Some of you by now may have received the introductory letter in the mail alerting you to the 2010 population count and the fact that April 1 is Census Day. That letter will soon be followed by your simplified census form that is to be filled out by the head of the household and returned promptly.
Local and state officials are making every attempt to drive home the fact that filling out the form will be simple, safe and is extremely important from an economic standpoint - in that the amount of federal dollars doled out hinge on the count, i.e. the higher the count, the more money received, equating to $1,000 per year for each individual, totaling $10,000 over the ten-year time span between census counts.
Organizers are trying especially hard to target the segment of the population that in the past didn't fill out a census form for whatever the reason, in particular, college students, senior citizens, as well as the influx of new Americans, now also living in our communities.
The ten question form will take approximately ten minutes to complete. If additional help is required in the process, assistance centers complete with interpreters have been established at the West Fargo Public Library and Lutheran Social Services.
The planning department staff at West Fargo City Hall, all members of the local Complete the Count committee, are also standing ready and willing to provide whatever help is needed to see the process through to a successful fruition.
Everyone can and should contribute to making the count effort easier by replying in a timely, efficient manner, so a personal follow-up visit to your household is not required to collect the information.
Ten minutes, ten questions, ten thousand dollars - not too much to ask.