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Sen. Begich Hosts U.S. Commerce Sec. Locke in Alaska

Census kick off, trade expansion talks on agenda

U.S. Sen. Mark Begich today announced he is hosting U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke for a series of meetings in Anchorage Friday, Jan. 15. Secretary Locke, former governor of Washington state, will meet with Alaska business leaders, discuss rural development with the Denali Commission and help kick off the 2010 census.

Two weeks before the first count of the 2010 Census is launched in Alaska, Sen. Begich and Sec. Locke will tour the Anchorage census office to greet staff and meet with statewide Complete Count Committee (CCC) members to thank them for their efforts and encourage them to keep up their hard work. Begich and Locke also will host a roundtable discussion with Alaska business leaders on potential trade expansion between Alaska and the Pacific Rim.

"I am pleased the Obama Administration continues to recognize the importance of Alaska and our issues, and is sending Sec. Locke for a first-hand look at our unique state," Sen. Begich said. "We will meet with a number of Alaska business leaders to talk about economic development and job creation, as well as having the opportunity to provide more information about the upcoming Census and how it will be carried out."

The CCC program consists of community, business and government leaders dedicated to building awareness of the 2010 Census. One of thousands of committees throughout the country, the Alaska CCC plays a crucial role in planning and executing local efforts tailored to Alaska's population to ensure a complete count for the 2010 Census.

Sec. Locke's visit comes following a Rural Tour this past summer when four cabinet secretaries traveled to Alaska to look at issues of energy, housing, education, and agriculture.

Locke was appointed by President Obama as the 36th Secretary of Commerce and sworn into office on March 26, 2009.

The events open to the media for Sec. Locke's visit are:


9:00 - 

10:15 am

Captain Cook Hotel

Endeavor Room

Roundtable discussion with Alaska business leaders on potential trade expansion between Alaska and the Pacific Rim. Sponsored by the Anchorage Economic Development Corporation, the Alaska Chamber of Commerce and the Resource Development Council.

11:45 a.m. - 12: 40 p.m.

Census Office

2000 W. International Airport Rd.
conference room

Locke and Begich meet with Census partners and CCC committee members - open to media for comments/interviews



ABOUT THE 2010 CENSUS
The 2010 Census is a count of everyone living in the United States. By law, everyone in the United States, both citizens and noncitizens, must be counted every 10 years. Census data are used to reapportion congressional seats to states and directly affect how more than $400 billion per year in federal funding is distributed to state, local and tribal governments. The 2010 Census form is one of the shortest census questionnaires in history and takes about 10 minutes to complete. By law, the Census Bureau cannot share respondents' answers with anyone, including other federal agencies and law enforcement entities.

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