Contract approved for Nevada census outreach

The state Board of Examiners approved an $886,000 contract Friday for a public outreach and marketing campaign encouraging Nevadans to participate in the 2010 census.

"We estimate the state would lose $917 for every man, woman and child missed, so people in this state have every reason to respond when asked to be counted," Secretary of State Ross Miller said.

The Board of Examiners, comprised of Miller, Gov. Jim Gibbons and Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto, awarded the contract to Weber Shandwick, a public relations firm headquartered in New York. Weber Shandwick will subcontract with Nevada-based The Ferraro Group.

In 1990, Miller said Nevada's response rate was among the worst in the nation and cost the state tens of millions of dollars in federal funds as a consequence.

Ten years later, the state ranked "most improved" in its response rate following its first campaign stressing the importance of the census, he said.

Information collected by the U.S. Census Bureau helps determine how more than $400 billion of federal funding is spent each year on infrastructure, transportation projects and services.

Census results also determine how many seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives and the number of electoral votes in presidential elections.


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