The U.S. Census Bureau announced today the launch of a new online mapping tool that will detail how well communities responded to the 2000 Census in an effort to raise awareness for the upcoming 2010 Census, according to Web Pro News.
New visitors to the Google-based map can see the 2000 Census mail participation rates or states, countries and cities; as well as smaller areas titled, “census tracts.” Once the 2010 Census forms are in the mail mid-March, the online map will get an update that includes a tracking tool with daily updates of the 2010 Census mail participation rates. Users can then compare their 2010 Census progress using their 2000 Census rates.
“The future of your community starts with a look at its past,” said Census Bureau Director Robert M. Groves.
“The 2000 Census map allows communities to see which areas need extra attention and reminders to improve mail participation. We will be challenging communities nationwide to take 10 minutes to fill out and mail back their 2010 Census forms next month.”
According to the Census Bureau, for every one percent increase in mail response, taxpayers will save an estimated $85 million in federal funds. These funds will be used to send census workers to collect census response in person from households that don’t mail back the form.
As noted by the U.S. Constitution, the once-a-decade census must count every single person living in the U.S. The data will help figure out how more than $400 billion in federal funds are distributed to state, local and tribal governments every year. This is money that will go towards roads, hospitals, schools and social services.