The decennial census is a Constitutionally-mandated activity that produces data used to apportion congressional seats, redraw congressional districts, and allocate billions of dollars in federal assistance. The Census Bureau (Bureau) estimates the 2010 Census will cost $11.3 billion, making it the most expensive in the nation's history. This testimony discusses the Bureau's progress in preparing for the 2010 Census to (1) implement operations to increase the response rate and control costs; (2) use technology to increase productivity; (3) hire and train temporary staff; and (4) plan an accurate census in areas affected by hurricanes Katrina and Rita. The testimony is based on previously issued GAO reports and work nearing completion in which GAO observed recruiting, hiring, and training practices in the 2006 test, and visited localities that participated in the Local Update of Addresses Dress Rehearsal as well in the Gulf Coast region.
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