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Census Bureau to visit Vandenberg

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- U.S. Census Bureau listers can be identified by their bright orange vests, employee badges and their hand-held computers they carry with them door-to-door. Census listers are scheduled to visit Vandenberg AFB in early April. (Courtesy photo)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- U.S. Census Bureau listers can be identified by their bright orange vests, employee badges and their hand-held computers they carry with them door-to-door. Census listers are scheduled to visit Vandenberg AFB in April. (Courtesy photo)

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- Census Bureau employees from the Santa Maria Local Census Office visited with the base liaison here Feb. 20 to coordinate the next surveying of Vandenberg.

A team of census listers are scheduled to conduct business here beginning in April and ending in May, 2009. The census listers will go door-to-door for the Census Bureau, finding every place people live or could live. The census activity is called address canvassing.

"The U.S. Constitution requires a complete count of the resident population of the U.S. and Puerto Rico every 10 years," said Maria Dupras, Santa Maria's local census office manager. "During the first year of decennial census activities, census listers will be confirming an address and physical location for all living quarters. This will allow the Census Bureau to send or hand-deliver a census form to every location where people live or could live when the actual count of the population occurs in 2010."

The decennial census data collected will be used to reapportion representatives in Congress. The number of Congressional representatives for each state is based accordingly to each state's population. The Census Bureau will calculate the Vandenberg data with the total population count of the State of California to more accurately represent the population of the state.

Base escorts will accompany the census listers during their visit here. The listers, who can be identified by their bright orange vests, will carry employee badges and hand-held computers enabled with a Global Positioning System to allow them to associate a physical location and mailing address to every living quarter here.

"We are planning to inform the Vandenberg community about when and what to expect a few weeks before the Census Bureau arrives here," said Rick Herman, 30th Civil Engineer Squadron project manager and acting base liaison coordinating the Census Bureau visit.

The census listers gather data from the housing area, temporary living facilities, dormitories and camp ground here. All non-residential locations including commercial buildings, factories, warehouses, and churches will not be included in the survey.

The address canvassing will last approximately two months, but there will be follow-up operations conducted afterward until Census Day, April 1, 2010.

"Immediately after Census Day, the largest field operation -- the non-response follow-up -- will begin," Ms. Dupras said. "This is when the Census Bureau will reach out to every living quarter that hasn't completed and returned a census form in order to achieve its mission of a complete and accurate count of the resident population."

All information collected from Vandenberg will be completely confidential.

"It must be noted that before any census tabulation is published it is carefully checked to ensure that no individual, household or organization can be identified," Ms. Dupras said. "The information the census provides cannot be inferred by reading the statistics or analyzing the information it contains."

Once the census listers have completed their job at Vandenberg, they will turn over the collected information to the Census Bureau who will compile the information as a general statistic.