The biggest change to Trump's administration you haven't heard of yet

The departure of the Census Department chief could lead to major confusion and big problems.

ST. PETERSBURG  —  President Trump kicked FBI Director James Comey to the curb three days ago, and it's dominated headlines ever since.

But there's another Trump administration change that could have a huge impact on nearly every aspect of government and your daily life.

The head of the Census Bureau is resigning, and it’s a way bigger deal than you might think.

The census is vital to the roads you drive on, the schools your kids go to, where you vote, how much money your town gets from the feds, and it's mandated by the Constitution.

“The census is the base mark that we use when projecting forward,” Brian Caper said. He's an economic development analyst for the city of St. Petersburg.

He said St. Pete and all municipal, state, and even the federal government, use the census for basically everything.

“It's also used heavily in transportation. What roads need funding? And in what time frame to they need it?Everything from redistricting to looking at police districts to make sure there's an even population.Where your water, what area it should come from. Where your sewage, where it needs to go in order to keep at capacity and not have any overflow situations where it's not able to handle that growth. Even school districting. Where they're determining where new schools will be,” Caper said.

So even if you don't think it, the census touches every part of your life.

John Thompson, the head of the Census Bureau, just announced he's retiring with only three years 'till 2020, and a heck of a lot more work to do.

That adds a whole new layer to an already frustrating situation for the Census Bureau.

2010's census was the priciest ever coming in at $13 billion.

And just in January, the 2020 census was added to the a list of high risk projects, meaning the Government Accountability Office is worried it might not be able to complete its task.

Take that with the already difficult task facing census takers --- actually getting the right info from the people they need to  --- and you have recipe for the problem.

© 2017 WTSP-TV


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