JOINT RELEASE: San Antonio Congressional Delegation Encourages Community to Complete 2010 Census
Members of Congress Urge Community to Make Themselves Count and Mail Forms Back
Today, members of the San Antonio Congressional Delegation, including Congressmen Henry Cuellar, Charles Gonzalez and Ciro Rodriguez, joined Census and local officials to encourage San Antonio residents to make themselves count with the 2010 Census by completing and mailing back their forms by April 1, 2010.Today, members of the San Antonio Congressional Delegation, including Congressmen Henry Cuellar, Charles Gonzalez and Ciro Rodriguez, joined Census and local officials to encourage San Antonio residents to make themselves count with the 2010 Census by completing and mailing back their forms by April 1, 2010.
“This is a community-wide campaign to make San Antonio count,” said Congressman Henry Cuellar (TX-28). “It’s time to check your mailbox, fill out the form and mail it back. With just 10 questions, it takes 10 minutes to complete and that can make a big difference for our community.”
The 2010 Census aims to count all residents living in the United States. Information collected from the Census helps determine population size and other unique regional factors like average median incomes. This information, in part, helps determine how over $400 billion in annual federal funding is distributed to state, local and tribal governments.
“Every ten years, Americans have the opportunity and the duty to be counted for the Census,” said Congressman Charlie Gonzalez (TX-20). “The simple and confidential form is all it takes to be counted, but the returns are much greater. Not only does an accurate count encourage investments from the government, but it also attracts businesses to our communities. The businesses will go where the people are and as one of the fastest growing cities in America, San Antonio will attract many new economic opportunities.”
During the 2000 Census, the national participation rate was 72% and Texas had a statewide participation rate of 67%. According to the Census, Bexar County’s participation rate was slightly higher than the state average at 72%.
“Getting an accurate picture of how many people there are in Texas is important in leveraging federal resources,” said Congressman Ciro Rodriguez (TX-23). “It’s a simple process and I would encourage everyone to answer the ten simple questions asked on the Census forms. It only takes a few minutes and can make a world of difference in the types of services, projects and programs available in your community.”
“At the time of the first U.S. census in 1790, the population of the country was approximately 3.9 million. Today, there are nearly 309 million Americans,” said Congressman Lamar Smith (TX-21). “I represent one of the fastest growing congressional districts in the country and Texas is a growing state. One of the reasons it is so important to conduct the census in an honest and fair way is because it will help determine the number of congressional representatives for Texas.”
Beginning next week, the U.S. Census Bureau will start mailing millions of census forms to over 400 million addresses nationwide and has asked residents to mail the forms back by April 1. Forms are bilingual with English and Spanish questions, and pre-paid postage on the forms make them free to mail back.
The U.S. Constitution requires a national Census once every 10 years and the 2010 Census is one of the shortest questionnaires in Census history. This year, the Census also aims to improve counts in historically undercounted areas, including communities along the Texas Southern Border, known as “hard to count” communities.
In January, Congressman Cuellar, member of the Subcommittee on Information Policy, Census and National Archives, toured one of these communities along the Texas Southern Border with U.S. Census Director Robert M. Groves to raise awareness and promote participation for the 2010 Census.
For more information on the 2010 Census and to track how forms are being mailed back, please visit www.2010census.gov.