[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/04/01/art.census.gi.jpg caption="Americans overwhelmingly say that the census is useful and not an invasion of their privacy, according to a new national poll."]Washington (CNN) - Americans overwhelmingly say that the census is useful and not an invasion of their privacy, according to a new national poll.
A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey indicates that 80 percent of the public says that the census is useful, with just one in four saying the census is a waste of money. And 83 percent of people questioned in the poll say they don't consider the census an invasion of their privacy.
"These numbers are virtually unchanged from a decade ago," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "In 2000, only 18 percent said the census was an invasion of privacy and only 14 percent thought it was a waste of money."
The survey's Thursday morning release comes on National Census Day. Census forms ask all Americans to describe everyone who is living in their household as of April 1, and some cities will host rallies on April 1 in an attempt to get as many Americans as possible to mail in their completed census questionnaires.
The poll indicates that two-thirds say this year's census will be very or somewhat accurate, with one in three saying the census will be somewhat or very inaccurate.
The United States, as mandated by the Constitution, conducts a census every ten years, to count every resident in the nation. The results are used in order to determine each state's number of members to the House of Representatives. Census figures are also used in order determine how much federal funding each state receives.
The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted March 19-21, with 1,030 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.
–CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.