Expanding the Decennial Census Applicant Pool

T-GGD-89-22: Published: May 23, 1989. Publicly Released: May 23, 1989.

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GAO discussed proposed legislation which would allow federal retirees to work on the 1990 decennial census without salary or annuity offset. GAO noted that: (1) the proposed legislation could enlarge the pool of applicants for temporary census employment and help the Census Bureau address its severe staffing problems; (2) federal retirees, who have demonstrated a lifetime commitment to the values of public service, could be a valuable asset to the Bureau over and above what is generally expected of temporary census employees; (3) many federal retirees lived in or near areas where the Bureau needed temporary census help; and (4) the proposed legislation was consistent with previous exemptions granted to federal retirees to meet important government hiring needs. GAO also noted that the Bureau will need to: (1) ensure that it takes maximum advantage of the exemptions by specially targeting recruitment efforts to attract federal retirees; and (2) design and implement a system to monitor the number of exempted retirees it hires to determine the success of the exemption.

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