New Mexico Has Low Census Return Rate

New Mexico – The Census Bureau reports that about 47 percent of New Mexicans have so far returned their Census forms by mail.

That's among the lowest participation rates of any state and below the national rate of 56 percent.

New Mexico and three other states are below 50 percent in returning Census forms. Alaska is at 42 percent, Texas is 48 percent and Louisiana, 49 percent.

Census spokeswoman Veronica Reyes said Monday it's unclear why New Mexicans are lagging behind on the Census.

Starting May 1, census workers will visit households that failed to mail back their forms. The agency encourages people to return their forms by mail because it's less costly than using census takers to collect the information.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.