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Notice

Agency Information Collection Activities; Request for Comment

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AGENCY:

Office of Special Counsel.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), and implementing regulations at 5 CFR part 1320, the U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC), plans to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for use of a previously approved information collection consisting of a customer survey form.

OSC is required by law to conduct an annual survey of those who seek its assistance. The information collection is used to carry out that mandate. The current OMB approval for this collection of information expired on July 31, 2005.

Current and former Federal employees, employee representatives, other Federal agencies, state and local government employees, and the general public are invited to comment on this information collection for a second time. The first notification, sent out on April 28, 2005, received no replies. Comments are invited on: (a) whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of OSC functions, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of OSC's estimate of the burden of the proposed collections of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

DATES:

Comments should be received by September 5, 2005.

ADDRESSES:

Roderick Anderson, Director of Management and Budget, U.S. Office of Special Counsel, 1730 M Street, N.W., Suite 218, Washington, DC 20036-4505.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Roderick Anderson, Director of Management and Budget at the address shown above; by facsimile at (202) 254-3715. The survey form for the collection of information is available for review by calling OSC, or on OSC's Web site, at http://www.osc.gov/​reading.htm.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

OSC is an independent agency responsible for, among other things, (1) investigation of allegations of prohibited personnel practices defined by law at 5 U.S.C. 2302(b), protection of whistleblowers, and certain other illegal employment practices under titles 5 and 38 of the U.S. Code, affecting current or former Federal employees or applicants for employment, and covered state and local government employees; and (2) the interpretation and enforcement of Hatch Act provisions on political activity in chapters 15 and 73 of title 5 of the U.S. Code.

OSC is required to conduct an annual survey of individuals who seek its assistance. Section 13 of Public Law 103-424 (1994), codified at 5 U.S.C. 1212 note, states, in part: ``[T]he survey shall--(1) determine if the individual seeking assistance was fully apprised of their rights; (2) determine whether the individual was successful either at the Office of Special Counsel or the Merit Systems Protection Board; and (3) determine if the individual, whether successful or not, was satisfied with the treatment received from the Office of Special Counsel.'' The same section also provides that survey results are to be published in OSC's annual report to Congress. Copies of prior years' annual reports are available on OSC's Web site, at http://www.osc.gov/​library.htm (at the “Annual Reports to Congress” link), or by calling OSC at (202) 254-3600.

OSC has enhanced the effectiveness of this survey by having revised the questions asked, having added a section dealing with the Uniform Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA), having limited the questions asked to only those areas where an individual had rights before the MSPB under 5 U.S.C. 1212, and by having converted to an online survey. The form has been edited to make the survey clearer (e.g., by re-ordering questions and possible answers). The estimated response time has been reduced due to the survey's automation.

Title of Collection: OSC Survey--Prohibited Personnel Practice or Other Prohibited Activity (Agency Form Number OSC-48a; OMB Control Number 3255-0003)

Type of Information Collection Request: Approval of a previously approved collection of information that expires on July 31, 2005, with revisions.

Affected public: Current and former Federal employees, applicants for Federal employment, state and local government employees, and their representatives, and the general public.

Respondent's Obligation: Voluntary.

Estimated Annual Number of Respondents: 600.

Frequency: Annual.

Estimated Average Amount of Time for a Person to Respond: 12 minutes.

Estimated Annual Burden: 109 hours.

Abstract: This form is used to survey current and former Federal employees and applicants for Federal employment who have submitted allegations of possible prohibited personnel practices or other prohibited activity for investigation and possible prosecution by OSC, and whose matter has been closed or otherwise resolved during the prior fiscal year, on their experience at OSC. Specifically, the survey asks questions relating to whether the respondent was: (1) apprised of his or her rights; (2) successful at the OSC or at the Merit Systems Protection Board; and (3) satisfied with the treatment received at the OSC.

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Dated: August 04, 2005.

Scott J. Bloch,

Special Counsel.

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[FR Doc. 05-16034 Filed 8-11-05; 8:45 am]

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