Review of Certain Costs Associated with Pretests for the 1980 Census

GGD-78-53: Published: May 23, 1978. Publicly Released: May 23, 1978.

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An examination of costs of the 1980 census pretests dealt with headquarters travel, the 1980 Census Advisory Committees, and the Public Information Office and the Community Relations Program as they relate to the pretests. The Bureau of the Census spent about $17.5 million for travel from July 1, 1975, to September 30, 1977, of which about $3.8 million was attributable to headquarters' activities. Most of the travel was directly related to program objectives, but some was for employee relocation or attendance at conferences. The Bureau had six standing and four temporary advisory committees as of December 31, 1977. The advisory committees, which deal with Black, Spanish origin, and Asian populations, and with housing, had expenses for travel and a pro rata share of other expenses totaling $135,000 in 1976 and $173,000 in 1977. Approximate costs for the Public Information Office were $545,000 in fiscal year (FY) 1976, $49,500 for the transition quarter, and $669,000 in FY 1977. It charged about $66,100 to pretest projects. Over $1 million was spent on the Community Services Program during FYs 1976 and 1977, but only about $15,000 was charged to pretest projects. Charges to the pretest projects by the Public Information Office and the Community Services Program were greatly understated because some costs were incorrectly charged to overhead or other projects. As of November 1977, 429 people from other organizations had active appointments as Census employees and had access to certain confidential information.

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