Thursday, April 15, 2010
Letters To The Editor
Participate in census:
Every 10 years the U.S. Constitution says the government must do a census. Filling in the census form is important because it’s like filling in the future.
This year is the year for the count.
The census count determines how many Congressional representatives the state gets. Accurately completing the questionnaire will help with funding for community programs, roads, schools, senior citizen centers and many other community projects. Growth and rebuilding is vital to many communities, and this is one way to make sure your community gets the funds it needs to build a better future.
Businesses use census data to help locate their factories and stores.
Due to the census count in 2000, Mississippi lost one congressional seat, going from five to four, after figures revealed that population growth could not sustain five districts.
The data gathered is broken down by states, counties and cities.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Mississippi’s total population in 2000 was 2,844,658. Marshall County’s population was 34,993 with Holly Springs at 7,957, Byhalia 706, and Potts Camp 494.
Dating back to 1790 and our first census count, the 2010 census will have one of the shortest questionnaires in our history with only 10 questions and should take only a few minutes to complete.
By law, all information collected in the census is kept confidential. Your responses to the questionnaire are protected by law. Census data cannot be shared with any other government agency, not even the president of the United States.
All Census Bureau employees have taken an oath to protect confidentiality and are subject to a jail term, a fine, or both, for disclosing any information that could identify a respondent or household.
Census forms were mailed in March and should be returned by April. Census forms may be picked up at the Marshall County Library, Victoria Community Center, and Byhalia Town Hall. If you have any questions, you may call the office of the county administrator at 662-252-7903.
The Marshall County Board of Supervisors urge each and every citizen to participate in this important update to ensure that Marshall County receives maximum benefit from all state and federal programs.
This is our opportunity:
This is a response from the National ASPCA. I asked them several questions as I have done in the past regarding the animal situation in Marshall County. I have written to everyone they gave as a person who would/should be involved. Every state in the union has an SPCA, but Mississippi does not – why?
This is their response to me:
“Thank you for contacting the ASPCA regarding the lack of animal control/reporting animal cruelty in your area. Animal Control Departments are designated under the authority of dozens of different Divisions depending on the state you live in. Sometimes it is its own Division, sometimes with Public Works, Environmental, Recreation and Parks, Community Service, Engineering, Public Health Department, Sheriff’s Office, or Police Departments.
Since you have a complaint about your community lacking enforcement, in general, you should communicate directly with the city. The city officials, from the mayor, city council representatives, police chief or sheriff (or all of them) need to know about the complaint, if for no other reason than to prevent such a situation from re-occurring.
It takes local citizen involvement to make a difference in a community. National organizations have no jurisdiction or legal power in local issues but they can and do stand by, ready and willing to offer assistance to local governments and organizations through information, networking, materials, etc. Ultimately it is the local population that must either stand up and be counted in the action for reform or remain silent. It is vital that others get involved in your efforts for the community and for your local animals. Citizens have the right to voice their concerns at public meetings of local government, especially where public money is entrusted. Sometimes it is also vital that private citizens participate in the process for changes rather than animal control employees pursuing it alone.
Read our online article: Lobbying 101.
Our founder, Henry Bergh, believed that legislation was a key component in protecting animals and preventing cruelty. On April 10, 1866, a Special Act of the New York state legislature awarded Bergh a charter to form a society for the prevention of cruelty to animals – the first such organization in the Western Hemisphere. Nine days later Bergh secured passage of the first effective anti-cruelty law – and also the right to enforce it. The ASPCA became a model for other humane organizations throughout the Americas.”
Citizens of Marshall County: This is our opportunity. Perhaps there is a citizen who is able, capable, and can afford to do some lobbying. I would help in any way I could. It takes numbers, voices, donations, etc. There are enough real cases of abuse that no one will check on. There are also cases that I would consider abuse that the law does not. I think it is inhumane to let a dog lie out in the hot sun all day, on a chain, with no shelter. He can actually get up and walk a few feet every day. Isn’t that a wonderful life?
If the owner scrambles around and throws some food and water out before someone comes to check, then the animal control considers that that animal is being taken care of. It has to stop somewhere.
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