In March 2010, every household across the nation received a Census form. We’re tracking return rates through the U.S. Census Bureau Take 10 Map at As of March 29, Isla Vista had the lowest return rates in the county, with only 23 percent of households participating. That means that 77 percent of households in Isla Vista had not returned their forms.

Isla Vista needs everyone to mail back their Census forms to ensure that the community receives its fair share of the $400 billion the federal government distributes every year. Low participation in the Census can result in our community receiving less federal funding and less access to important services and resources than we might otherwise have received.

Why is Census data important to Isla Vista and UCSB?
• Census data affect college and university tuition grant and loan programs.
• The Census helps employers understand where the next generation of workers is coming from, which will influence recruitment efforts.
• Scientific research depends on Census data. College and university students, as well as faculty use Census information for reports, statistical analysis and other research projects.

The Census is fast and easy with just 10 questions taking 10 minutes to complete: Depending on the following living situations, students will participate differently:
• Living on campus: If a student lives in a residence hall or a sorority or fraternity house, he or she will receive a 2010 Census form in April or May 2010. Students should complete the form and turn it in to a designated site on campus. It’s that easy.
• Living off campus: If a student lives off campus, 2010 Census forms were delivered or mailed to his house or apartment in March 2010. All students living at the address are considered one household, so only one form should be completed with information about all the people living at that address. Mail the completed form in the U.S. Mail envelope provided.
• Living with parents or guardians: If a student resides full time in his parents’ household, he or she should be accounted for on his or her parents’ household form.
• An international student or non-U.S. citizen: Everyone in the United States must be counted. This includes people of all ages, races, ethnic groups, citizens and noncitizens.

Please, join us in encouraging everyone in Isla Vista to complete their Census form. For more information, visit If you have questions about the Census form call (866) 872-6868.

Today, Isla Vista had a 23 percent return rate. Tomorrow, with your help, where will we be?

Derek Johnson is the director of the Santa Barbara County Office o

Today, Isla Vista had a 23 percent return rate. Tomorrow, with your help, where will we be?