Statistical Programs for the U.S. Government: 1997
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Statistical Programs of the United States Government:
Fiscal Year 1997

Table of Contents


Chapter 1. Budgets for Statistical Programs

Chapter 2. Programs and Program Changes

Chapter 3. Long-Range Plans

Appendix: Direct Funding, Reimbursable Programs, and Purchases by Agency, FY 1997 (Table)

Glossary of Agency Abbreviations

Selected Federal Statistical World Wide Web Sites


Statistical Programs of the United States Government: Fiscal Year 1997 outlines the funding proposed for Federal statistical activities in the President's budget. The budget requested an estimated $2.8 billion for statistical work in FY 1997.

The information in this report covers over 70 Federal agencies that have annual budgets of $500,000 or more for statistical activities. This information was obtained from materials supplied to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) during the budget process, with the agencies providing additional details about their expenditures for reimbursable work and purchases of statistical services.

The report fulfills a responsibility of OMB under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Section 3504(e)(2) of Title 44, United States Code) to prepare an annual report on statistical program funding. Inquiries may be directed to the Chief Statistician, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, Washington, D.C. 20503.

Chapter 1: Budgets for Statistical Programs

This chapter provides information about agency budgets for major statistical programs for FY 1995, FY 1996, and FY 1997. It highlights the impact of congressional action on the President's FY 1996 budget request and proposed FY 1997 funding for statistical activities. The chapter includes as well information about statistical work performed by agencies on a reimbursable basis and about agency purchases of statistical services and products. The budget information for FY 1997 is from the President's budget as submitted to the Congress and thus does not reflect congressional action.

Overview of Statistical Program Budgets

The following should be kept in mind when reviewing the information in this report:

FY 1995 - FY 1997
(In millions of dollars)

Department Agency 1995
ERS 53.8 53.1 54.9
FAS 32.0 34.2 35.7
FCS 20.2 21.8 22.2
FS 10.1 10.1 9.9
NASS 81.3 81.1 102.6
NRCS 87.6 90.5 106.3
COMMERCE BEA 41.3 41.5 48.6
Census 271.7 292.9 404.1
current 132.6 133.6 150.7
periodic 139.1 159.3 253.4
1990 census 0.6 0.0 0.0
2000 census 40.9 50.6 105.9
ESA 6.1 5.4 4.9
ITA 4.5 3.2 2.6
NOAA 46.7 48.5 49.3
NMFS 22.3 24.1 24.7
USTTA 1.3 1.4 0.0
DEFENSE Corps Eng 4.1 4.0 4.0
DIOR 2.4 2.1 2.2
DMDC 3.3 4.3 3.3
EDUCATION NCES* 90.0 88.0 91.9
ENERGY EIA 82.0 76.5 66.1
ES&H 28.4 36.5 30.5
OER 1.4 1.0 1.0
HHS ACF 22.4 22.5 18.9
AHCPR 66.3 29.3 43.3
AoA 3.8 1.3 3.2
ATSDR 5.0 5.0 5.0
CDC 166.6 168.0 182.7
NCHS 81.4 77.7 88.5
HCFA 14.1 14.0 13.6
HRSA 10.1 10.0 9.6
IHS 2.6 2.7 2.8
NIH 307.6 315.6 322.6
NCI 71.3 74.1 77.1
NEI 1.4 1.2 1.2
NHLBI 41.3 42.6 43.3
NIA 6.5 6.5 6.5
NIAAA 5.1 4.1 3.2
NIAID 26.2 27.5 28.9
NIAMSD 0.2 0.1 0.1
NICHD 29.1 30.0 30.0
NIDA 38.1 39.4 40.1
NIDCD 0.6 0.4 0.4
NIDDK 62.1 64.6 65.7
NIDR 3.9 3.8 3.8
NIEHS 18.5 18.9 19.3
NIGMS 0.2 0.2 0.2
NINDS 1.8 1.3 1.4
OD 1.2 0.9 1.6
OASPE 20.1 20.0 20.0
SAMHSA 70.2 54.5 49.9
HUD CP&D 0.1 0.1 0.1
Housing 1.4 1.5 1.5
OFHEO 2.2 2.6 2.8
PD&R 24.9 23.9 26.5
P&IH 0.1 0.0 0.0
INTERIOR BoM 15.9 16.8 0.0
FWS 7.9 7.1 7.3
MMS 1.5 1.5 1.5
NBS 2.1 2.0 2.0
USGS 60.7 77.5 79.8
JUSTICE BJS* 25.4 25.0 26.9
BoP 5.7 4.7 4.7
DEA 0.8 0.8 0.8
FBI 4.6 4.8 4.9
INS 1.3 1.7 2.2
LABOR BLS 349.6 343.1 372.4
ESA 4.6 3.9 3.9
ETA 39.6 39.6 41.6
MSHA 2.0 2.2 2.3
OASP 0.7 0.7 0.8
OSHA 18.9 16.5 16.9
FAA 4.1 3.4 4.4
FHWA 30.9 30.0 32.7
FRA 1.5 1.5 1.5
FTA 2.0 1.6 2.0
MARAD 1.7 1.6 1.6
NHTSA 21.8 22.1 26.7
OST 1.2 1.1 1.1
RSPA 3.8 3.1 3.2
TREASURY Customs 7.3 7.9 8.2
IRS 37.3 36.0 35.0
SOI 28.8 26.1 26.8
VETERANS AFFAIRS 53.5 54.7 58.2
OTHER AGENCIES AID 22.9 18.6 18.6
CPSC 5.1 4.9 5.5
EEOC 1.0 0.9 1.0
EPA 125.6 140.3 137.5
NASA 23.7 16.9 16.9
NSF 49.8 50.7 51.8
SBA 0.5 0.4 0.4
SSA 6.7 6.7 6.9
TOTAL 2,548.9 2,541.5 2,754.6
TOTAL without 1990 and 2000
decennial censuses
2,507.4 2,490.9 2,648.7

* Note: Figures shown in Table 1 have been provided by the agencies and are derived from "total direct program" funds (line 00.91) shown in the program and financing schedule for these agencies in the President's FY 1997 budget. The amounts for BJS and NCES include estimated salary and expenses that are not directly appropriated; the amounts for BEA and EIA include prior year balances. Components may not add to stated totals because of rounding.

Highlights of Congressional Action on the
President's FY 1996 Budget Request

The figures for FY 1996 in Table 1 reflect congressional action on the President's budget request for funding of statistical activities. The following are highlights of the impact of these appropriation levels on the programs of the principal statistical agencies:

Bureau of the Census : The FY 1996 appropriation was $48.5 million below the President's request. The primary effects on current programs involved cancellations of the monthly and annual nonresidential permits survey, the semiannual investment plans survey, and the survey of pollution abatement costs and expenditures; the quarterly Trade and Employment report, the annual Output, Exports, and Imports report, the Exports From Manufacturing Establishments report, the Current Population Reports on the Black, Hispanic, and Asian and Pacific Islander populations, marital status and living arrangements, geographic mobility, and school enrollment; individual reports on income, poverty, and non-cash benefits; and the quarterly and annual reports on housing vacancy and home ownership. The 1996 panel of the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) was reduced from 50,000 to 37,000 households, and data collection began two months later than planned. Implementation activities for the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) were deferred. Other reductions were in planned program improvements in the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), construction, and industry estimates; developing electronic reporting of business data and distributing of demographic reports; and studies on population projection methodologies for metropolitan areas. Effects on the Census Bureau's periodic programs included eliminating the 1997 Survey of Minority-Owned Business Enterprises, the Taxable Property Survey, and the 1997 Economic Censuses and Agriculture Census of Puerto Rico and the outlying areas; delaying or not implementing tests of new methods for reducing costs for the 2000 census; cancelling the production of 1995 subcounty population estimates; cancelling the updating of the periodic surveys' sample; eliminating a site from the 1996 American Community Survey; delaying the conversion of surveys to automated data collection; and delaying development of the 2000 census address list.

Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) : The FY 1996 appropriation was $11 million below the President's request. Including prior year balances, the net reduction was $10 million. As a result of this decrease, funds were not provided to support improvements in BEA's economic accounts proposed under the Economic Information Infrastructure Initiative. In addition, BEA's base programs were scaled back in the areas of foreign direct investment, pollution abatement and control expenditures, and regional projections. The regional projections program and pollution abatement and control programs are being phased out, and establishment-level data on foreign direct investment from a joint project with the Census Bureau will be produced on a five-year rather than an annual cycle.

Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) : FY 1996 funding was appropriated at $0.6 million below the President's request that included a base increase.

Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) : The FY 1996 appropriation was $33.6 million below the President's request. This reduction resulted in eliminating State level estimates for the household employment survey; eliminating the Foreign Direct Investment program; truncating price indexes for imports and exports; eliminating collective bargaining data; reducing funds for State level occupational safety and health statistics; and eliminating Federal productivity statistics. A key reengineering initiative is the planned combination of the Occupational Compensation Survey, the Employment Cost Index, and the Employee Benefits Survey into a new program called COMP2000.

Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) : The FY 1996 appropriation was $2.5 million below the President's request. This reduction resulted in delays in producing results from the 1995 American Travel Survey and the Commodity Flow Survey.

Economic Research Service (ERS) : FY 1996 funding was appropriated at $1.6 million below the President's request that included a base increase.

Energy Information Administration (EIA) : The FY 1996 appropriation was $12.4 million below the President's request. Including prior year balances, the net reduction was $8.2 million. This decrease resulted in eliminating the Residential Transportation Energy Consumption Survey; eliminating or reducing the frequency of collecting data on manufacturing facility fuel switching capability, electricity generation, petroleum refining and sales; reducing mid-term forecasting and related analysis; and eliminating or reducing publications and computer disaster recovery systems.

National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) : The FY 1996 appropriation was $8.7 million below the President's request. Funds were not provided for three initiatives: the enhanced distributed processing data base systems for the State Statistical Offices, the Pesticide Use Data Program, and the Integrated Pest Management/Restricted Use Pesticide Data program.

National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) : The FY 1996 appropriation was $16.1 million below the President's request. This funding level required changing the periodicity of some core surveys from a two-year to a three-year cycle; cancelling an assessment of adult literacy, workplace literacy, and postsecondary education skills; cancelling preparatory activities for a national survey of how classrooms operate; delaying development of procedures to include special populations in NCES surveys and assessments; cancelling the science assessment in grade 4; and delaying a test of the arts in grade 12.

National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) : The FY 1996 appropriation was $3.7 million below the President's request. This decrease required the agency to obtain additional reimbursable funds to supplement resources for preparatory activities for the 1998 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES).

FY 1997 Budget Highlights

As shown in Table 1, the FY 1997 estimated budget submitted by the President for statistical activities covered by this report is estimated at $2,754.6 million. The following are highlights of proposed program changes in the principal statistical agencies and their associated costs (in millions of dollars). Additional details about these changes are provided in Chapter 2 of this report.

Bureau of the Census : Increases are provided for the Periodic Demographic Statistics program for the 2000 census (+$57.8) and the Intercensal Demographic Estimates program (+$0.5); other demographic statistics programs and support for those programs comprising the Continuous Measurement program that includes the American Community Survey (+$10.0), Computer-Assisted Survey Information Collection (CASIC) (+$6.9), sample redesign (+$1.7), geographic support (+$8.1), and data processing systems modernization (+$16.1); the Periodic Economic Statistics program to conduct the 1997 Economic Censuses (+$7.8) and the 1997 Census of Governments (+$1.7); and the Current Economic Statistics program to expand coverage of service industries statistics (+$2.5), begin implementation of the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) (+$5.5), remedy deficiencies in nonresidential reconstruction and retail and wholesale trade statistics (+$2.6), and expand the use of automated data programs for reporting business data (+$1.8).

Bureau of Economic Analysis : Increases are provided to strengthen and extend the underlying source data for the economic accounts (+$4.9) and to develop a customer-oriented data dissemination system (+$2.3).

Bureau of Justice Statistics : The request does not include any program changes but does include an increase to the base program from the FY 1996 appropriated level (+$1.5).

Bureau of Labor Statistics : Increases are requested for continuing work on the periodic revision of the Consumer Price Index (+$4.6); participation in the government-wide development of the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) (+$2.5); and reinstating funds for State level occupational safety and health, and occupational employment statistics (+$6.1).

Bureau of Transportation Statistics : The request provides for Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (ISTEA) authorized increases (+$5.0); restoration of a Federal-aid Trust Fund rescission (+$3.0); and for computer processing modernization for the Office of Airline Information (+$0.6).

Economic Research Service : Increases are provided to collect and analyze data on farm pesticide use linked to environmental conditions and economic performance (+$1.1).

Energy Information Administration : The budget request, coupled with expected reimbursable projects, provides for approximately the same level of available funds as in FY 1996.

National Agricultural Statistics Service : Increases are provided for the transfer of the Census of Agriculture to NASS (+$17.5); the Integrated Pest Management program (+$1.5); the Postharvest Pesticide Survey (+$0.6); and the Pesticide Data Program (+$1.0).

National Center for Education Statistics : Increases are provided for the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)(+$3.9).

National Center for Health Statistics : Increases are provided to continue preparatory activities for conducting the next National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) in 1998 (+$10.8).

Reimbursable Programs

Agencies whose missions are primarily or entirely statistical often perform statistical work for others on a reimbursable basis. These reimbursements come from other agencies within the same department or other Federal agencies, State governments, and occasionally the private sector or foreign governments. Some agencies that have reimbursable programs, for example, the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (OASPE) in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), do not necessarily perform all the work. Rather, part of the reimbursable program money is used to purchase statistical work from other Federal agencies or the private sector.

Table 2 presents a list of agencies that reported performing at least $100,000 of statistical work on a reimbursable basis for State and local governments, the private sector, and/or other Federal agencies, ranked by the estimated size of the reimbursable program for FY 1997. As shown in the Appendix, of the estimated total of $408.9 million in reimbursable work, an estimated $310.8 million is performed for other Federal agencies. A large portion of the reimbursable work performed for other Federal agencies is funded through intradepartmental transfers, as discussed below.

(In millions of dollars)

Agency Direct
Census 404.1 160.5 3.1 21.0 136.5
USGS 79.8 100.2 52.3 2.9 44.9
AHCPR 43.3 48.5 0.0 0.0 48.5
NCHS 88.5 16.9 0.0 0.7 16.2
BLS 372.4 11.9 0.2 0.9 10.8
CDC (w/o NCHS) 94.2 10.6 0.0 0.7 9.9
NASS 102.6 8.5 1.8 0.0 6.7
ERS 54.9 7.6 0.4 0.0 7.2
OASPE 20.0 7.3 0.0 0.0 7.3
EIA 66.1 7.0 0.0 0.0 7.0
NOAA 49.3 6.8 0.1 4.3 2.4
NRCS 106.3 5.4 2.9 0.0 2.6
ESA (DoC) 4.9 3.1 0.1 1.8 1.2
ARS 3.0 3.0 0.0 3.0 0.0
FAS 35.7 2.1 0.0 0.0 2.1
IRS/SOI 35.0 1.8 -- 0.1 1.7
NSF 51.8 1.7 0.0 0.0 1.7
ITA 2.6 1.0 0.3 0.6 0.1
CPSC 5.5 0.9 0.0 0.0 0.9
EPA 137.5 0.9 0.0 0.0 0.9
FS 9.9 0.6 0.4 -- 0.2
NCES 91.9 0.6 0.0 0.0 0.6
BEA 48.6 0.6 -- 0.4 0.2
BJS 26.9 0.5 0.0 0.0 0.5
BTS 28.1 0.4 0.0 0.0 0.4
HRSA 9.6 0.2 0.0 0.0 0.2
FHWA 32.7 0.2 0.0 0.0 0.2
INS 2.2 0.1 0.0 0.0 0.1

Note: Reimbursements from the private sector also include funds received from foreign governments. Agencies receiving funds from foreign governments are: Census ($2,600,000); BLS ($400,000); NOAA ($200,000); BEA ($88,000); and ESA (DoC) ($11,000). Components may not add up to stated totals because of rounding. The symbol "--" indicates that the amount reported by the agency was less than $50,000.

For FY 1997, the Census Bureau has the largest reimbursable program, totaling $160.5 million. Most of this work ($136.5 million) entails data collections and preparation of tabulations for other Federal agencies. In particular, the Census Bureau expects to perform approximately $48.6 million of reimbursable work for the Department of Labor, including the Current Population Survey, the Point of Purchase Survey, and the Consumer Expenditure Survey for BLS.

Examples of reimbursable work that the Census Bureau expects to perform for other Federal agencies include: the National Schools and Staffing Surveys and the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System Survey for NCES; the National Health Interview Survey, the National Hospital Discharge Survey, and the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey for NCHS; the American Housing Survey and the Housing Sales Survey for the Department of Housing and Urban Development; the National Crime Survey and National Prisoner Statistics Program for BJS; the Commodity Flow Survey and the American Travel Survey for the Department of Transportation; and the Survey of College Graduates for the National Science Foundation. In addition, the Census Bureau receives funds from the Agency for International Development and from foreign governments for training and advising in statistical techniques.

The Water Resources Division in the United States Geological Survey (USGS) has the second largest reimbursable program estimated at $100.2 million. Among the Federal agencies, USGS performs the largest amount ($52.3 million) of work for the States through a Federal-State Cooperative Program. This program provides for water resources appraisals, hydrologic data collection and analysis, areal water-resources appraisals and special analytical and interpretive studies. The Water Resources Division also expects to perform almost $45 million in statistical work for other Federal agencies including: hydrologic data collections and analyses for the Departments of Defense, Agriculture, Energy, State, and Transportation; other agencies in the Department of the Interior; the Environmental Protection Agency; the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; and the Tennessee Valley Authority.

The Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (AHCPR) in HHS has the third largest reimbursable program estimated at $48.5 million. This reimbursable work is conducted through the use of grants, contracts, and interagency agreements for other agencies within HHS. These intradepartmental transfers of funds will be used for the National Medical Expenditure Survey and the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project.

Approximately two-thirds of BLS's reimbursable work is done for other agencies in the Department of Labor. This work includes, for example, an estimated $5.3 million that will be transferred to BLS from the Employment and Training Administration (ETA) for the Mass Layoffs Statistics Program, for surveys of training availability in companies and displaced workers, for the National Longitudinal Wage data base project, and for providing labor statistics for Vietnam era veterans. In addition, the Employment Standards Administration will transfer $1.8 million to BLS to conduct studies of occupational wages in selected areas and industries.

A large portion of the reimbursable work in HHS is done within the Department. As noted above, most of the reimbursable work performed by AHCPR will be funded from transfers from the Public Health Service one-percent evaluation fund. Most of the reimbursable statistical work performed by NCHS is done for other agencies within HHS, in particular, for other parts of its parent organization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) ($13.2 million). The CDC does almost 40 percent of its reimbursable work for HHS agencies.

Intradepartmental transfers also support much of the reimbursable work shown in Table 2 for Department of Agriculture (USDA) agencies. Approximately $6 million of NASS' reimbursable work is done for other agencies in USDA. In particular, NASS will receive from the Economic Research Service (ERS) $3.2 million for survey support in the areas of farm costs and returns. The NASS will also be reimbursed by the USDA's Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) for providing training and technical assistance in statistics ($1 million). ERS will receive approximately $7.2 million for performing evaluation studies and analyses for other USDA agencies. FAS will provide an estimated $2.1 million in statistical services to the Commodity Credit Corporation in support of export programs. The Natural Resources Conservation Service will receive approximately $0.2 million for soil survey work on Forest Service land.

At EIA, $6.5 million of the $7 million in reimbursable work will be performed for other energy agencies. The largest EIA reimbursable project ($5 million) will be to collect and process data on energy consumption, greenhouse gas, and integrated end-use energy for the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy area.

Purchases of Statistical Services

Agencies contract for statistical services with other Federal agencies, State and local governments, or with private sector organizations. Table 3 shows the agencies with total purchases of at least $1 million, ranked by total purchases; information on agencies with smaller estimated purchases is provided in the Appendix.

(In millions of dollars)

Agency Direct
BLS 372.4 131.5 77.9 0.0 53.6
CDC (w/o NCHS) 94.2 105.9 46.1 35.9 23.9
NIH 322.6 99.1 -- 91.1 8.1
NCES 91.9 83.3 2.4 72.0 8.9
NCHS 88.5 65.0 14.8 27.3 22.9
NSF 51.8 53.4 0.0 49.9 3.5
SAMHSA 49.9 47.0 17.6 28.9 0.5
ETA 41.6 40.6 40.5 0.1 0.0
FHWA 32.7 31.9 9.9 15.6 6.4
AHCPR 43.3 30.3 0.5 29.8 0.0
OASPE 20.0 27.3 0.0 22.6 4.7
PD&R 26.5 26.5 0.0 3.5 23.0
ES&H 30.5 25.7 0.0 5.7 20.1
EPA 137.5 24.3 4.7 18.3 1.3
NASS 102.6 23.4 20.6 2.8 --
FCS 22.2 22.2 0.0 22.1 0.1
BJS 26.9 21.9 3.6 3.1 15.3
NHTSA 26.7 21.2 6.0 15.2 0.0
EIA 66.1 20.0 0.0 20.0 0.0
ACF 18.9 18.9 0.4 16.0 2.5
BTS 28.1 15.9 0.0 0.0 15.9
HCFA 13.6 13.6 0.0 13.5 0.1
ERS 54.9 6.1 1.9 0.4 3.9
NOAA 49.3 5.0 2.0 3.0 0.0
FAA 4.4 4.0 0.0 1.0 3.0
FWS 7.3 3.1 0.3 0.0 2.8
OSHA 16.9 2.5 0.0 2.5 0.0
ATSDR 5.0 2.5 1.0 1.5 --
ESA (Labor) 3.9 2.3 0.5 0.0 1.8
AoA 3.2 2.3 0.0 2.3 0.0
FAS 35.7 2.1 0.0 0.0 2.1
FTA 2.0 2.0 0.0 2.0 0.0
BEA 48.6 1.8 -- 0.1 1.7
FRA 1.5 1.4 0.0 1.0 0.4
USGS 79.8 1.4 0.0 0.6 0.8
CPSC 5.5 1.1 0.1 1.0 0.0
Census 404.1 1.1 0.0 0.0 1.1
IRS/SOI 26.8 1.1 0.0 0.7 0.4
EEOC 1.0 1.1 0.0 1.0 0.1
ITA 2.6 1.0 0.0 0.5 0.5

Note: Components may not sum to stated totals because of rounding. The symbol "--" indicates that the amount reported by the agency was less than $50,000.

When the contract is a transfer of funds to another Federal agency, the contract is a direct program obligation in the budget of the purchasing agency, and is part of the reimbursable program of the agency providing the service. Examples of these kinds of purchases of statistical services were given above in the section on reimbursable programs. The National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (OASPE) in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) can purchase more than their direct funding for statistics allows because they receive the difference from other Federal agencies under their reimbursable programs.

The four largest purchasers of statistical services are the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) including NCHS ($170.9 million), BLS ($131.5 million), National Institutes of Health (NIH) ($99.1 million), and NCES ($83.4 million). They are followed by NSF ($53.4 million) and SAMHSA ($47 million). During FY 1997, it is estimated that Federal agencies covered by this report will purchase $993.5 million in statistical services. Of this total about half of the services will be purchased from the private sector, about a quarter from State and local governments, and a quarter from other Federal agencies.

The largest purchasers of statistical services from the States are BLS ($77.9 million), CDC including NCHS ($60.9 million), ETA ($40.5 million), NASS ($20.6 million), and SAMHSA ($17.6 million). The BLS funds support the cooperative labor force statistics program. The CDC funds reimburse the States for their participation in the collection of vital statistics and for their cooperation in the reporting of diseases. The ETA funds support the States in developing the statistical resources for the One-Stop Career Centers. The NASS funds support data collection services provided by the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture. The SAMHSA funds are provided to States to implement the minimum data standards developed by the Mental Health Statistics Improvement Program, and to develop an assessment of their needs for substance abuse treatment and prevention services under the block grant program. In all cases, the cooperation of the States is essential to the production of Federal data.

Based on the information shown in the Appendix, the agencies reported that they expect to purchase an estimated $512 million in statistical services from the private sector during FY 1997. Of that total, approximately $335 million in purchases from the private sector are made by the following seven agencies: NIH ($91.1 million), NCES ($72 million), CDC and NCHS ($63.2 million total), NSF ($49.9 million), AHCPR ($29.8 million), and SAMHSA ($28.9 million). The private sector provides a variety of services, such as survey design, data collection and processing, analysis, program evaluation, preparation of reports, data dissemination, computer services, and methodological research and development.

The Appendix presents estimates (rounded to the nearest $100,000) of direct funding, reimbursements, and purchases for FY 1997, as reported by each of the agencies covered in this report.

CHAPTER 2: Programs and Program Changes

This chapter presents brief descriptions of the statistical activities of the agencies covered in this report. The chapter highlights program changes for Federal statistical activities for FY 1997 as proposed in the President's budget. Hence, the focus is not on base program activities that continue to be supported by the budget request, but rather on new activities, improvements or reductions in the existing base programs, or any other important changes that affect an agency's statistical program.

For purposes of this discussion, the statistical programs are divided into the following categories: Health and Safety Statistics; Social and Demographic Statistics; Statistics on Natural Resources, Energy, and the Environment; and Economic Statistics.

Health and Safety Statistics


The principal agency that produces general-purpose health data is the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) in the CDC. NCHS is responsible for the collection, analysis, and dissemination of statistics on the nature and extent of the health, illness, and disability of the U.S. population; the impact of illness and disability on the economy; the effects of environmental, social, and other health hazards; the use of health care services; health resources; family formation, growth, and dissolution; and vital events (births, deaths, marriages, and divorces). CDC also provides data on morbidity, infectious and chronic diseases, occupational diseases and injuries, and vaccine efficacy.

The statistical activities of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) support the design and implementation of epidemiological studies, clinical trials, biomedical research, and laboratory investigations conducted by the various institutes. The NIH also supports data collections on health and health-related topics by Federal agencies, industry, State and local governments, and private nonprofit organizations.

The Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (AHCPR) collects, analyzes, and disseminates data on health care use and expenditures, and supports studies on the outcomes of medical treatment and health services. The AHCPR and NCHS are jointly responsible for the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, which produces annual national estimates for a variety of measures related to health status, health insurance coverage, health care use, and expenditures and sources of payment for health services.

The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) collects, maintains, analyzes, and disseminates information relating to serious diseases, mortality, and human exposure to toxic or hazardous substances, and establishes registries necessary for long-term followup or specific scientific studies.

The Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) collects administrative data associated with its oversight of the Medicare and Medicaid programs, and also studies the quality of care delivered by those programs.

The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) collects data about general health services, the health professions workforce, and resource issues relating to access, equity, quality, and cost of care. HRSA also maintains the scientific registry for organ transplants.

The Indian Health Service (IHS) collects information regarding the status of the health care delivery program for American Indians and Alaska Natives.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) provides information on health problems related to the use and abuse of drugs and alcohol, and the mental health condition of the population.

The Department of Energy's Office of Environment, Safety, and Health (ES&H) conducts epidemiological studies of the health effects of exposure to radiation and other hazardous substances.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:


Statistics on safety are produced by the following agencies:

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) collects and reports data on the occurrence of work related injuries and illnesses.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) maintains a national injury and illness recordkeeping system based upon employer records, which is used to determine the cases that are included in the annual BLS occupational safety and health survey.

The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) collects current information on accidents, injuries, and illnesses in the mining industry, including mine, victim, and equipment characteristics, as well as causal information. This information is coded, computerized, and analyzed on a daily basis to provide current accident, injury, and illness information to MSHA's inspectorate, engineering staff, and education and training staff.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) conducts data collection, analysis, and dissemination activities on consumer product-related hazards and potential hazards. As part of its statistical programs, CPSC maintains the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS), which provides national consumer product-related injury statistics based on the reporting of a sample of hospital emergency rooms.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

Social and Demographic Statistics

Periodic Demographic Statistics

FY 1997 is the pivotal year in the decennial census cycle. Activities will shift from testing and refining to the initial steps toward conducting the 2000 census.

The Continuous Measurement (CM) program at the Census Bureau is being developed to provide nationally comparable and community-based data on an annual basis. The program includes the design and implementation of the American Community Survey (ACS) as well as the production of small area estimates by combining the ACS data with data from administrative records.

The Intercensal Demographic Estimates program at the Census Bureau develops updated population estimates in years between decennial censuses for states, counties, metropolitan areas, and urban places for use in planning and funding services such as transportation and health care.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

Current Demographic Statistics

The following agencies sponsor data collections and studies that produce current demographic statistics or provide information about special population groups in support of policy analysis, policy research, and program planning and evaluation:

The Census Bureau's current demographic statistics program provides information on the number, geographic distribution, and social and economic characteristics of the population, and supports tests of new approaches and concepts for demographic surveys.

The Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC) has responsibility in the Department of Defense for collecting and integrating manpower and personnel data to support department-wide studies, analysis, research, and reporting requirements.

The Directorate for Information Operations and Reports (DIOR), in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, has the responsibility for collecting data on active duty military personnel casualties, civilian manpower, and worldwide active duty military and civilian personnel employment.

The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) collects information for the evaluation of its programs for children and youth, such as Headstart, Job Opportunities and Basic Skills, Aid to Families with Dependent Children, child support enforcement, adoption assistance, foster care, child care, and child abuse programs.

The statistical activities of the Administration on Aging (AoA) are conducted in support of the research, analysis, and evaluation of programs to meet the needs of the elderly population.

The Food and Consumer Service (FCS) conducts surveys, program evaluations, and studies to evaluate the Food Stamp, Child Nutrition, and other food assistance programs which it administers.

The Agricultural Research Service (ARS) conducts the nationwide food consumption surveys that monitor and assess food consumption and related behavior of the U.S. population and that provide information for food and nutrition-related programs and public policy decisions.

The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (OASPE) funds studies on policy issues related to programs in HHS.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) collects, tabulates, and publishes data on the Old-Age and Survivors and Disability Insurance (OASDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) programs and their beneficiary populations. The SSA also performs actuarial and demographic research to assess the impact of program changes or alternatives.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) statistical program provides data on the volume, characteristics, financing, price, and suitability of housing in the United States.

The statistical programs of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) focus on providing estimates of the veteran population, including socioeconomic data; on analyses of patient use of VA health care; on the medical care provided to veterans in VA medical centers, nursing homes, domiciliaries and outpatient clinics; and on medical research.

The Agency for International Development (AID) collects and analyzes data on population and family planning to assist developing countries in planning and evaluating population programs and programs for socioeconomic development.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) collects data from public and private employers and labor organizations about the composition of their workforces by sex and by racial and ethnic categories. These data are used to carry out EEOC's enforcement activities under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

The National Science Foundation's (NSF) Division of Science Resources Studies statistical program comprises surveys that measure the magnitude and characteristics of the domestic and international resources devoted to science, engineering, and technology.

The NSF also provides funding in support of social science research and studies, such as the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, the General Social Survey, and the National Election Studies.

The Office of Energy Research (OER), containing the former Office of Science, Education, and Technology Information (OSETI), provides information on degree attainment in science and engineering, and forecasts the availability of trained persons in the fields of science necessary for research and development in the energy area.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

Crime and Justice Statistics

Statistics related to crime and justice are collected by the following agencies within the Department of Justice:

The Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) collects, analyzes, publishes, and disseminates statistical information on crime, criminal offenders, victims of crime, and the operations of justice systems at all levels of government and internationally.

The Bureau of Prisons (BOP) prepares projections of the prison population and conducts studies on such topics as recidivism, inmate programs, inmate misconduct, inmate classification, and institutional social climate.

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) produces data on Federal drug law enforcement.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) produces statistics on Federal criminal offenses reported to the police.

The Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) produces and analyzes data on immigrants, refugees, temporary visitors (nonimmigrants), naturalizations, and apprehension and removal of illegal aliens.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

Education Statistics

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) in the Department of Education collects, analyzes, and publishes statistics on education in the United States; conducts studies on international comparisons of education statistics; and provides leadership in developing and promoting the use of standardized terminology and definitions for the collection of those statistics.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

Transportation Statistics

The following agencies provide statistics on transportation:

The Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) compiles, analyzes, and makes accessible information on the Nation's transportation systems; collects information on intermodal transportation and other areas as needed; and enhances the quality and effectiveness of DOT's statistical programs through research, development of guidelines, and promotion of improvements in data acquisition and use.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) collects data on aviation safety.

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) collects, analyzes, and disseminates data on the Nation's highway system, financing, travel, fuel consumption, extent of the highway system, vehicle registrations, drivers licenses, and personal travel characteristics.

The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) collects and disseminates public mass transportation financial and operating data.

The Maritime Administration (MARAD) maintains data bases on foreign trade, vessels, port facilities, shipbuilding and repair, equipment owned by American steamship and container leasing companies, and maritime employment.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) collect information on motor vehicle-related accidents and fatalities and highway safety.

The Office of the Secretary of Transportation (OST) collects, analyzes, and publishes data in support of the Department's programs and transportation policy decision making.

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) collects data on railroad traffic, accidents, and grade crossings.

The Research and Special Programs Administration (RSPA) collects data to monitor hazardous materials shipments.

The United States Travel and Tourism Administration (USTTA), Department of Commerce, provided data on international travel markets; traveler characteristics, motivations, destinations, and spending patterns; and projections of future visitors to the United States. In FY 1996 the USTTA was abolished; some of its functions were transferred to the International Trade Administration (ITA) in the Department of Commerce.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

Statistics on Natural Resources,
Energy, and the Environment


The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) monitors the quality of the air; the quality of drinking, surface and ground water; ecosystem status; and the introduction of toxic or hazardous substances into the environment. It conducts research and studies to provide baseline data and to evaluate and support environmental monitoring systems.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) gathers worldwide environmental data about the ocean, earth, air, space, and sun and their interactions to describe and predict the state of the physical environment. The NOAA National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service and the National Climate Data Center maintain archives and environmental data bases that support statistical analyses and research throughout the Federal Government and the academic community. These include crop type and crop yield analyses for the Department of Agriculture; and climatic, atmospheric, and environmental data for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the Department of Defense.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) collects remote-sensed data to support climate research and to describe and measure the energy and environmental phenomena that may contribute to climate variation and change.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) through its mapping program acquires and maintains basic data to support digital cartography throughout the Federal Government (e.g., Geographic Information Systems and geographic support for surveys). The Water Resources Division in the USGS maintains the National Water Resources Research and Information System and the National Water-Quality Assessment Program. The USGS collects, analyzes, interprets, and makes available information on the quantity, quality, and location of the Nation's ground and surface waters. In cooperation with the States, academia, and other Federal agencies, the USGS administers the National Trends Network for monitoring acid precipitation chemistry in the United States.

No major program changes are planned for FY 1997.

Energy and Minerals

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) collects and disseminates data on energy reserves, production, consumption, distribution, prices, and technology. Coverage of EIA's programs includes data on coal, petroleum, gas, electric, and nuclear energy.

The Minerals Management Service (MMS) collects data on off-shore oil, gas, and minerals as part of its responsibility for management of both the Outer Continental Shelf Lands and the Royalty Management Programs. The MMS is responsible for resource evaluation and classification, lease management activities, and the collection of revenues from minerals leasing.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) maintains the Mineral Resource Data System data base, which contains information on the location and geologic occurrence of minerals and mineral commodities. The USGS also has two computer-based information systems of onshore oil and gas resources to aid in resource assessment studies. One contains information on the size of oil and gas pools and fields, their year of discovery, and their rate of production; the other has records on individual wells. The National Coal Resources Data System contains areal or regional point-source information on U.S. coal resources.

A major program change in FY 1996 was the transfer of the minerals information function of the Bureau of Mines to USGS. This function provides for the collection, analysis, and dissemination of information on mineral resources and production, consumption, and recycling for virtually every commercially important nonfuel mineral material.

No major program changes are planned for FY 1997.

Soil, Forest, Fish, Wildlife, and Public Lands

The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) conducts soil surveys and maintains and updates a national soils data base containing physical land facts. The NRCS also administers a Snow Survey program for making water supply forecasts to manage seasonal use of water for irrigation, flood control, fish and wildlife, recreation, power generation, municipal and industrial water supply, and water quality management.

The Forest Service (FS) conducts renewable resource inventories of forest lands and collects statistics on forest products. These data are used to identify trends in the extent, condition, ownership, quantity and quality of timber, and other forest resources.

The statistical activities of the National Biological Survey (NBS) include research and monitoring of trends in contaminant residue levels in birds and fish by geographic location. The NBS annual bird banding program is conducted to determine the distribution, mortality, and survival of migratory game and nongame species. Data from NBS' annual breeding bird survey are used to identify species whose populations are declining and which may eventually become candidates for listing under the Endangered Species Act.

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) in NOAA collects and publishes data on the volume and value of commercial fish and shellfish landings; the catch by recreational fishermen; employment of people and craft in the fisheries; number of recreational fishermen; production of manufactured fishery products; and fishery prices.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) conducts annual surveys to monitor the waterfowl, dove, and woodcock populations, and to evaluate waterfowl harvests.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

Economic Statistics

Periodic Economic Statistics

The Census Bureau conducts several periodic censuses every five years covering the years ending in 2 and 7. The Economic Censuses include censuses of manufacturing and mineral industries, construction industries, retail and wholesale trade, service industries, and transportation. They also provide statistics on businesses owned by minorities and women and companies operating at multiple locations. The Census of Governments collects State and local data on public finance, public employment, and governmental organization.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

Current Economic Statistics

The current economic statistics program of the Census Bureau provides information on retail and wholesale trade and selected service industries; construction activity such as housing permits and starts, the value of new construction, residential alterations and repairs, and quarterly price indexes for new, single-family houses; quantity and value of industrial output; foreign trade; and State and local government activities.

The International Trade Administration (ITA) in the Department of Commerce uses data on imports, exports, production, prices, foreign direct investment in the United States, and other economic data to analyze domestic and foreign market situations. In FY 1996, some of the functions of the U.S. Travel and Tourism Administration (USTTA) were transferred to the Office of Research in Tourism Industries in ITA.

The Economics and Statistics Administration (ESA), in the Department of Commerce, provides congressionally mandated studies such as the annual assessment of foreign direct investment in the United States. The ESA makes current economic statistics available through an electronic dissemination system known as STAT USA that was formerly operated by the Office of Business Analysis (OBA) in the Department of Commerce.

The Army Corps of Engineers in the Department of Defense collects and publishes statistical data on waterborne commerce and vessel operations on waterways, ports, and harbors of the United States, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The Directorate for Information Operations and Reports (DIOR), in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, collects Department of Defense contract information in support of national economic indicators and the Small Business Competitiveness Demonstration Program.

The U.S. Customs Service verifies tariff and trade data, which are tabulated, analyzed, and disseminated by the Census Bureau.

The Small Business Administration (SBA) maintains a small business data base and conducts economic and statistical research into matters affecting small businesses.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

National Accounts

The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) is responsible for the preparation, development, and interpretation of the national income and product accounts, summarized by the Gross Domestic Product (GDP); the wealth accounts, which show the business and other components of national wealth; the input-output accounts, which trace the interrelationships among industrial markets; personal income and related economic series by geographic area; and the U.S. balance of payments accounts and associated foreign investment accounts. The BEA's work also encompasses the preparation and analysis of other measures of business activity, including various tools for forecasting economic developments.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

Statistics of Income

The Statistics of Income (SOI) Division in the Internal Revenue Service provides annual income, financial, and tax data based on individual and corporate tax returns and returns filed by tax-exempt organizations. The SOI also provides periodic data based on other returns, such as those filed by estates, as well as in-depth analyses of various tax-related computations, including those for the foreign tax credit and for gain or loss from sales of capital assets.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

Labor Statistics

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) produces statistics on employment and unemployment; consumer expenditures; prices and living conditions; wages and employee benefits; industrial relations activities; productivity and technological changes in U.S. industries; projections of economic growth, the labor force, and employment by industry and occupation; and occupational injuries and illnesses.

The statistical activities of the Employment Standards Administration (ESA), in the Department of Labor, support surveys of occupational wages in selected industries.

The statistical activities of the Employment and Training Administration (ETA) support the collection and dissemination of local, State, and national occupational, wage, and other labor market information.

The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Policy (OASP), in the Department of Labor, conducts the annual National Agricultural Workers Survey (NAWS) that provides data on wage and migration history, type of crops worked, unemployment, benefits, housing, health care, and use of public programs.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

Agriculture Statistics

Several agencies in the Department of Agriculture produce most of the data on agricultural activity:

The National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) collects, summarizes, analyzes, and publishes agricultural production and marketing data on a wide range of items including: number of farms and land in farms; acreage, yield, production, and stocks of grains, hay, oilseeds, cotton, potatoes, tobacco, fruits, selected vegetables, floriculture, and selected specialty crops; inventories and production of hogs, cattle, sheep and wool, goats and mohair, mink, catfish, trout, poultry, eggs, and dairy products; prices received by farmers for products, prices paid for commodities and services, and related indexes; cold storage supplies; agricultural chemical use; and related areas of the agricultural economy. Estimates for approximately 120 crops and 45 livestock items are published in over 400 reports each year.

In FY 1997, the Census of Agriculture will be transferred from the Bureau of the Census in the Department of Commerce to NASS to consolidate general purpose agricultural statistics activities. The Census of Agriculture is conducted every five years to collect information on the number and size of farms; characteristics of farm operations and irrigation practices; land use; production expenses; value of land, buildings, and farm products; acreage of major crops; and inventory of livestock and poultry.

The statistical work of the Economic Research Service (ERS) includes research, situation and outlook analysis, and development of economic and statistical indicators in four areas--commercial agriculture, food and consumer economics, natural resources and environment, and rural economy.

The Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) maintains a worldwide agricultural market intelligence and commodity reporting service to gather information on world agricultural production and trade. FAS analyzes this information to assess the foreign supply and demand conditions in order to provide estimates of the current situation and to forecast the export potential for U.S. agricultural commodities. The FAS program serves as the analytical foundation for USDA's export programs and is an important factor in trade policy efforts.

Major program changes and new activities planned for FY 1997 are as follows:

CHAPTER 3: Long-Range Plans

This chapter describes selected ongoing and new interagency initiatives to improve the performance of Federal statistical programs.

Statistical Agency Heads Council

In the fall of 1988, OMB organized the Federal Council of Statistical Agency Heads. This policy-level group was established to enable OMB to obtain more direct participation from the agencies in planning and coordinating Federal statistical activities. In 1995, the Congress provided in the Paperwork Reduction Act reauthorization (44 U.S.C. 3504(e)(8)) an explicit legislative base for this group when it directed OMB to establish the Interagency Council on Statistical Policy. The members of this council currently include the heads of the principal statistical agencies, plus the heads of the statistical units in the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Science Foundation, the Internal Revenue Service, and the Social Security Administration. Since the members of the council have management responsibility for statistical programs in their respective agencies, their advice and cooperation are essential for effective implementation of OMB statistical policy decisions and for planning improvements in Federal statistical programs.

The council is a vehicle for coordinating statistical work, particularly when activities and issues overlap and/or cut across agencies; for exchanging information about agency programs and activities; and for providing advice and counsel to OMB in statistical matters. During 1996, agenda topics included developing an administrative order on confidentiality and legislation to permit sharing of data for statistical purposes, improving access to the products of the Federal statistical system through one-stop shopping for data users and economic and social statistics briefing rooms on the White House home page, documenting and archiving statistical data in an electronic age, alternatives for collecting with greater frequency small area data historically gathered in the decennial census long form, and facilitating personnel movement and training opportunities for employees of the Federal statistical system.

Sharing of Statistical Information

Congress has recognized that a confidential relationship between statistical agencies and their respondents is essential for effective statistical programs. However, the specific statutory formulas devised to implement this principle in different agencies have created difficult barriers to effective working relationships among these agencies. The development of mechanisms to establish a uniform confidentiality policy that substantially eliminates the risks associated with sharing confidential data will permit significant improvements in data used for both public and private decisions without the current duplication of effort and without compromising public confidence in the integrity and security of the information they report to the Federal government.

Initiatives of the Statistical Policy Office to enhance public confidence in the stewardship of sensitive data in Federal statistical programs and to permit limited sharing of confidential data for exclusively statistical purposes received a substantial impetus in the 1995 reauthorization of the Paperwork Reduction Act. The Act strongly endorses the principles embodied in statistical confidentiality pledges and charges OMB to promote sharing of data for statistical purposes within a strong confidentiality framework.

On January 29, 1996, OMB published in the Federal Register a notice (61 FR 2876-79) seeking public comment on a proposed Order that would clarify, and make consistent, government policy protecting the privacy and confidentiality interests of individuals or organizations who provide data for any Federal statistical program. The Order would assure respondents who supply statistical information that their responses would be held in confidence and would not be used against them in any government action. It also aims to resolve a number of ambiguities in existing law and to give additional weight and stature to policies that statistical agencies have pursued for decades. Public comments submitted in response to the notice widely supported the principle of functional separation and suggested several refinements to make the order more effective. These comments will be taken into consideration as the final Order is developed.

A much longer term statutory initiative also reached a significant milestone when a draft bill entitled the "Statistical Confidentiality Act" was transmitted to the Congress in April 1996. The bill follows principles consistent with the proposed Order, but also addresses statutory changes needed to provide uniform confidentiality protection across a set of eight major statistical agencies. These changes would permit the eight agencies to manage information in many important respects as if they were part of a single statistical agency. "The Statistical Confidentiality Act" (H.R. 3924) was introduced on a bipartisan basis on July 31, 1996, and has been referred to the House Committee on Government Reform and Oversight.

A companion legislative proposal would make complementary changes to the "Statistical Use" section of the Internal Revenue Code. These changes would represent the first major revision of these policies in 20 years and would reduce the amount of sensitive tax information that will change hands to support statistical programs while substantially increasing the effectiveness of that support. This objective would be achieved by carefully defining statistical needs and taking advantage of the efficiencies that can be achieved by modern sampling methods. The bill is expected to be introduced in the current session of Congress.

One-Stop Shopping for Federal Statistical Data

It is sometimes difficult for the general public, and even frequent data users such as social science researchers, to know about and to access the extensive array of statistical information produced by the decentralized Federal statistical system. Recognizing this difficulty, statistical agencies have, for the most part, made tremendous progress in improving access to their data and data bases through the Internet, and, in particular, the World Wide Web (WWW). Data users accessing information from one Federal agency may even find out about related statistics available from another agency, as a result of cross-agency links that some agencies are providing. Nevertheless, a coordinated interagency approach is needed to provide easy access to all Federal statistics.

Under the auspices of the Interagency Council on Statistical Policy, OMB formed a Task Force on One-Stop Service for Federal Statistical Data Users to build on the agencies' WWW innovations. The goal of the group is to examine the Federal Government's various systems for disseminating statistical data and to provide recommendations to OMB on the structure and implementation of a new one-stop shopping mechanism for Federal data users. The charge to the Task Force includes: (1) identifying the major statistical series to be incorporated initially into the One-Stop Shopping mechanism; (2) identifying and developing new concepts, structures, and methodologies to facilitate the dissemination of Federal statistical data; (3) developing and testing a mechanism to provide one-stop shopping to Federal data users; (4) planning the implementation of the new one-stop shopping mechanism; and (5) ensuring that there is ample opportunity for widespread public participation of stakeholders in the development process. The Task Force plans to launch a preliminary service on the Internet in the Fall of 1996.

A preview of one-stop shopping became available to the American public in May 1996 with the introduction of the Federal Statistics Briefing Rooms on the White House home page. The briefing rooms, at /fsbr, currently comprise the Economic Statistics Briefing Room and the Social Statistics Briefing Room. They present the most recent releases of key Federal economic and social indicators organized not by agency, but by themes including output, income, employment, production, money, prices, transportation, international statistics, crime, demographics, education, and health. Each theme incorporates key data series on a single World Wide Web page that, in turn, provides hyperlinks to WWW pages at the source agencies' web sites. Included in each theme are the most current data, graphic displays of the series over time, brief phrases highlighting the trends or noteworthy aspects of the current release, and the name of the agency that produced the data.

By providing key indicators produced by the statistical agencies through the White House home page on the Internet, the Federal Statistics Briefing Rooms make Federal statistics much more accessible to average Americans. The new service gives Americans quick, easy access to current economic and social data. It is a prime example of Federal agencies working together to improve service for their customers.

2000 Decennial Census Planning

Efforts to reengineer the 2000 decennial census have been driven by two major concerns about which there is general agreement: first, that traditional counting methods--which are expensive and have been only marginally effective in recent censuses--have limited potential to improve further the process for a complete enumeration of the United States; and second, that the cost of conducting decennial censuses has increased dramatically in the past few decades. Finding new ways to deal effectively with both concerns has been the motivating force in reengineering the 2000 decennial census. The Statistical Policy Office is working in cooperation with the Department of Commerce and others at OMB to evaluate the results of research and testing and to identify new methodologies that will reduce both the differentials in coverage and the cost of conducting the census.

On February 28, 1996, the Census Bureau "rolled out" its plans for making fundamental changes in methods to be used in the 2000 decennial census. Four key elements of the plan were highlighted: (1) fostering partnerships with local, tribal, State, U.S. Postal Service, and private sector officials to capitalize on their knowledge and experience; (2) simplifying the census forms to increase mail response and thereby reduce costs; (3)using technology to ensure more effective processing of the new forms that are easier to complete; and (4) employing a greater array of statistical methods to enumerate the most difficult to find nonrespondents and to ensure the quality of all responses and followup work, thereby reducing costs and increasing the accuracy of the 2000 census.

The FY 1997 budget proposes funding to support activities that are critical to achieving the new plan for the 2000 census. The Census Bureau will test refinements in statistical procedures to address concerns identified in the 1995 Census Test. To find "best in class" partners, partnership agreements will be established with local, tribal, State, Federal, and private sector officials. Responses to alternative question wording, sequencing, and presentation formats will be evaluated; the results will be used to assess the possible impact on data quality of changes in the standards used to classify data on race and ethnicity. These activities are part of the content determination process for the 2000 census. In April 1997, the topics for the 2000 census questionnaire will be submitted to the Congress. The Census Bureau also will begin the process of acquiring the computer hardware and developing the computer software needed to support its technological objectives. Development of field procedures and address list improvement operations will take place in preparation for the full scale "dress rehearsal" of the 2000 census in 1998.

The Census Bureau also will continue its work on the Master Address File (MAF) and the development of partnerships with State, local, and tribal governments under which they can provide current address information and review the address information known to the Census Bureau; more than 5,000 governments have responded already. Work will continue on the task of developing an appeals process under which OMB can resolve situations on which the Census Bureau and participating governments fail to agree, as required by Public Law 103-430.

American Community Survey

At the present time, comparable local area data on the size and characteristics of the U.S. population are available only once every ten years. While national level data for certain population characteristics are available on an annual basis, most detailed data for States and localities are provided by the decennial census long form. The American Community Survey (ACS) would provide demographic and housing data annually for geographic areas with populations greater than 250,000 and would provide annually updated averages, based on the accumulation of data over a period of years, for rural areas, census tracts, and block groups.

In FY 1996, the Census Bureau conducted a test of the ACS in four sites. The test used three modes of data collection (mail, computer assisted telephone interviews, and computer assisted personal interviews). During FY 1997, the Census Bureau plans to continue the ACS in the current sites and begin the ACS in four new sites. This expansion of the test will provide experience for conducting the ACS in hard-to-enumerate areas, and in areas that are sparsely populated. The Census Bureau also plans to develop and evaluate procedures for conducting the ACS for special populations such as persons in prisons, hospitals, and nursing homes. In FY 1998, plans are to expand the ACS to the 10 to 12 largest cities and make final preparations for launching the survey nationally in 1999.

Economic Statistics Initiative

The Economic Statistics Initiative seeks to improve the quality of statistics in rapidly changing areas of the economy where accurate information is most needed. Implementation of the initiative will result in a fundamental reorientation of the Federal statistical system to support better informed national debate on the economic challenges facing the United States.

As part of this effort, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) conducted a strategic review of the Nation's economic accounts beginning in late 1994. Based on this review of the performance of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and its other economic accounts data, BEA developed a draft plan for maintaining and improving the accounts. In April 1995, after leading economic data users reviewed the plan, BEA completed the Five Year Mid-Decade Strategic Plan for maintaining and improving its national, regional, and international accounts. The plan emphasizes updated measures of output and prices; more comprehensive and accurate measures of investment, saving, and wealth; and improved coverage of international trade and finance.

To move forward on the most urgent priorities, BEA reallocated resources from existing programs. In FY 1995, BEA transferred the production of the Leading Economic Indicators to a private organization, the Conference Board. In FY 1996, BEA moved to scale back its work in the areas of foreign direct investment, pollution abatement and control expenditures, and regional projections.

As resources were freed up, they were used to help fund the first steps in implementing BEA's plan, including:

In subsequent years, activities that would build upon this work include extending the quality adjustment of output and prices to additional "high-tech" products and difficult-to-measure services; incorporating new information on services and other key industries; incorporating improved estimates of households, nonprofit institutions, and governments into the accounts; integrating the national income and product accounts with the flow-of-funds accounts; expanding the detail collected on affiliated services by type for foreign direct investment in the United States; incorporating into the balance of payments accounts the new information now being developed on portfolio investments and derivative financial instruments; and, if it proves feasible, resuming work on the Integrated Economic and Environmental Satellite Accounts.

Revision of the Consumer Price Index

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is the principal source of information concerning trends in consumer prices and inflation in the United States. The measure is used extensively for economic analysis and policy formulation in both the public and private sectors, to escalate contract costs among individuals and organizations, and to index government payments and receipts.

In order to maintain the relevance of the CPI, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) undertakes a comprehensive updating of the index approximately every 10 years. The revision provides opportunities to reflect changes in the geographic distribution of the population and in consumers' buying habits, to incorporate improvements in technology and index methodology, and to redesign survey questionnaires and computer systems to make the index a more accurate and reliable reflection of economic conditions. An updated CPI, based upon the 1990 distribution of the U.S. urban population and the 1993-1995 pattern of consumer expenditures, will be introduced in January 1998. The BLS budget for FY 1997 requests funding for work on the revision scheduled for completion in 2000.

Beginning in September 1996, 21 areas selected for inclusion in the revised 1998 CPI design will begin to have outlet and item samples initiated for pricing, based upon information provided by consumers on where they shopped for various goods and services. In early 1997, 15 additional areas selected for the revised CPI design will begin to have their items and outlet samples initiated for pricing. These 36 areas will be incorporated in the CPI monthly estimate of price change when the revised market basket based on 1993-1995 expenditure patterns is introduced for January 1998. Early in the summer of 1997, BLS will begin the listing and screening of housing units in order to select representative samples of rental units in each of the 84 areas that constitute the revised CPI area design. This labor-intensive activity will continue through 1998.

As part of its continuing effort to improve the accuracy of the CPI, BLS also began in 1996 to implement new collection procedures and a new classification structure for estimating price changes in the Hospital and Related Services Component of the CPI. The new procedures will require the reselection of items that are sampled in each hospital that is currently priced for the CPI. The principal change being implemented is the sampling of bills paid by patients for patterns of treatments rather than sampling of prices of individual component goods and services. These improvements will result in a revised Hospital and Related Services expenditure class that will be introduced into the CPI with the release of the January 1997 CPI.

In March 1996, BLS announced that it would implement major changes in procedures for rotating in new item and outlet samples, and also in the treatment of how substitutions of noncomparable items are incorporated into the index. These improvements in procedures, which became fully effective in July 1996, will eliminate the systematic upward bias (frequently called formula bias) stemming from the way price changes in the CPI are calculated at the lowest level of detail.

Redesign of the Occupational
Compensation Survey Program

The surveys underlying the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Employment Cost Index (ECI) program and the Occupational Compensation Survey Program (which includes the locality pay surveys) are being redesigned into an integrated system to improve the accuracy, enhance the efficiency, and strengthen the analytical content of the index and level measures produced. In addition, the ECI index and the current weighted cost per hour compensation data are being revised and extended to incorporate new methodologies that have become available since the index was first published in 1976.

The sample design for this integrated program will be a cluster design with a sample rotational pattern that is geographic within industry group rather than the current, solely industry-based pattern. New samples will be introduced annually across every industry in every covered area, mitigating the "catch up" effect of the industry rotation pattern present in the current Employer Cost for Employee Compensation series. This new design fully integrates the "birth sample" that is appended to the current design. The single sample will produce time-series for both indexes and average compensation levels for industry and occupational groups, thereby increasing the analytical potential of the data, including improved measures of trends, better integration of benefit costs and plan provisions, data on selected compensation-determining characteristics of individual workers, and broader regional and occupational coverage. Finally, the redesign project includes an evaluation of alternative index formulas and statistical procedures that make use of the most current data available from the Bureau's Current Employment and Occupational Employment Surveys, among other sources, to reflect better current trends in the composition of the labor services employed by the civilian economy, and provide improved estimates of the accuracy of these series. These planned enhancements to the Bureau's compensation statistics, some of which already are being tested, will be implemented as quickly as the available resources permit.

Improving and Integrating Agricultural Surveys

The National Agricultural Statistics Service's (NASS) strategic planning effort, begun in 1994, provides for a complete review of NASS' estimating and survey programs. This thorough review is designed to make maximum use of emerging technology and to increase data accuracy and usefulness by keeping up with a rapidly changing agricultural sector. NASS is working to provide annual statistics on production, inventory, and value at the State level for commodities comprising over 99 percent of the cash receipts from the sale of agricultural commodities, and annual data for an enlarged list of specialty commodities, such as the equine and horticultural industries. This broadened annual estimating and survey program will strengthen NASS' ability to respond to special needs as agriculture becomes more complex and diverse.

Authorizing legislation is currently pending that would transfer the authority to conduct the Census of Agriculture from the Bureau of the Census in the Department of Commerce to NASS in the Department of Agriculture. The transfer of the Census of Agriculture to NASS will complement and strengthen the existing statistics programs administered by NASS. The census will provide detailed information at the county level and information on specialty crops, data not available from NASS' existing programs. Integration of the two programs will eliminate the need to maintain two separate lists of agricultural entities, and will provide the unique opportunity to reduce duplicative data requests, ultimately resulting in less paperwork burden on farmers and assuring maximum usage of data collected. NASS' 45 field offices which serve all 50 States possess a wealth of local knowledge that will be invaluable in assisting with the census operations, including follow-up of any problem areas, and expediting the review and tabulation of the Census of Agriculture results.

Automating the Export Control System

The Census Bureau and the U.S. Customs Service have been working in partnership on the development of an Automated Export System (AES) that will simplify the export documentation process and streamline the Nation's export control system. In 1996, the first participant was approved for production filing, 20 companies were at various levels of testing, and 80 additional companies filed letters of intent to participate. Participation in the AES will be available through all vessel ports nationwide.

In FY 1997, export document filing under AES will be implemented for air and overland methods of transportation. In addition, programs will be prepared to incorporate filing of manifest data for air and overland shipments; and there will be extensive marketing, outreach, and educational sessions for the trade community.

Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics

During the Fall of 1994, the Chief Statistician at OMB collaborated with the leaders of six agencies to found the Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics. The Forum, which now has participants from across government as well as partners in private research organizations, fosters coordination, collaboration, and integration of collection and reporting of Federal data on child and family issues and conditions. The Forum's substantial agenda is carried out by three working groups that focus on (1) developing priorities for enhanced data collection, (2) improving the reporting of childhood indicators to the policy community and the general public, and (3) meeting the challenge of producing data on children at the State and local levels.

Over the past year, the Forum made considerable progress on a proposed report on indicators of child well-being, targeted for publication in early 1997. This report will feature selected indicators from a more comprehensive series of reports from the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (OASPE) at HHS. The Forum is instrumental in supporting the production of the HHS reports, the first of which was published in May 1996. These reports compile over 70 indicators of child well-being that have been produced in time series by the Federal statistical system. The Forum also created a guide to Federal experts on child and family statistics, organized by survey and by topic, and developed an Internet listserver on child and family data issues to facilitate communication among parties interested in child and family statistics. In addition, during 1996 the Forum developed strategies to address measurement issues related to marriage, divorce, and cohabitation, and those related to fatherhood and male fertility.

During the coming year, the Forum will review the relationship between the Federal statistical system and State and local consumers of data and will make recommendations for changes in the collection and dissemination of sub-national data. The Forum also will continue to define key issues in the collection of data on fathers and will produce a guide to the major gaps in data collection on issues of importance to children and families. In addition, the Forum will publish a set of issue briefs on key areas of concern that cross the domains of individual statistical agencies, such as early adolescence.

Improving and Integrating Health Surveys

In 1995, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) inaugurated a health data initiative and survey integration plan designed to respond to critical data gaps and emerging data needs. The major goals of the HHS Survey Integration Plan are to implement a more rational, systematic strategy for collection of data on key health issues facing HHS; fill a critical gap by producing details that underlie annual estimates of health care expenditures, insurance coverage, and employer-related insurance costs; continue to meet public health data needs now met through ongoing population and provider-based surveys within a framework that also allows for expansion to address currently unmet public health data needs; enhance the analytic capabilities of HHS surveys by allowing multiple HHS data collection efforts to be linked analytically through the use of common core questionnaires, common sampling frames, and common definitions and terms; reduce the overall burden imposed on survey respondents by HHS below what would have been required in independent surveys to meet the same data needs; and achieve efficiencies in sampling, data collection, questionnaire design, and survey operations, thereby allowing more of HHS' resources to be focused on meeting high priority data needs.

During FY 1996, HHS continued to make progress on the implementation of its plan for integrating and streamlining health surveys. Important steps have included the integration of the National Health Interview Survey and the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS), which was implemented in 1996. For FY 1997, data collection will be ongoing for all of the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey components, including the Household Survey, the MEPS Medical Provider Survey, the National Nursing Home Expenditure Survey, and the integrated MEPS Insurance Component that consists of a survey of employers and insurance carriers linked to MEPS household survey participants and a national employer health insurance survey selected from a list frame.

Further design efforts in FY 1997 will be directed to achieving the integration of HHS sponsored medical provider surveys, which include the MEPS Medical Provider Survey and the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey. On-going activities aimed at achieving the goal of full survey integration in 1998 between the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey and the Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey will also continue in FY 1997, with particular attention to survey instrument redesign, sample co-ordination, and development of composite estimation strategies. Another important step that is included in the FY 1997 plan is implementation of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES IV), which obtains data from detailed physical examinations, lab tests, and other clinical observations. New survey initiatives within HHS will be incorporated in the survey integration framework, to ensure that efficiencies in sampling, data collection, questionnaire design, and survey operations are achieved.

Economic Classification Policy Committee (ECPC)

During the past four years, the Economic Classification Policy Committee (ECPC), chartered by OMB to conduct a "fresh slate" examination of economic classifications for statistical purposes, has worked with Statistics Canada and Mexico's Instituto Nacional de Estadˇstica, Geografˇa e Inform tica (INEGI) to establish a North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) that is based on a production-oriented concept. The three countries have agreed to place special emphasis on developing classifications for service industries, new and emerging industries, and industries engaged in the production of advanced technologies. To the extent possible, NAICS will provide comparability with the United Nation's International Standard Industrial Classification system at the two-digit level.

In FY 1996, the three countries continued development of the NAICS structure. To reach decisions on the structure, the ECPC and OMB issued Federal Register notices on the proposed industry revisions (60 FR 38436-52, 61 FR 4524-78); on additional industry revisions and the coding system (61 FR 26558-668); and on the entire proposed industry structure, including those sectors not previously published, the NAICS hierarchy, and the coding system (61 FR 35384-515). The United States has begun preparation of the NAICS manuals, and key statistical agencies have began developing plans for implementation. The Census Bureau has incorporated NAICS in its planning for the 1997 Economic Censuses.

In early FY 1997, after reviewing the comments received from the public and the statistical agencies and consulting with Canada and Mexico, the ECPC will provide its final recommendations to OMB for NAICS. Current plans call for OMB to publish these recommendations in the Federal Register for comment, to review these comments, and then to publish its final decisions for NAICS prior to January 1, 1997. All Federal agencies that collect, analyze, or publish economic data at the establishment level are expected to utilize the new system.

During the remainder of FY 1997, the United States will continue implementation of the NAICS, including outreach activities with the statistical agencies of the United States and other countries, as well as completion of the NAICS Classification and Coding Manuals for the United States. A key FY 1997 activity will be the mailing of classification forms to employer firms to ensure inclusion of the firms in the correct industry for the 1997 Economic Censuses.

Occupational Classification Policy Committee

In 1994, OMB chartered the Standard Occupational Classification Revision Policy Committee (SOCRPC) to take a fresh look at the concepts, methodologies, procedures, and uses of occupational classifications for statistical purposes. The SOCRPC is charged with revising and modernizing the SOC and integrating the structure of the SOC and the Dictionary of Occupational Titles in time to incorporate the new SOC classifications in the 2000 decennial census. The revision is intended to produce a pragmatic occupational classification system that will support economic analysis, strengthen the ties between education and work force data, unify Federal agency occupational classification usage, and foster international comparability.

On February 28, 1995, OMB published a notice in the Federal Register (60 FR 10998-11002) announcing the SOC revision process and requesting public comment on the uses of occupational data, the purpose and scope of occupational classification, the principles underlying the current SOC, conceptual options for the new SOC, and the SOCRPC process. Based on those comments, the SOCRPC provided recommendations to OMB that were the subject of an October 5, 1995, Federal Register notice (60 FR 52284-86). This notice solicited: (1) public comment on the SOCRPC's recommendations to OMB on the purpose and scope of the new SOC, the principles underlying the new SOC, and the unified conceptual framework to use to guide the revision, and (2) proposals from the public for changes to the existing SOC at the detailed 4-digit level based on the principles and conceptual foundation presented in the notice.

During FY 1996, the SOCRPC established six work groups to review proposals and make recommendations to it for revision of the SOC. The work groups are organized by occupational cluster and include: Agriculture, Construction, Extractive, and Transportation Occupations; Managerial and Administrative Occupations; Mechanical and Production Occupations; Military Occupations; Natural Science, Law, Health, Education, and Arts Occupations; and Sales and Services Occupations. The SOCRPC will review the work group recommendations, approve or modify them, and compile its recommendations for publication in the Federal Register for comment. Based on these comments, it will formulate its final recommendations to OMB. The SOCRPC recommendations will be based on the principles and unified conceptual framework agreed upon after review of the comments to the October 1995 notice as well as proposals from the public and recommendations of the work groups.

OMB will publish the SOCRPC recommendations for public comment in the Federal Register in the summer of 1997 before making its final decisions for the 1997 SOC revision. Using public comment on the SOCRPC recommendations, OMB will make its final decisions for the 1997 SOC revision and publish them in the Federal Register in the fall of 1997. All Federal agencies that collect, analyze, or publish occupational data are expected to utilize the new system.

Metropolitan Areas 2000

OMB has issued definitions of metropolitan areas for use in collecting and publishing Federal statistics since 1950. The standards for defining metropolitan areas have been reviewed and modified several times since then, but the underlying concepts have remained essentially the same over the decades.

At the request of OMB, the Census Bureau has initiated a thorough review of the concepts and methods underlying the definitions of metropolitan and alternative statistical areas. A set of four studies was commissioned to address such issues as the usefulness of classifying the entire country and measures of integration that could be used in determining the size or extent of statistical areas. A report, including the papers produced by the four studies, was prepared to serve as background for the November 1995 Conference on New Approaches to Defining Metropolitan and Nonmetropolitan Areas. The conference was developed to present and discuss the findings of the four commissioned studies; it also featured reports on related area definition programs conducted by the Economic Research Service, the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the Bureau of the Census.

Efforts in FY 1997 will include refinement of definition approaches reported at the conference, as well as evaluation of comments received at the conference from representatives of government agencies and the public. Testing of alternative approaches with census data also will be initiated in 1997, and a report of early findings and solicitation of further comment will appear in a Federal Register notice. By the beginning of 1999, the competing approaches will have been fully evaluated, leading to the presentation of draft standards in the Federal Register in 1999. OMB will publish final standards before the 2000 census.

Classification of Data on Race and Ethnicity

OMB's Statistical Policy Directive No. 15, entitled "Race and Ethnic Standards for Federal Statistics and Administrative Reporting," provides standard classifications for record keeping, collection, and presentation of these data. The classifications, adopted in 1977, have come under increasing criticism by respondents and data users who feel that the classifications are becoming less useful in reflecting the Nation's diversity.

In response, OMB announced, in a June 1994 Federal Register notice (59 FR 29831-35), a review of Directive No. 15, solicited comments, and subsequently held four public hearings. OMB summarized the comments it received in a second Federal Register notice (60 FR 44674-93). This notice also proposed principles to be used in reaching a final decision on standards for the classification of data on race and ethnicity. A key challenge will be meeting the Federal Government's many needs for data on race and ethnicity, while at the same time providing categories and definitions that are readily understood and generally accepted by the public.

OMB established an Interagency Committee for the Review of Racial and Ethnic Standards to coordinate the review of Directive No. 15. A Research Working Group of the Interagency Committee identified several issues requiring research and testing, including multiracial response options; combining the race and Hispanic origin classifications; a combined race, Hispanic origin, and ancestry question; and new or renamed classifications. Several Federal agencies are conducting research on these issues.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) sponsored a Supplement on Race and Ethnicity to the May 1995 Current Population Survey (CPS). The Supplement tested the effect of having a multiracial category among the list of races, whether race and Hispanic origin should be asked as separate questions or in a combined question, and the terminology respondents preferred to use in identifying their racial and ethnic groups.

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) and the Office for Civil Rights in the Department of Education conducted a survey of 1,000 public schools in the spring of 1995 to see how schools currently collect, maintain, and report data on students' race and ethnicity, and on what State laws mandate or require school systems to do.

The National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health conducted cognitive interviews with multiracial and Hispanic women who had recently given birth to find out how they prefer to report their race and ethnicity, and where possible, to compare their answers with the race and ethnicity recorded on the birth certificates. Racial classifications on death certificates are being studied by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in a survey of funeral directors. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is using MEDLINE to conduct a literature search on racial and ethnic classifications in health studies. HHS is also developing an inventory of its minority health data bases and will examine how racial and ethnic categories are used.

The Census Bureau is using two major 1996 decennial census tests to study suggested changes to the race and ethnicity questions. The 1996 Race and Ethnic Targeted Test (RAETT), also known as the 1996 Census Survey, was mailed to 114,000 households in urban and rural areas of the country with different concentrations of racial and ethnic populations. The sample is thus expected to represent Whites, Blacks, American Indians, Alaska Natives, Asians, Pacific Islanders, Hispanics, and persons who identify with more than one race. The 1996 National Content Survey (NCS) was mailed to a nationally representative sample of 90,000 households.

The Census Bureau implemented an extensive program of cognitive research, focus groups, classroom experiments, and consultations with its Advisory committees, stakeholders, and an expert panel to develop the race and ethnicity questions included on the RAETT and the NCS. The seven experimental panels on the RAETT provide tests of: a multiracial category; check-more-than-one approaches to reporting as multiracial; alternative sequencing of the race and Hispanic origin questions; combined race, Hispanic origin, and ancestry questions; a combined category for American Indians and Alaska Natives with a write-in line for tribe; a Native Hawaiian category; and several alternative terminologies and formats. The NCS also includes panels that test a multiracial category, alternative sequencing, and alternative terminologies.

During the coming year, OMB in cooperation with the Interagency Committee will continue to review and evaluate the results of studies cited above. This review process is scheduled to be completed by mid-1997 so that changes, if any, in the racial and ethnic categories can be implemented in the 2000 census.

Definition of Poverty

In the spring of 1995, the National Academy of Sciences' (NAS) National Research Council released its panel report on the measurement of income and poverty, Measuring Poverty: A New Approach. The report recommends that the official U.S. poverty thresholds be changed to comprise a budget for the three basic categories of food, clothing, shelter (including utilities), and a small additional amount to allow for other needs, such as household supplies, personal care, and non-work related transportation.

Before considering any potential policy issues inherent in the definition of poverty, there are significant statistical issues that need to be addressed. These include the availability and reliability of the data required to implement the NAS recommendations; changing the primary vehicle for poverty data collection from the March supplement of the Current Population Survey (CPS) to the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP); the relatively small sample size of the Consumer Expenditure Survey that limits its applicability to the buying habits of persons in poverty; and the scope of data development work needed to implement the NAS recommendations for geographic adjustments, refining cost-of-housing indexes, and measuring medical expenditures.

In light of such issues, the Statistical Policy Office is planning a thorough review of available options before taking a position on revising the definition of poverty. To address the issues, OMB is forming a working group under the auspices of the Interagency Council on Statistical Policy. Plans for the working group include close coordination with the Census Bureau to develop additional experimental poverty series that incorporate relevant NAS recommendations. These alternative series would be issued to allow analysts to examine their utility and see how they behave prior to the development of recommendations by OMB.

Supporting the Customer Service Initiative

In 1993, OMB's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs launched three initiatives in support of Executive Order 12862, Setting Customer Service Standards, to facilitate the development, review, and operation of customer surveys--a resource manual, a "generic" clearance process to support customer survey research, and a graduate-level training program in customer survey methods. Since the inauguration of these activities, many Federal professionals have taken advantage of the training opportunities offered by the Joint Program in Survey Methodology, and the Resource Manual for Customer Surveys has become a standard reference that has been reproduced and distributed, in whole or in part, by many firms in the private sector.

The streamlined "generic" clearance process established in 1993 provided opportunities for public comment on broad classes of customer surveys. In the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Congress expanded the statutory requirements for public comment. Existing data collection programs approved under the streamlined process remain in force for their normal three-year term. It is anticipated that the experience gained during this three-year period will permit all agencies to meet fully the requirements of the new PRA when requests to extend or revise such programs are submitted for OMB review. The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs is developing guidance for agencies to use in complying with the 1995 Act.

Reducing Reporting Burden on Business

In 1996, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Census Bureau signed a Memorandum of Understanding regarding Joint Electronic Data Transmissions to the two agencies. This agreement will allow Census and BLS to prepare, initiate, and maintain joint electronic data interchange (EDI) reporting arrangements that permit interested businesses to transmit consolidated statistical information electronically for use by both agencies, and thereby satisfy multiple statistical reporting requirements. The joint EDI reporting program will reduce business reporting burden by limiting information requests and report preparations; reduce agency processing costs by providing data in carefully specified electronic formats; and improve published statistics by obtaining more timely, complete, and consistent information about major U.S. businesses.

In FY 1997 the Census Bureau and the BLS will continue development and begin implementation of joint EDI reporting. The two agencies are promoting this reporting option with large multi-unit establishments for reporting to Census' Monthly Retail Trade Survey and annual Company Organization Survey, and BLS' monthly Current Expenditures Survey and quarterly Multiple Worksite Report.


(In millions of dollars)

Sources of Funding Purchases
Department/Agency Direct
ARS 3.0 0.0 3.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
ERS 54.9 0.4 0.0 7.2 1.9 0.4 3.9
FAS 35.7 0.0 0.0 2.1 0.0 0.0 2.1
FCS 22.2 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 22.1 0.1
FS 9.9 0.4 -- 0.2 0.0 0.0 0.0
NASS 102.6 1.8 0.0 6.7 20.6 2.8 --
NRCS 106.3 2.9 0.0 2.6 0.0 0.0 0.0
BEA 48.6 -- 0.4 0.2 -- 0.1 1.7
Census 404.1 3.1 21.0 136.5 0.0 0.0 1.1
ESA 4.9 0.1 1.8 1.2 0.0 0.1 0.0
ITA 2.6 0.3 0.6 0.1 0.0 0.5 0.5
NOAA 49.3 0.1 4.3 2.4 2.0 3.0 0.0
USTTA 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
Corps Eng 4.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.5
DIOR 2.2 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
DMDC 3.3 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
NCES 91.9 0.0 0.0 0.6 2.4 72.0 8.9
EIA 66.1 0.0 0.0 7.0 0.0 20.0 0.0
ES&H 30.5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 5.7 20.1
OER 1.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
ACF 18.9 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.4 16.0 2.5
AHCPR 43.3 0.0 0.0 48.5 0.5 29.8 0.0
AoA 3.2 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 2.3 0.0
ATSDR 5.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 1.0 1.5 --
CDC 182.7 0.0 0.7 9.9 46.1 35.9 23.9
NCHS 88.5 0.0 0.7 16.2 14.8 27.3 22.9
HCFA 13.6 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 13.5 0.1
HRSA 9.6 0.0 0.0 0.2 0.0 0.0 0.1
IHS 2.8 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 --
NIH 322.6 0.0 0.0 -- -- 91.1 8.1
OASPE 20.0 0.0 0.0 7.3 0.0 22.6 4.7
SAMHSA 49.9 0.0 0.0 0.0 17.6 28.9 0.5
CP&D 0.1 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.1
Housing 1.5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
OFHEO 2.8 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
PD&R 26.5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 3.5 23.0
P&IH 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
BoM 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
FWS 7.3 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.3 0.0 2.8
MMS 1.5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
NBS 2.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
USGS 79.8 52.3 2.9 44.9 0.0 0.6 0.8
BJS 26.9 0.0 0.0 0.5 3.6 3.1 15.3
BoP 4.7 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
DEA 0.8 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
FBI 4.9 0.0 -- 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
INS 2.2 0.0 0.0 0.1 0.0 0.0 0.3
BLS 372.4 0.2 0.9 10.8 77.9 0.0 53.6
ESA 3.9 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.5 0.0 1.8
ETA 41.6 0.0 0.0 0.0 40.5 0.1 0.0
MSHA 2.3 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
OASP 0.8 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
OSHA 16.9 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 2.5 0.0
BTS 28.1 0.0 0.0 0.4 0.0 0.0 15.9
FAA 4.4 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 1.0 3.0
FHWA 32.7 0.0 0.0 0.2 9.9 15.6 6.4
FRA 1.5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 1.0 0.4
FTA 2.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 2.0 0.0
MARAD 1.6 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.3 0.2
NHTSA 26.7 0.0 0.0 0.0 6.0 15.2 0.0
OST 1.1 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.2 0.0
RSPA 3.2 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
Customs 8.2 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
IRS 35.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
SOI 26.8 -- 0.1 1.7 0.0 0.7 0.4
VETERANS AFFAIRS 58.2 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.2
AID 18.6 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
CPSC 5.5 0.0 0.0 0.9 0.1 1.0 0.0
EEOC 1.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 1.0 0.1
EPA 137.5 0.0 0.0 0.9 4.7 18.3 1.3
NASA 16.9 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
NSF 51.8 0.0 0.0 1.7 0.0 49.9 3.5
SBA 0.4 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.1 0.3
SSA 6.9 0.0 -- -- -- 0.0 0.0
TOTAL 2,754.6 61.6 36.5 310.8 250.7 511.7 231.2

Note: Components may not sum to totals because of rounding. The symbol "--" indicates that the amount reported by the agency was less than $50,000.

Glossary of Agency Abbreviations

ACF Administration for Children and Families (HHS)
AHCPR Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (HHS)
AID Agency for International Development
AoA Administration on Aging (HHS)
ARS Agricultural Research Service (Agriculture)
ATSDR Agency for Toxic Substance and Disease Registry (HHS)
BEA Bureau of Economic Analysis (Commerce)
BJS Bureau of Justice Statistics (Justice)
BLS Bureau of Labor Statistics (Labor)
BoM Bureau of Mines (Interior)
BOP Bureau of Prisons (Justice)
BTS Bureau of Transportation Statistics (Transportation)
CDC Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (HHS)
Census Bureau of the Census (Commerce)
Corps Eng Army Corps of Engineers (Defense)
CP&D Community Planning and Development (HUD)
CPSC Consumer Product Safety Commission
Customs United States Customs Service (Treasury)
DEA Drug Enforcement Administration (Justice)
DIOR Directorate for Information Operations and Reports (Defense)
DMDC Defense Manpower Data Center (Defense)
DoC Department of Commerce
DoD Department of Defense
DoE Department of Energy
DoL Department of Labor
DoT Department of Transportation
EEOC Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
EIA Energy Information Administration (Energy)
EPA Environmental Protection Agency
ERS Economic Research Service (Agriculture)
ESA Economics and Statistics Administration (Commerce)
ESA Employment Standards Administration (Labor)
ES&H Environment, Safety and Health (Energy)
ETA Employment and Training Administration (Labor)
FAA Federal Aviation Administration (Transportation)
FAS Foreign Agricultural Service (Agriculture)
FBI Federal Bureau of Investigation (Justice)
FCS Food and Consumer Service (Agriculture)
FHWA Federal Highway Administration (Transportation)
FRA Federal Railroad Administration (Transportation)
FS Forest Service (Agriculture)
FTA Federal Transit Administration (Transportation)
FWS United States Fish and Wildlife Service (Interior)
HCFA Health Care Financing Administration (HHS)
HHS Department of Health and Human Services
Housing Office of the Assistant Secretary for Housing (HUD)
HRSA Health Resources and Services Administration (HHS)
HUD Department of Housing and Urban Development
IHS Indian Health Service (HHS)
INS Immigration and Naturalization Service (Justice)
IRS Internal Revenue Service (Treasury)
ITA International Trade Administration (Commerce)
MARAD Maritime Administration (Transportation)
MMS Minerals Management Service (Interior)
MSHA Mine Safety and Health Administration (Labor)
NASA National Aeronautics and Space Administration
NASS National Agricultural Statistics Service (Agriculture)
NBSM National Biological Survey (Interior)
NCES National Center for Education Statistics (Education)
NCHSM National Center for Health Statistics (HHS)
NCI National Cancer Institute (HHS)
NEI National Eye Institute (HHS)
NHLBI National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (HHS)
NHTSA National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (Transportation)
NIA National Institute on Aging (HHS)
NIAAA National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (HHS)
NIAID National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (HHS)
NIAMSD National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Disease
NICHD National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (HHS)
NIDA National Institute on Drug Abuse (HHS)
NIDCD National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (HHS)
NIDDK National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (HHS)
NIDR National Institute of Dental Research (HHS)
NIEHS National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (HHS)
NIGMS National Institute of General Medical Sciences (HHS)
NIH National Institutes of Health (HHS)
NINDS National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (HHS)
NMFS National Marine Fisheries Service (Commerce)
NOAA National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Commerce)
NRCS Natural Resources Conservation Service (Agriculture)
NSF National Science Foundation
OASPE Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (HHS)
OD Office of the Director, NIH (HHS)
OER Office of Energy Research (Energy)
OFHEO Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (HUD)
OMB Office of Management and Budget (Executive Office of the President)
OSHA Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Labor)
OST Office of the Secretary of Transportation (Transportation)
PD&R Office of the Assistant Secretary for Policy Development and Research (HUD)
P&IH Office of Public and Indian Housing (HUD)
RSPA Research and Special Programs Administration(Transportation)
SAMHSA Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (HHS)
SBA Small Business Administration
SOI Statistics of Income Division (Treasury)
SSA Social Security Administration (HHS)
USDA United States Department of Agriculture
USGS United States Geological Survey (Interior)
USTTA United States Travel and Tourism Administration (Commerce)
VA Department of Veterans Affairs

Selected Federal Statistical World Wide Web Sites

(As of July 12, 1996}

Executive Office of the President (EOP)

Office of Management and Budget (OMB)

Federal Statistics Briefing Rooms

Department of Agriculture (USDA)
(Go To "What's New")

ERS--Economic Research Service

NASS--National Agricultural Statistics Service

Department of Commerce (DOC)

BEA--Bureau of Economic Analysis

Bureau of the Census

NOAA--National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Department of Defense

DMDC--Defense Manpower Data Center
(Go To "Search")
(Go To "Browse")
(Go To "Automated Information Systems")

Department of Education

NCES--National Center for Education Statistics
(Go To "Data and Surveys")

Department of Energy

EIA--Energy Information Administration

Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)

Office of the Secretary
(Go To "Consumer Information")
(Go To "Frequently Requested Subjects")
(Go To "Statistics")


(Go To "About HHS")
(Go To "HHS Agencies (Text)")

ACF--Administration for Children and Families

AHCPR--Agency for Health Care Policy and Research
(Go To "Data and Methods")

ATSDR--Agency for Toxic Substance and Disease Registry

AoA--Administration on Aging (Go To "National Aging Information Center")

CDC--Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
(Go To "Data and Statistics")

HCFA--Health Care Financing Administration
(Go To "Stats & Data")

HRSA--Health Resources and Services Administration (Go To "Overview and Programs")

IHS--Indian Health Service

NCHS--National Center for Health Statistics

NIH--National Institutes of Health
(Go To "Health Information" or "Scientific Resources")

SAMHSA--Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
(Go To "Statistical Information on Drug Abuse and Mental Health")

Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)

Department of the Interior

USGS--United States Geological Survey

Department of Justice

BJS--Bureau of Justice Statistics

BoP--Bureau of Prisons

FBI--Federal Bureau of Investigation
(Go To "FBI Uniform Crime Reports")

Department of Labor (DOL)
(Go To "Labor-Related Data")

BLS--Bureau of Labor Statistics

ETA--Employment and Training Administration
(Go To "Other ETA Related Sites")

MSHA--Mine Safety and Health Administration
(Go To "Mining Accident and Injury information")

OSHA--Occupational Safety and Health Administration
(Go To "Statistics & Data")

Department of Transportation (DOT)

BTS--Bureau of Transportation Statistics

FAA--Federal Aviation Administration
(Go To "Research and Acquisitions")
(Go To "Aviation Research")

Department of the Treasury

IRS--Internal Revenue Service

SOI--Statistics of Income vailable soon)

Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)
(Go To "Data")

Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

National Science Foundation (NSF)
(Go To "Info & Pubs")

Small Business Administration (SBA)
(Go To "Great Business Hot-Links")

Social Security Administration (SSA)
(Go To "Research and Statistics")

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