Make it count, Shelby

If you could make more than $8,000 just by filling out a 10-question form, you’d do it without thinking twice, wouldn’t you?

Well, the 2010 Census will offer everyone in Shelby County a chance to do just that for the county.

For every resident not counted in the census, Shelby County stands to lose at least $826 per year. That money goes to fund Medicaid, programs for the elderly, highway planning, food grants and job training funds — among many other federally funded programs. In other words, that money goes to help Shelby County serve its residents in better ways.

Since Shelby County is the wealthiest county in the state, the county doesn’t usually get money earmarked for low-income areas, making the county more dependent on the census to bring in money.

The census doesn’t just bring in money; it can have a vital impact on representation in the U.S. House of Representatives and on state and local legislative districts.

Also, businesses use census data when deciding where to locate new franchises or open new ventures. The more people turn in the census form, the faster Shelby County can work to improve and continue to grow. All you have to do is fill it out when you receive it in the mail and drop it back in your mailbox. For more information on the 2010 Census, visit 2010.census.gov.