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Proposed Collection; Comment Request

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The Department of Labor, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, conducts a pre-clearance consultation program to provide the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing collections of information in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA95) [44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)]. This program helps to ensure that requested data can be provided in the desired format, reporting burden (time and financial resources) is minimized, collection instruments are clearly understood, and the impact of collection requirements on respondents can be properly assessed. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is soliciting comments concerning the proposed revision of the “National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997.” A copy of the proposed information collection request (ICR) can be obtained by contacting the individual listed in the ADDRESSES section of this notice.


Written comments must be submitted to the office listed in the ADDRESSES section below on or before August 14, 2006.


Send comments to Amy A. Hobby, BLS Clearance Officer, Division of Management Systems, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Room 4080, 2 Massachusetts Avenue, NE., Washington, DC 20212, telephone number 202-691-7628. (This is not a toll free number.)

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Amy A. Hobby, BLS Clearance Officer, telephone number 202-691-7628. (See ADDRESSES section.)

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I. Background

The National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997 (NLSY97) is a nationally representative sample of persons who were born in the years 1980 to 1984. These respondents were ages 12-17 when the first round of annual interviews began in 1997; the tenth round of annual interviews is being conducted from October 2006 to May 2007. The pretest interviews for round 11 will take place in July and August 2007. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) contracts with the Center for Human Resource Research (CHRR) of the Ohio State University to implement the NLSY97 survey. The National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago is responsible for interviewing these respondents on a yearly basis to study transition from schooling to the establishment of careers and families. The longitudinal focus of this survey requires information to be collected from the same individuals over many years in order to trace their education, training, work experience, fertility, income, and program participation. One of the goals of the Department of Labor (DOL) is to produce and disseminate timely, accurate, and relevant information about the U.S. labor force. The BLS contributes to this goal by gathering information about the labor force and labor market and disseminating it to policy makers and the public so that participants in those markets can make more informed, and thus more efficient, choices. Research based on the NLSY97 contributes to the formation of national policy in the areas of education, training, employment programs, and school-to-work transitions. In addition to the reports that the BLS produces based on data from the NLSY97, members of the academic community publish articles and reports based on NLSY97 data for the DOL and other funding agencies. The survey design provides data gathered from the same respondents over time to form the only data set that contains this type of information for this important population group. Without the collection of these data, an accurate longitudinal data set could not be provided to researchers and policymakers, thus adversely affecting the DOL's ability to perform its policy- and report-making activities.

II. Current Action

The Bureau of Labor Statistics seeks approval to conduct round 10 of annual interviews of the NLSY97 as well as the pretest for round 11. Respondents to the NLSY97 will undergo an interview of approximately one hour during which they will answer questions about schooling and labor market experiences, family relationships, and community background.

During the fielding period for the main round 10 interviews, about 750 respondents will be asked to participate in a brief second interview to ascertain whether the initial interview took place as the interviewer reported and to assess the data quality of selected questionnaire items.

During round 10, the BLS proposes to increase respondent financial and in-kind incentives to encourage greater cooperation both in the current round and in future rounds. In addition, the BLS proposes to add a set of experimental questions near the end of the round 10 questionnaire that are designed to improve respondent engagement with and enjoyment of the survey. The experimental questions are subjective and provide respondents with an opportunity to express their opinions or feelings about various topics, in contrast to most other questions in the survey, which generally are objective and focus on behavior. The ultimate goal of the experimental questions is to encourage long-term respondent cooperation.

The BLS also proposes to add a questionnaire section that includes questions about labor force participation that also are asked in the monthly Current Population Survey. These questions previously were asked in round 4 of the NLSY97. Finally, the BLS proposes in round 10 to make a variety of minor changes to existing questionnaire sections and to remove some less vital questions to offset the additional respondent burden from the questionnaire sections that are being added.

III. Desired Focus of Comments

The Bureau of Labor Statistics is particularly interested in comments that:

  • Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;
  • Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;
  • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and
  • Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submissions of responses. Start Printed Page 34394

Type of Review: Revision of a currently approved collection.

Agency: Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Title: National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997.

OMB Number: 1220-0157.

Affected Public: Individuals or households.

FormTotal respondentsFrequencyTotal responses
Main Round 10 Interview7,500Annually7,500
Round 10 Validation Interview750Annually750
Round 11 Pretest200Annually200
The difference between the total number of respondents and the total number of responses reflects the fact that 750 respondents will be interviewed twice, once in the main round 10 survey and a second time in the validation interview.

Total Burden Cost (capital/startup): $0.

Total Burden Cost (operating/maintenance): $0.

Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and/or included in the request for Office of Management and Budget approval of the information collection request; they also will become a matter of public record.

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Signed at Washington, DC, this 5th day of June, 2006.

Cathy Kazanowski,

Chief, Division of Management Systems, Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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[FR Doc. E6-9254 Filed 6-13-06; 8:45 am]