To the editor:
By now most of us have received, filled out and returned our 2010 Census forms. The form asks ten simple questions, which shouldn't take more than ten minutes to answer. If anyone has not yet returned the completed form, the Clay County Commissioners would like to encourage everybody — lifelong residents and new neighbors, temporary residents and students, people of all ages, races, ethnic groups, U.S. citizens as well as citizens of other countries temporarily living here — to invest 10 minutes to ensure that every person residing in Clay County gets counted.
Why is this so important? First, population determines our representation in Pierre and in Washington. Second, the federal government distributes more than $400 billion each year to state, local and tribal governments, based on population. Third, population growth increases economic development, bringing new services, products, businesses, and jobs to Vermillion and Clay County.
We know that in the 2000 census, not all of our neighbors were counted, including many students. Remember university students, you should be counted in Vermillion, not on your parents' form. We need everybody to be counted this time to ensure that we receive our fair share of help in providing the best possible services that benefit us all, including educational programs, job training, child care, senior citizen centers, roads, hospitals, community centers and social services.
By law, all information provided on census forms is strictly confidential. The only thing that counts is that we are all counted. If you haven't done so, please fill out your census form today and put it in the mail. In Clay County, we all count.
Clay County Commissioner