MTA Press Releases

Press Release
September 21, 2020
IMMEDIATE
MTA Launches New ‘Countdown’ Campaign to Fill Out 2020 Census

 New Public Service Announcements Playing on Subways, Buses and Commuter Rails Encouraging Riders to Help Public Transportation by Filling Out Census Before Sept. 30 Deadline 

MTA Urges New Yorkers To Get Counted with Billions in Federal Funding at Stake During Unprecedented Fiscal Crisis

View New Campaign Here

As the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) faces an unprecedented fiscal crisis requiring billions of dollars in emergency federal aid, the Authority today announced a new campaign encouraging public transportation riders to fill out the 2020 Census before the Sept. 30 deadline.

MTA is currently experiencing $200 million in revenue losses every week – an unprecedented crisis that eclipses even the Great Depression’s impact on its ridership and finances. These declines, compounded by the loss of state and local taxes and subsidies that support the organization, have left the MTA with a $16 billion projected deficit through 2024. The MTA needs $12 billion in emergency federal aid to make it through 2021. To encourage New Yorkers to fill out the 2020 census as the deadline approaches, the MTA is launching public service announcements across the subway, commuter rail and bus systems, in addition to new Countdown graphics that can be seen on the MTA’s social media channels and on thousands of digital screens throughout the system.

“Representation has never been more vital to mobility in the New York metropolitan region and we are urging New Yorkers to fill out the census and get counted as we face an unprecedented fiscal crisis,” said Patrick J. Foye, Chairman and CEO of the MTA. “One of our best tools in demonstrating the impact the MTA has on the nation’s economy – and fighting for critical federal funding to improve transit and reduce traffic congestion – is counting just how many people rely on public transit to get around.”

A federal court date is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 24 to determine whether deadline will be extended past Sept. 30. Data from the census helps direct billions of dollars in federal funds to local communities for public services, including transportation.

Beginning today, riders will hear the following announcements throughout the system:

Subway

Hello everyone. In less than 10 minutes, you can help subways get their fair share of federal funding: Just fill out the census before the September 30th deadline. Every rider counts, so get counted, New York! Visit 2020census.gov to complete your census form today.

Buses

Hello everyone. In less than 10 minutes, you can help buses get their fair share of federal funding: Just fill out the census before the September 30th deadline. Every rider counts, so get counted, New York! Visit 2020census.gov to complete your census form today. 

Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North Railroad

Hello everyone. In less than 10 minutes, you can help the MTA get its fair share of federal funding: Just fill out the census before the September 30th deadline. Every rider counts, so get counted! Visit 2020census.gov to complete your census form today.

The MTA’s digital ad campaign will appear on more than more than 5,500 digital screens throughout the subway system, 2,600 screens on buses and more than 900 screens across the commuter rail system. The illustrations were created in house by Steve Moverley from NYC Transit’s Digital Content team. The ads refer to the US Census 2020 website and the hashtag #GetCountedNY, for stations in New York State.

In the 2010 Census, New York City’s self-response rate was less than 62%, compared to the national average of 76%. According to the census website, only 63% of New Yorkers have filled out their census for 2020.

The 2020 census can be filled in approximately 10 minutes by most people and can be done by mail, over the phone, or online.