2010 Census Forms Arrive In Mail This Week

The once-in-a-decade census questionnaires have arrived. Households throughout Northern California can expect to receive the much-anticipated, 10-question form as soon as Monday, March 15. Census officials hope that people will fill out their 2010 census questionnaires and mail it back as soon as possible, saving millions of taxpayer dollars.
It costs the government just 44 cents for a postage paid envelope when a household mails back the 10-question form, which should take just 10 minutes to complete. It costs the Census Bureau $57 to send a census taker door-to-door to follow up with each household that fails to respond. In 2000, the nation reversed a three-decade decline in mail rates, achieving a participation rate of 72 percent.
Mandated by the U.S. Constitution, the census takes place on April 1, 2010. Census data determine boundaries for state and local legislative and congressional districts. More than $400 billion in federal funds are distributed annually based on census data to pay for local programs and services such as free lunch for low-income students, vocational training, road construction and emergency services.
For more information about language assistance guides and translations of the form, which are available in 59 languages, visit 2010census.gov . Telephone assistance in filling out the form is available in Spanish (1-866-928-2010), Chinese (1-866-935-2010), Vietnamese (1-866-945-2010), Korean (1-866-955-2010) and Russian (1-866-965-2010) in addition to English (1-866-872-6868). Deaf and hard-of-hearing persons can call the TDD number: 1-866-783-2010.
The US Constitution requires that everyone living in the United States be counted every ten years. All census information collected, including addresses, is confidential and protected by law (Title 13, U.S. Code, Section 9).    By law, the Census Bureau can’t share respondents’ answers with any government agency such as the FBI, the IRS, welfare and immigration. No court of law or law enforcement agency can find out respondents’ answers. All Census Bureau employees — including temporary employees — take an oath for life to keep census information confidential. Any violation of that oath is punishable by a fine of up to $250,000 and five years in prison.