[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 135 (Monday, July 15, 2013)]
[Notices]
[Pages 42037-42038]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-16822]


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Notices
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains documents other than rules 
or proposed rules that are applicable to the public. Notices of hearings 
and investigations, committee meetings, agency decisions and rulings, 
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statements of organization and functions are examples of documents 
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Federal Register / Vol. 78, No. 135 / Monday, July 15, 2013 / 
Notices

[[Page 42037]]



DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE


Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request

    The Department of Commerce will submit to the Office of Management 
and Budget (OMB) for clearance the following proposal for collection of 
information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 
U.S.C. chapter 35).
    Agency: U.S. Census Bureau.
    Title: 2013 Census Test.
    OMB Control Number: None.
    Form Number(s): The automated survey instrument will have no form 
number.
    Type of Request: New collection.
    Burden Hours: 334.
    Number of Respondents: 2,000.
    Average Hours per Response: 10 minutes.
    Needs and Uses: The U.S. Constitution gives the Census Bureau the 
authority to enumerate the U.S. population every ten years. In 2010, 
the Census Bureau encouraged housing units in areas that received a 
mailed 2010 Census form to fill out and mail back this Census 
questionnaire. In total, 47,197,405 housing units did not mail back 
their form and were included in Nonresponse Followup (NRFU), which 
employed enumerators to obtain information from each occupied housing 
unit included in the NRFU workload. This activity cost $1,589,397,886.
    In preparation for the 2020 Census, the Census Bureau is testing 
self-response strategies to decrease the NRFU workload and contact 
strategies to decrease the cost of NRFU. This pre-test will examine the 
use of administrative records and an adaptive contact strategy tailored 
to each household to reduce the NRFU workload and to increase NRFU 
production rates, while attempting to maintain or to increase the level 
of data quality. Specifically, this pre-test will use current Census 
infrastructure to research (1) removing households from the NRFU 
interviewer workload using administrative records and (2) employing an 
adaptive contact strategy tailored to each household. This pre-test 
will inform the use of administrative records and future NRFU contact 
strategies tested during the 2020 Research and Testing Program. The 
results from this pre-test are necessary to reduce the risks associated 
with a larger scale implementation of an adaptive contact strategy 
component, which is planned for the 2014 Census Test.
    The Census Bureau will conduct the 2013 Census Test on 2,000 
housing units in the Philadelphia metropolitan area. To simulate a NRFU 
data collection environment, the sample will consist of housing units 
that did not mail back a self-response form in the 2010 decennial 
census based on the 2010 Census NRFU universe. Data collection will 
begin in October 2013 and end in November 2013.
    The sampled housing units will be divided across four treatments:
     (Treatment 1) use of administrative records to reduce 
workload and a fixed contact strategy, in which all cases have the same 
contact strategy until enumerated,
     (Treatment 2) no use of administrative records to reduce 
workload and a fixed contact strategy,
     (Treatment 3) use of administrative records to reduce 
workload and an adaptive contact strategy, in which cases are assigned 
unique contact strategies determined by response likelihood and cost 
models, and
     (Treatment 4) no use of administrative records to reduce 
workload (records used only to prioritize cases) and an adaptive 
contact strategy.
    After mailing a pre-notice asking for participation in this study, 
the Census Bureau will employ administrative records in Treatments 1 
and 3 to remove occupied housing units from the NRFU workload, if there 
are records for these units containing sufficient information to 
enumerate them. The suitability of records for enumerating these 
housing units is determined through the Census Bureau's research on 
matching administrative records information to 2010 Census NRFU housing 
units.
    The Census Bureau will mail all housing units a prenotice letter 
two weeks before the start of data collection, alerting residents about 
the upcoming study. For the treatments in which administrative records 
are employed to reduce the NRFU workload (Treatments 1 and 3), the 
Census Bureau will remove housing units from this data collection whose 
prenotice letters are not returned with ``undeliverable as addressed'' 
United States Postal Service information and that have record evidence 
of occupancy. These housing units will be classified as ``occupied'' 
for purposes of the study. In these treatments, the Census Bureau also 
will remove housing units from this data collection whose prenotice 
letters are returned with ``undeliverable as addressed'' United States 
Postal Service information and that have no other record evidence of 
occupancy. These housing units will be classified as ``vacant'' for 
purposes of the study.
    The Census Bureau will not employ administrative records to reduce 
workload in Treatments 2 and 4. Instead, administrative records will 
prioritize cases for contact in the adaptive design condition 
(Treatment 4).
    The Census Bureau will match NRFU housing units to cell and 
landline telephone numbers. In the fixed contact strategy treatments 
(Treatments 1 and 2), the Census Bureau will instruct computer-assisted 
personal interviewing (CAPI) interviewers to telephone housing units 
before performing personal visits. Interviewers will attempt to contact 
housing units without telephone numbers via personal visits. If an 
interviewer cannot complete an interview, they will be instructed to 
obtain a proxy interview.
    In the adaptive contact strategy treatments (Treatments 3 and 4), 
the Census Bureau will send telephone numbers to a computer-assisted 
telephone interviewing (CATI) operation where interviewers will attempt 
to contact and to interview housing units for two weeks. At the end of 
these two weeks, nonresponding CATI cases will be moved to CAPI 
interviewers who will attempt personal visits (Housing units without 
telephone numbers will be sent straight to CAPI interviewers during 
these two weeks). CAPI interviewers in the adaptive contact strategy 
treatments will be told on a daily basis which cases are priority for 
contact and when to perform proxy

[[Page 42038]]

interviews, as determined by response likelihood and cost models.
    The Census Bureau will use existing staff and office infrastructure 
for this pre-test. Where necessary, the Census Bureau will modify 
existing systems and field procedures.
    The Census Bureau will use the 2013 Census Test to test operational 
procedures that might increase NRFU efficiency. Secondary goals of the 
research include gaining an initial measurement of the cost savings 
associated with using administrative records and an adaptive design 
contact strategy to enumerate simulated non-responding housing units 
and measuring the quality of data produced by these approaches.
    The primary goal of the test will be to assess whether the Census 
Bureau can implement a simulated NRFU data collection using adaptive 
design and administrative records during production. Secondary goals 
will measure the cost and data quality between two sets of groups. One 
analysis will compare operational efficiency, cost, and data quality 
between treatments that use and that do not use administrative records 
to reduce the NRFU workload. Another analysis will compare operational 
efficiency, cost, and data quality between treatments that use an 
adaptive design contact strategy versus a fixed contact strategy. The 
Census Bureau will also examine the interaction of adaptive design and 
the use of administrative records on operational efficiency, cost, and 
data quality.
    The 2013 Census Test will inform future 2020 Census NRFU tests, 
which includes a test of administrative records and self-response and 
NRFU contact strategies in 2014. Data will not be released as Census 
Bureau data products or be used for official estimates. Rather, results 
will aid in determining how to test the use of administrative records 
and an adaptive contact strategy in future, larger tests. Results will 
also inform the infrastructure required to support using administrative 
records and a centralized CATI system to enumerate a NRFU population, 
as well as an operational control system (OCS) that enables real-time 
case prioritization and mode switching.
    The Census Bureau plans to make the aggregated results of this 
study available to the public. Information quality is an integral part 
of the pre-dissemination review of the information disseminated by the 
Census Bureau (fully described in the Census Bureau's Information 
Quality Guidelines). Information quality is also integral to the 
information collections conducted by the Census Bureau and is 
incorporated into the clearance process required by the Paperwork 
Reduction Act.
    Data from the test will be included in reports with clear 
statements about the test's methodology and limitations. Reports will 
state that the data were produced for decision-making and exploratory 
research, not for official estimates. Research results may be prepared 
for presentations at professional meetings or in publications in 
professional journals to promote discussion within the larger survey 
and statistical community and to encourage further research and 
refinement. All presentations or publications will provide clear 
descriptions of the test's methodology and its limitations.
    The Census Bureau published a notice in the Federal Register on 
September 6, 2012 (Vol. 77, No. 173, pp. 54887-54889) announcing its 
intention to conduct a test of alternative contact strategies in a 
census environment. The 2013 Census Test is being submitted as a 
component of and a precursor to that larger test to be conducted in 
2014 (the 2014 Census Test). In the notice, we requested 36,167 burden 
hours. The 2013 Census Test will use 334 of that total. The 2014 Census 
Test will use the remainder of this amount.
    Affected Public: Individuals or households.
    Frequency: One Time.
    Respondent's Obligation: Mandatory.
    Legal Authority: Title 13 U.S.C., Sections 141 and 193.
    OMB Desk Officer: Brian Harris-Kojetin, (202) 395-7314.
    Copies of the above information collection proposal can be obtained 
by calling or writing Jennifer Jessup, Departmental Paperwork Clearance 
Officer, (202) 482-0336, Department of Commerce, Room 6616, 14th and 
Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230 (or via the Internet at 
jjessup@doc.gov).
    Written comments and recommendations for the proposed information 
collection should be sent within 30 days of publication of this notice 
to Brian Harris-Kojetin, OMB Desk Officer either by fax (202-395-7245) 
or email (bharrisk@omb.eop.gov).

    Dated: July 9, 2013.
Gwellnar Banks,
Management Analyst, Office of the Chief Information Officer.
[FR Doc. 2013-16822 Filed 7-12-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-07-P