Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Census spending we almost do NOT want to know about

Multiply this story from Denver by, oh, just say 10 for starters, and you can find a whole lot of wasted money.
by Jace Larson
DENVER - The U.S. Census Bureau spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on promotional items used to convince more people to mail back their census forms, but a 9Wants to Know investigation found thousands of the items were dropped off, unused, at a local high school.
- Colorado's Census participation below average
The leftover items, such as backpacks, cloth grocery bags, hats, pins, magnets and business card holders, were dropped off at Lakewood High School last month.
"We probably had, between the backpack style [bags] and the shopping bag style [bags], over 1,000 dropped off," Lakewood High School Principal Ron Castagna told 9Wants to Know.
He estimates more than 1,000 posters printed in different languages were also dropped off at the school.
An unknown Census worker walked into the school in mid-April and asked the principal if she could leave the items. She did not ask the school to distribute them.
"[She] said, 'We have extra stuff. We're wrapping up the Census and we just want to distribute the materials,'" Castagna said.
It did not sit well with him.
"Wait a minute, times are tough and I'm sitting in a position where we've got a school district that's done everything the right way and yet we're still going to face budget cuts," he said.
Among the many boxes of posters the Census worker left at the school, were more than 300 promotional posters printed in Farsi. Farsi is the language spoken in Iran, Afghanistan and parts of Pakistan.
9Wants to Know reviewed the U.S. Census Bureau's numbers from 2000 and found 360 people spoke Farsi in all of Jefferson County at that time.
Castagna says he hopes to let students use the backs of the posters in art classes.
There is more here.

1 comment:

  1. All the stupid ads were bad enough, and billboards, etc.. Just send out the census forms and/or census takers and let the chips fall where they may. No, let's try and drum up voters!