people as possible respond by April 1, although officials will follow up with those who haven't responded.

Video and printed guides are available online in 59 languages, as ASL and Braille, while you can answer the Census over the phone in 13 languages and mailed questionnaires are available in Spanish and English.

Here's a video with a bit more of an explanation:

So much rides on you getting this done; please don't blow this off. You have a few ways to do it and it will take you less time than it took the barista to make that delicious thing you're sipping on right now. Filling out the Census can be done while you're parked in line at the drive-through, or if you're home with your kids right now, it's an easy civics lesson you can do together.

Complete the Census, be counted, and help your community in a bunch of ways you can't even imagine.