Pioneer Valley Complete Count Committee - September Meeting Notes

26 Sep 2019

Pioneer Valley Complete Count Committee - September Meeting Notes

Tuesday - September 17, 2019

Pioneer Valley Planning Commission

60 Congress Street, Springfield

Present: Pat Beaudry, Molly Goren-Watts, Malcom Ragen, Lori Tanner, PVPC; Marie Waechter, WGBY; Brianna Sunryd and Athena O’Keeffe, Town of Amherst; Geoffrey Naunheim, United Way of Hampshire County; Michael Moriarty, OneHolyoke CDC; James Thompson, City of Northampton; William Palmer, John Barr, Lida Harkins, Uri Molina, Secretary of the Commonwealth; Susan Hagen, US Census Bureau; Nicole Young, United Way of Hampden County; Elvis Mendez, Neighbor to Neighbor; Kareem Kibodya, Congressman Richard Neal’s Office; Paul Robbins, Paul Robbins Associates; Gerry McCafferty, Springfield Housing; Melissa White, Valley Opportunity Council; Sara Bedford, Jewish Family Services of Western Mass

Note Taker: Pat Beaudry

10:00-10:15 Introductions and Background

Pat welcomes group and explains the role of a regional complete count committee (CCC) - primarily serving as a conduit between the Statewide Complete Count Committee chaired by the Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition (MIRA) and the local complete count committees currently being formed up by municipalities. PVCC will, through Pat Beaudry, bring questions, comments and concerns to the Statewide CCC, and likewise communicate what activities, approaches, collateral and other resources are being developed and made available at that statewide level.

The intention is between the statewide and regional CCC’s best practices and materials will be created that local CCC’s will be able to simply take and run with in their respective communities.

Susan Hagen and John Barr provide contrast from 2010 Census on which both worked. Differences from last decennial census include fear of government due to political climate by undocumented residents and those living in illegal housing situations, more difficult recruitment for Census positions because of low unemployment, and 2020 being the first year residents will be invited to self respond online.

Molly Goren-Watts noted that a MA Census Equity Fund grant from their first round made our convening the PV CCC possible, as well as our ability to bring on Paul Robbins of Paul Robbins Associates to facilitate the meeting’s discussion about barriers for hard to count communities (College students, Low-Income and Homeless residents, New Americans and English as a Second Language residents, Rural residents, among others), which will guide the development of a strategic outreach plan for the PV CCC, which will include assessing organizations’ engagement assets and determine best practice tactics for these communities.

Uri Molina gave an overview of the Statewide Complete Count Committee’s work including working with MIRA, the MA Council of Churches, MA Library Association, as examples of statewide groups being tapped to develop statewide strategies regional and local CCC’s can deploy in their own communities.

Lida Harkins expanded on her outreach to ‘Snow Birds’ as part of Secretary Galvin’s team’s work to make sure seniors who spend the winter months away are aware of the importance of their being counted where they spend most of their year.


10:15-11:45 Facilitated Discussion on Strategic Outreach Plan   

  • Barriers to reaching hard to count populations
  • Organizational assets

Paul Robbins kicks off facilitated discussion by saying the key to a successful complete count effort will be identifying the barriers to participation for hard to count populations, what messages will motivate, resonate, and/or ease those residents concerns, as well as recruiting trusted messengers within those respective communities to deliver them.


Sara Bedford, New Americans Program Director at Jewish Family Services of Western Mass notes fear of government, language and technology barriers will impact immigrant and refugees’ participation levels if left unaddressed.

Gerry McCafferty speaking to her expertise in homelessness work said she has a lot of questions regarding this unique population including how will people without mailing addresses receive the mid-March postcard inviting them to self report, where do they self report themselves if they are couch surfing or living in an encampment with no formal address, and how do we communicate the safety of reporting more people at a household than is legally allowed.

Brianna Sunyrd is still seeking clarification on how college students are counted on campus, but shares concerns about off campus participation due to the frequency of illegal housing situations many students live in.

Additionally, the group at large felt a fundamental lack of understanding what the census is and why it matters could negatively impact participation rates if left unaddressed.



Marie Waechter noted that in 2010 she thought it was impactful to have PV CCC members secure opportunities to address groups during their meetings rather than trying to create develop PV CCC events, because that invitation to speak suggested the organizers trusted that speaker.

Elvis said Neighbor to Neighbor has had some success engaging families through schools. Paul Robbins noted he’s done quite a bit of that type of outreach via a different client and said schools’ text messaging systems could boost communication if we are able to secure school departments’ support.

Melissa White suggests PV CCC members consider setting up computer banks where folks can come in and complete their census with assistance from trained helpers if necessary. Lida noted many students have community service hours requirements and might be able to help with those efforts.

John Barr notes that Census job fairs are a great first touch on community organizations because you are offering a resource before asking for help. It also helps ensure solid local people are hired who can use their standing within their given community to do the best possible job getting everyone counted.

Mike Moriarty said his public engagement team at OneHolyoke CDC will be working hard to engage the lowest participation census tracts in Holyoke from the 2010 Census, but also wants to make sure local residents are hired for Census jobs and needs clarification from Susan on how those hired will be deployed to ensure they actually stay working in the communities from which they’re hired.

Uri says many CCC include local chambers and other professional associations who can incorporate and disseminate PV CCC messaging to their customers and memberships.

Melissa added to Uri’s comments by suggesting the PVTA, WIC and other service providers be brought into the group.


Who’s Missing

The group briefly discussed who was missing from today’s meeting. Those mentioned included: more municipal officials, faith based groups like Interfaith Council of Greater Springfield and the Pastors Council, rural-centric groups like Hilltown CDC and Gateway Hilltowns Collaborative, the Coalition to End Hunger, Springfield Partners for Community Action, Quabog Hill Community Coalition, Hospitals and Medical Providers at large - especially Ann Marie Golden, New England Farm Workers, Holyoke Safe Neighborhood Assoc., and Community Television

Pat noted that while anyone who wants to participate in the PV CCC in welcomed, some of those named as missing links may make more sense participating in their local CCC’s rather than the regional, though their insights can certainly help inform region-wide approaches and strategies.


Important Clarification

While postcards sent out in mid-March inviting households to self-report online or by phone will include a PIN they can enter to streamline the Census completion process, it is NOT required to complete the Census. The Census will be available in 12 languages online and by phone and MIRA is working on recruiting translators of languages represented in MA not included in that 12 to facilitate completion.


11:45-11:55 Grant Funding Options

  • Mass Equity Fund - Deadline October 25th  
  • Secretary Galvin’s Office - TBD

Molly suggests any organization interested in applying to the MA Census Equity Fund’s second round of grant funding check in with her so we can potentially coordinate larger regional bids. Nonprofits are eligible for engagement work through this philanthropic fund. 

Uri and John noted Secretary Galvin’s office is developing an RFP to distribute the $2.5mm allocated in the FY’2020 state budget and will be released in the next few months.


11:55-12:00 Wrap Up and Next Steps

Elvis shared that tomorrow (9/18) there will be a messaging training for the Census with MassCount at 6:00 PM at their Springfield office on 191 Chestnut St. 3C. 

Paul will digest the barriers and approaches discussed and follow up to better understand PV CCC members’ assets and abilities.

Pat said he would send out a monthly e-newsletter with important updates, timelines, funding and employment opportunities, and new collateral as it becomes available.

Pat will also send out a Doodle poll in short order to get next month’s PV CCC meeting on the books.





Continuing, Comprehensive, and Cooperative Planning Process

Average Annual Daily Traffic

American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials

Advisory Council on Historic Preservation

Americans with Disabilities Act (1990)

Average Daily Traffic

American Farmland Trust

Alternative Fuel Vehicles

American Heritage Rivers Initiative

American International College

Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations

Approval Not Required

American Planning Association

Aquifer Protection District

Air Quality Index

Air Quality Index

American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (of 2009)

Automatic Traffic Recorder

Average Vehicle Ridership

Barnes Aquifer Protection Advisory Committee

Business Improvement District

Bicycle Level of Service

Best Management Practice

Bridge Management System

Board of Appeals (or Adjustment)

Board of Health

Berkshire Regional Planning Commission

Bureau of Transportation Statistics

Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990

Commercial Area Revitalization District

Community Action Statement

Central Business District

Cape Cod Commission

Cooperating Colleges of Greater Springfield

Community Development

Community Development Action Grant

Community Development Block Grant

Centers for Disease Control

Community Development Corporation

Community Development Fund

Community Development Plan

Community Economic Development Assistance Corporation

Community Economic Development Assistance Corporation

Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy

Community Enterprise Economic Development

Citizen Housing and Planning Association

Community Housing Development Organizations

Capital Improvement Inventory System

Capital Improvements Plan (or Program)

Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program

Congestion Management Process

Central Massachusetts Regional Planning Commission

Consolidated Metropolitan Statistical Area

Compressed Natural Gas

Carbon Monoxide

Council of Governments

Commonwealth Procurement Access and Solicitation System

Community Preservation Act

Citizen Planner Training Collaborative

Capitol Region Council of Governments

Community Service Block Grant

Combined Sewer Overflow

Department of Conservation and Recreation

Department of Environmental Protection

Division of Employment and Training

Department of Housing and Community Development

Direct Local Technical Assistance

Department of Energy Resources

Department of Revenue

Department of Transportation

Department of Public Works

Developments of Regional Impact

Executive Order

Production of affordable housing across a broad range of incomes 

Economic Assistance Coordinating Council

Economic Development Administration

Economic Development Council

Economic Development District

Economic Development Data and Information System

Economic Development and Industrial Corporation

Environmental Impact Report

Environmental Impact Statement

Environmental Justice

Environmental Notification Form

Economic Opportunity Area

Executive Office of Administration and Finance

Executive Office of Economic Affairs

Executive Office of Elder Affairs

Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs

Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development

Environmental Protection Agency

Environmental Site Assessment

Economic Target Area

Federal Aid

Functional Classification (of roadways)

Federal Housing Administration

Federal Highway Administration - An agency of the United States Department of Transportation that provides financial and technical support to each state for constructing, improving, and preserving America’s highway system.

Federal Highway Administration

Franklin Regional Council of Governments

Federal Transit Administration

Greenhouse Gas

Geographic Information System - A system for capturing, storing, analyzing and managing data and associated attributes which are spatially referenced to the earth.

Geographic Information System

Global Positioning System

Housing Appeal Committee


Holyoke Community College

Housing Development Support Program

Housing Innovation Fund

Home Modification for Individuals with Disabilities Loan

Highway Overlay District

Historic Overlay District

Homeownership Opportunities Program

High Occupancy Vehicle

Housing Preservation Grant

Housing Production Plan

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

Invitation for Bid

Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991

Intelligent Transportation Systems

Job Access and Reverse Commute

Jacob's Ladder Scenic Byway

Jacob's Ladder Trail

Joint Transportation Committee

Local Board(s) of Health

Limited English Proficiency

Local Housing Authority

Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program

Low Income Housing Tax Credit

Level of Service

Local Option Transportation Tax

Local Pavement Management System

Light Rail Vehicle

Local Technical Assistance

Massachusetts General Laws

Hazardous waste cleanup regulations

Uniform procurement law for local governments


Planning/comprehensive permits

Smart growth zoning and housing production

Smart growth school cost reimbursement

Subdivision control

Expedited permitting

Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century

Metropolitan Area Planning Council

Massachusetts Association of Regional Planning Agencies

Massachusetts Department of Transportation

Massachusetts Geographic Information System

Minority Business Enterprises

Massachusetts Development Finance Agency 

Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act

Massachusetts Geographic Information Council

Massachusetts Historical Commission 

Massachusetts Housing Partnership

Massachusetts Industrial Finance Agency

Municipal Incentive Grant

Massachusetts Municipal Association

Memorandum of Agreement

Massachusetts Office of Business Development

Massachusetts Office on Disability

Memorandum of Understanding

Metropolitan Planning Organization

Metropolitan Planning Organization

Montachusett Regional Planning Commission

Metropolitan Statistical Area

Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices

Martha's Vineyard Commission

Merrimack Valley Planning Commission

Massachusetts Water Resources Authority

National Association of Regional Councils

New England Association of Regional Councils

Non-Federal Aid

National Historic Preservation Act of 1966 (as amended)

National Highway System

Neighborhood Housing Services program

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

Northern Middlesex Council of Governments

Nitrogen Oxide

Nantucket Planning and Economic Development Commission

National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System 

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Transportation Safety Board

Old Colony Planning Council

Overall Condition Index (Pavement)

Open Space and Recreation Plan

Pavement Condition Index

Priority Development Fund

Purchase of Development Rights

Peak Hour Traffic (or Trips)

Payment in Lieu of Taxes

[Metropolitan] Planning Funds

Pavement Management System 

Primary Metropolitan Statistical Area

Pavement Management Users Group

Planner on a Disc

Public Participation Process

Planned Unit Residential Development

Pioneer Valley Regional Brownfields Cleanup Revolving Loan Fund

Pioneer Valley Transit Authority

Quaboag Valley Community Development Corp.

Rental Development Action Loan

Regional Employment Board

Regional Education and Business Alliance

Regional Economic Models, Inc.

Request For Proposal

Request for Qualifications

Request for Response

Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative

Roadway Inventory Files

Revolving Loan Fund

Regional Planning Agency

Regional Pavement Management System

Regional Transit Authority

Regional Technology Corporation

Regional Transportation Plan

Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users

Small Business Administration

Supplier Diversity Office 

State Implementation Plan (for air quality)

Sustainable Knowledge Corridor

Single Occupancy Vehicle

Special Permit

Special Permit Planning

Site Plan Review

Statewide Planning and Research Funds

Single Room Occupancy

Southeastern Regional Planning and Economic Development District

Springfield Technical Community College

Statewide Transportation Improvement Program

Surface Transportation Program

Targeted Brownfields Assessment

Transportation and Community System Preservation [Pilot Program]

Transportation Demand Management

Transfer of Development Rights

Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century

Tax Increment Financing

Transportation Improvement Program

The Literacy Project

Turning Movement Count

Traditional Neighborhood District

Transit Oriented Design (or Development)

Transportation Research Board

Trip Reduction Ordinance

Transportation Systems Management

Urban Growth Boundary

Urban Land Institute

University of Massachusetts

University of Massachusetts Donahue Institute

Unified Planning Work Program

Urban Revitalization Development Grant

U.S. Department of Agriculture

U.S. Department of the Interior

U.S. Forest Service

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

U.S. Geological Survey

U.S. Public Land Survey

Underground Storage Tanks

Vehicle Miles Traveled

Volatile Organic Compound

Vehicle Occupancy Rate

Ware Adult Learning Center

Weatherization Assistance Program

Women-owned Business Enterprises

Wellhead Protection Area

Western New England University

Water Quality Management Plan

Westfield River Watershed Association

Westfield River Wild & Scenic Advisory Committee

Water Supply Protection [District]

Westfield State University

Zoning Board of Adjustment (or Appeals)