The city of Circle Pines, Minnesota, and its local superhero, "Census Man," were featured in the last episode this year of HBO's "Last Week Tonight with John Oliver."
The north metro city was included in a 17-minute segment regarding the U.S. Census, as Oliver explained why it's crucial for cities across the U.S. that residents participate in the decennial population count.
Circle Pines was one of those highlighted, with Oliver noting that the city registered a population of 4,918 in the 2010 Census, a figure that left it agonizingly short of the 5,000 it needs to qualify for certain state road funding pots.
Also included in the segment was "Census Man," aka Circle Pines city council member Dean Goldberg, who has donned a cap and mask as he sets about raising awareness of the upcoming 2020 Census.
The clip shows him being interviewed at the Minnesota State Fair by FOX 9's (and BMTN alum) Amy Hockert, and naturally his appearance led to some good-natured ribbing from Oliver, who likened him to if Batman's superpower was telling people facts about bats.
You can see the Circle Pines segment in the video below, starting at around the 6:40 mark.
The wider piece highlights how important the Census is to ensure cities and towns across the U.S. get access to the government funding they need to improve their localities.
"We get money for our budget to keep taxes down, Centennial schools benefit and we get money from the state for roads that help us repair the major roads you drive on every day," Census Man Dean Goldberg told FOX 9 earlier this year.
Oliver notes there have been attempts to depress the Census turnout in recent years, not least the efforts by the Trump Administration's ultimately unsuccessful attempt to add a citizenship question to the 2020 Census.