MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - We've already seen an advertising blitz to get people to respond to the census. The next step after today is for census workers to go door-to-door. This is what it comes to now--the most expensive way to count the nation's population, sending people from home to home, trying to get an accurate count of the 48 percent of us or so, who didn't send in a census form. So many census workers have been hired, in fact, that the white house expects it could impact this week's unemployment numbers.
The White House even released a photo of the president filling out his census form. The census bureau makes the argument that mailing in your form not only saves them money -- it might help your city, town or state haul away some federal cash, which is often apportioned based on population.
450 billion dollars a year is transferred from taxpayer money back to locales based on the census numbers. The form isn't particularly long but it goes well beyond a head count, and critics have questioned its preoccupation with race.
Filling it out is the law, and if you don't expect a knock on the door. There is a big focus this year on getting an accurate count of Hispanics. Despite talk of a possible boycott, one poll shows that 85 percent of that population intends to respond.