The city of Opelousas is calling on citizens to take part in this year's census.
In 2010, the census showed a population of more than 16,000 but the mayor says that number should be higher.
"When those low numbers come in that means there's less funding that comes back to this city and community", says Opelousas Mayor Julius Alsandor.
Alsandor believes the population has grown even more since 2010, and this year he wants to make sure everyone gets counted.
"We've lost our fair share because we neglected for whatever reason it was not to do the census back in 2010.
We're passed that stage now it vitally important to the funding for our schools our healthcare our emergency first responders that we fill this form out. go to this website and do your part." Alsandor says.
Through social media and having census representatives present at council meetings, Alsandor hopes this will encourage more people to fill out the applications.
Alsandor says, "If we can educate you on how this plays a part in your lives and the lives that's coming after, there's going to be a day when I'm no longer in office but if we take these steps now those that are coming after will follow suit on that."
The city will begin accepting applications March 12th.