March 11, 2010 at 8:44 a.m.

2010 Census forms being delivered to homes across Chisago County

2010 Census forms being delivered to homes across Chisago County
2010 Census forms being delivered to homes across Chisago County

You should have received your 2010 census survey form. Before your household receives a mailed form, you will be given a few days' notice with a letter from the Census Bureau Director. Remember, any request for census information from the Census Bureau will be clearly identified as coming from the U.S. Census Bureau and as OFFICIAL BUSINESS of the United States.

It's important that you fill out the census form. Accurate data reflecting changes in your community are crucial in apportioning seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and deciding how more than $400 billion per year is allocated for projects like hospitals, bridges, job training centers, emergency services.

If you are worried about confidentiality of your information, don't be. Individual census records are not shared with anyone, including other federal agencies and law enforcement entities. By law, the Census Bureau cannot share respondents' answers with anyone, -- not the IRS, not the FBI, not the CIA, and not with any other government agency. The penalty for unlawful disclosure is a fine of up to $250,000 or imprisonment of up to 5 years, or both.

With only 10 questions, the 2010 Census questionnaire takes approximately 10 minutes to complete. Households are asked to provide key demographic information, including whether a housing unit is rented or owned, the address of the residence, and the names, genders, ages and races of others living in the household.

April 1 is Census Day. This is the date by which forms should be returned. Starting in May, census takers will visit households that did not return a questionnaire by mail. If you don't want to be bothered by a census taker, return your form. It's that simple. Forms cannot be filled out on-line.

During the last census, only 57 percent of forms in Chisago County were returned. Be counted so that we as a community receive our share of federal funding that is available through tax dollars we have paid into the system.

Submitted by,

Jeanne Walz, President

Chisago County League of Women Voters

Aleen Starkweather, 2010 Census Project Chair

Chisago County League of Women Voters

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