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Census forms due May 1

Don’t let that Census 2010 envelope sit on the coffee table for too long. The government might come knocking on your door if you do.

Chilton County Commission administrator Vanessa Hendrick works as a liaison between the Census Bureau and the county.

For months, she’s attempted to raise awareness about the survey and help the bureau serve as the leading source of quality data about the nation’s people and economy.

Along with other liaisons, she organized a meeting inviting all municipalities, businesses, churches, banks and schools to raise awareness about the survey and its importance.

In many cases, citizens might not take the survey as seriously as the government would prefer.

But once they read on the envelope that they’re required by law to fill the form out, they may change their mind.

Hendrick stressed the simple format of the survey that will not prove to be too time consuming for those who fill it out. If they choose to do so, she said they will help their county a great deal.

“It’s quite simple,” she said. “It doesn’t matter if you’re illegal within the county. It’s not about that. It’s about funding for our county. The government has told us that typically Chilton County has a pretty low response rate.”

Hendrick said the government would much rather citizens fill out the surveys instead of forcing it to spend more money and labor hours by hiring people to manually administer the forms door to door.

She said if folks fill them out and throw them in the mail, they will avoid someone knocking on their doors and bothering them for the information in their homes.

“We just want people to be counted,” Hendrick said.

The deadline for mailing a Be Counted form is May 1, 2010.

For more information about the census, visit www.census.gov.