American Community Survey

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by slsh, Mar 19, 2013.

  1. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    Has anyone gotten one of these from the Census Bureau? I don't know if I'm entering my late-life difficult child stage or what, but I'm thinking the govt has lost its mind. This is *incredibly* invasive - how much is my home worth, what's my mortgage pmt, what's my real estate taxes, what time do I leave for work, what is income from last 12 months, how much was gas, water, electricity cost for the last *year*, for each person living in the home, does he/she have difficulty bathing/dressing/etc., and on and on and on. I'm surprised there's not a question asking me for (insert any completely boundary-annihilating question you can think of - there's not many they *haven't* asked).

    Arrived in an envelope saying my response is required by law. I'm thinking my response is going to be "Check with the IRS for my financial information and the rest is none of your darn business."

    Am I overreacting?
  2. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    Why would they need to know what time you left for work? If I got one of those, it would go straight in to the garbage!
  3. jal

    jal Member

  4. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    They would have to come and get me because I would NEVER answer such specific questions!

    One thing I did do ... I did my taxes on Turbo Tax again this year and when I completed it, there was a link to a survey on personal finances, spending and savings habits, conducted by Washington University in St. Louis. It offered a pre-paid $20 Visa card for taking the survey and another in six months if you complete a follow-up surveyso I went ahead and did it. But these questions were very generalized, none asking for specific information, no personal information, not intrusive and no information that I didn't care to give. It was more trying to find out what percentage of your income went to things like groceries, utilities, savings, etc. I forgot all about it until I got that little Visa card in the mail. I took it to the gas station and put $20 worth of gas in my car! But, no, if I got one like the one you received, I would refuse to answer those questions. All it would take is one unscrupulous employee to get their hands on that information ...
  5. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    The only way to fight these things is on the political level... sometimes we have to do that too (here in Canada), especially when the Census gets a bit TOO personal.
  6. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    Yes - I've been researching it. Have decided I'm not going to answer their questions. Based on others' experiences, I can expect Census workers to start calling and pounding on my door in the next couple of weeks. Still not going to participate in this - it's really intrusive.

    I've also found that I'm not the only person in the country who thinks these questions are way out of bounds.
  7. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Call your federal politician. Start the political complaining. THEY need to hear it.
  8. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    I'm not even sure I filled out the census. I wish I was joking..........but I'm not. I remember getting it.........I don't remember filling it out and sending it back. Doesn't mean I didn't, just means I don't remember. lol

    Now this whole "required by law" thing? Maybe it is, but the mail being the way it how on earth are they gonna prove you ever saw the thing?

    Yes. My gfgdom still surfaces from time to time. Census and this sort of thing tends to trigger it. Don't give me all the blah blah blah reasons cuz I simply don't think there is a reason good enough for the govt poking it's nose into my private business.
  9. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    Does this remind anyone else of England's window tax on the American colonies? Contacting that representative in FL who is fighting this would be a good way to start.
  10. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    Since Jesse Jackson Junior is yet another criminal politician from IL (sigh), I am not currently represented in the House, but my 2 Senators got the following email.

    Dear Senator:

    I have just received my second ACS, having placed the first one in a pile of junk mail since I participated in the decennial census and couldn't imagine what the Census Bureau would want with me in 2013. Upon opening my second copy, I am absolutely horrified that the Census Bureau thinks they have the right to request this information, with the intimidating phrase (in all caps and bolded) on the front of the envelope that "YOUR RESPONSE IS REQUIRED BY LAW."

    My initial response to the survey was that it was a scam. Who in their right mind would ask these questions and expect answers? Well, apparently it's my government.

    I fail to see how the number of marriages I have had will contribute to the stated purpose of the ACS, i.e. "help decide where new schools, hospitals, and fire stations are needed" or "develop programs to reduce traffic congestion, provide job training, and plan for the health care needs of the elderly." Ditto my mortgage info, insurance info, income, utility bills, and whether or not I have indoor plumbing/stove/refrigerator/sink with a faucet/etc.

    This is an utterly *inappropriate* questionnaire. I understand there was an effort last year, I believe in the House, to end this survey. I don't see where it went any further, but.... seriously? I really find it appalling that I am "required by law" to provide such personal and irrelevant information to any government agency. While I realize there are more pressing issues requiring your attention, I do think it might be cost-saving to scrap this ridiculous program.

  11. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    Hound Dog - if you didn't do the census, someone would've showed up at your door, LOL. I *did* fill the census and I still got a census taker at my door.
  12. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    We got someone at the door, as I forgot to mail ours back in. Lisa... given the timing, is it possible they spoke with Travis or Fred? Or even Nichole?

    Apparently this is real. I won't answer, either.
  13. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Travis doesn't answer the door unless it is the expected pizza dude, and only then because I usually refuse to do so. LOL

    I dunno, Fred might have................... I'm difficult child enough that if pressed for such things.........would give totally bogus info just to mess with them. lol So maybe he did.

    This new one? Will go into the trash. phht. Not happening. None of their beeswax. Someone comes to my door? Will get an ear full........and a whole lot of bogus answers at best.
  14. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Sue.....oh I am so far ahead of you on this one! I got my first one of those stupid things last summer. I was so sick it sat on the counter for awhile and I read it and then I read it some more and I got so confused! The sheer number of questions they asked and the personal information for every member of the home is daunting but yet they say it will only take 35 minutes tops....lmao! In who's world? Maybe for one person who has no life, never married, never had kids, never had anyone in the military, nothing.

    I do what I do best. I ignored it. The second one came. I ignored that one two. For one thing, I wasnt sure if I was supposed to do it on the people in my home when the form came, when I did the census or when. Then one day...knock knock knock...the census folks showed up. They came in and asked me normal census questions. Nothing about income, nothing about military, nothing about all the stuff that would have been so hard and time consuming to fill out. She comes in with her laptop and takes down names, dates of births, places of births, highest education, marriages, working status, asks about renting or own home, number of vehicles, and I think that was it. Heck if I could have done it online I could have probably done the stupid thing myself!
  15. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    So - long story short (I've been chewing on this stupid issue since Tuesday) - there is currently a resolution in the House Committee on Oversight and Government reform (H.R. 1078) to make participation in this survey voluntary. So I want to contact the members of the committee to ask them to please get this thru committee and to the full House. Every single Congressman states they will only reply to people in their district (and they verify by making you enter your zip+4 before you can send the email). When I enter my zip plus 4, I get told to contact *my* Congressman!!!!!!

    Well, gee, I would except he just copped a plea deal because he's a criminal, and I don't currently *have* a congressman.:919Mad:
  16. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    I am soooooooooooooooooooo glad I left that state 30 yrs ago. geez
  17. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    Which congressmen are on the committee? We might have someone on the board that can contact theirs for you. I know I would.
  18. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    That's the link to everyone on the committee. So far I've been able to get emails sent by putting in a zip that is in their district (I've apologized in my letter and given the real info, explaining that I don't have a congressman right now), but one guy in NC even verifies addresses - so I put his office's address in, again with an apology and the real info.

    They say Congressional courtesy dictates that Representatives should be given the opportunity to assist their own constituents. If mine wanted to help me, he ..... well, never mind, that might be too political so... he would have behaved differently. And in the meantime, what am I supposed to do??? Do I get a discount on my tax bill for this year since I'm being taxed without representation??? :rofl: Joking, joking.

    They're probably going to come and get me for fraud or something. UGH.
  19. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    One of those is my rep. I emailed him for you and if he responds I'll keep you updated.