Stow Mayor John Pribonic and Cuyahoga Falls Mayor Don Walters have challenged each other to a friendly competition to urge their respective citizens to respond to the 2020 Census. The city that has the highest census response rate by Oct. 31 will be declared the winner. The mayor with the lowest response rate will buy lunch for the mayor of the city with the highest response rate while wearing that city’s baseball hat.

Each month leading up, the mayor of the city with the lowest response rate will wear a baseball hat from the winning city to the next virtual city council meeting.

"Every year, billions of dollars in federal funding go to our healthcare facilities, safety forces, schools, and infrastructure. We are currently witnessing the importance of federal funding as continue to navigate the ongoing situation with the COVID-19 pandemic," stated Walters. "This friendly competition is an effort to remind our residents of the importance of responding to the Census and it has never been easier to respond."

"I encourage all of Stow’s residents to respond to the 2020 Census, not just because it is the law but because it is of great benefit to all of us. Plus, we don’t want to lose to Cuyahoga Falls!" said Pribonic. "The Census Bureau uses our responses to produce statistics that determines how federal funds are dispersed. To maximize our funding, we need to maximize our responses. If you are concerned about completing the census or have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to city officials. We’re happy to help in any way we can."

The census is mandated by the Constitution and everyone living in the United States and its five territories is required by law to be counted in the 2020 Census. Residents are reminded that all 2020 Census responses are kept confidential and private. By law, responses cannot be shared. Every year, billions of dollars in federal funding go to hospitals, fire departments, schools, roads, and other resources based on census data.

Residents may respond to the Census by mail, phone at 844-330-2020, or by visiting 2020census.gov.