Thursday, April 1, 2010
It looks like April first is no longer just for pranks...at least for this year. According to the government, today is National Census Day, marking the target date for residents across the nation to turn in their 2010 census forms. Over 134-million forms have been sent out to households nationwide in an effort to count the country's population 121 million by mail and 9 million in person. U.S. Census Senior Regional Media Specialist Pam Page-Bellis says the census means two imoprtant factors for every community. The government has spent 14.7 billion dollars on this effort for an accurate population count, including a 133 million dollar advertising campaign to spread the word of the census. Page-Bellis says she hopes this campagin will make a big difference. Page-Bellis also stresses the most important aspect of the census the effect it has on a person's daily routine. And for local residents, the census will ensure Gainesville has proper representation in congress based on the numbers provided. The Government also has 400 billion dollars to allocate to communities. Local Census Office Manager for Gainesville Norman Sassner says its important for Gainesville to recieve a part of those funds. Both Sassner and Page-Bellis say the quicker you send your form in, the better. Starting May 1st, census employees will start going door-to-door for residents who did not respond. Page-Bellis says mailing in your form is not only easier, but it will save money for the government as well. The cost of the government effort would fall by 1.5 billion dollars if everyone mailed back their census forms and the more people get counted, the more they'll get from the government.