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Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Request and Comment Request

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The Social Security Administration (SSA) publishes a list of information collection packages requiring clearance by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in compliance with Public Law 104-13, the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, effective October 1, 1995. This notice includes revisions and extensions of OMB-approved information collections.

SSA is soliciting comments on the accuracy of the agency's burden estimate; the need for the information; its practical utility; ways to enhance its quality, utility, and clarity; and ways to minimize burden on respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Mail, email, or fax your comments and recommendations on the information collection(s) to the OMB Desk Officer and SSA Reports Clearance Officer at the following addresses or fax numbers.

(OMB) Office of Management and Budget, Attn: Desk Officer for SSA, Fax: 202-395-6974, Email address: OIRA_Submission@omb.eop.gov. Start Printed Page 3714

(SSA) Social Security Administration, OLCA, Attn: Reports Clearance Director, 3100 West High Rise, 6401 Security Blvd., Baltimore, MD 21235, Fax: 410-966-2830, Email address: OR.Reports.Clearance@ssa.gov

Or you may submit your comments online through www.regulations.gov, referencing Docket ID Number [SSA-2015-0001].

I. The information collections below are pending at SSA. SSA will submit them to OMB within 60 days from the date of this notice. To be sure we consider your comments, we must receive them no later than March 24, 2015. Individuals can obtain copies of the collection instruments by writing to the above email address.

1. Waiver of Right to Appear—Disability Hearing—20 CFR 404.913-404.914, 404.916(b)(5), 416.1413-416.1414, 416.1416(b)(5)—0960-0534. Claimants for Social Security disability payments or their representatives can use Form SSA-773-U4 to officially waive their right to appear at a disability hearing. The disability hearing officer uses the signed form as a basis for not holding a hearing, and for preparing a written decision on the claimant's request for disability payments based solely on the evidence of record. The respondents are claimants for disability payments under Title II and Title XVI of the Social Security Act, or their representatives, who wish to waive their right to appear at a disability hearing.

Type of Request: Revision of an OMB-approved information collection.

Modality of completionNumber of respondentsFrequency of responseAverage burden per response (minutes)Estimated total annual burden (hours)
SSA-773-U42001310

2. Promoting Readiness of Minors in SSI (PROMISE) Evaluation—0960-0799.

Background.

The Promoting Readiness of Minors in SSI (PROMISE) demonstration pursues positive outcomes for children with disabilities who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and their families by reducing dependency on SSI. The Department of Education (ED) awarded six cooperative agreements to states to improve the provision and coordination of services and support for children with disabilities who receive SSI and their families to achieve improved education and employment outcomes. ED awarded PROMISE funds to five single-state projects, and to one six-state consortium.[1] With support from ED, the Department of Labor (DOL), and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), SSA is evaluating the six PROMISE projects. SSA contracted with Mathematica Policy Research to conduct the evaluation.

Under PROMISE, targeted outcomes for youth include an enhanced sense of self-determination; achievement of secondary and post-secondary educational credentials; an attainment of early work experiences culminating with competitive employment in an integrated setting; and long-term reduction in reliance on SSI. Outcomes of interest for families include heightened expectations for and support of the long-term self-sufficiency of their youth; parent or guardian attainment of education and training credentials; and increases in earnings and total income. To achieve these outcomes, we expect the PROMISE projects to make better use of existing resources by improving service coordination among multiple state and local agencies and programs.

ED, SSA, DOL, and HHS intend the PROMISE projects to address key limitations in the existing service system for youth with disabilities. By intervening early in the lives of these young people, at ages 14-16, the projects engage the youth and their families well before critical decisions regarding the age 18 redetermination are upon them. We expect the required partnerships among the various state and Federal agencies that serve youth with disabilities to result in improved integration of services and fewer dropped handoffs as youth move from one agency to another. By requiring the programs to engage and serve families and provide youth with paid work experiences, the initiative is mandating the adoption of critical best practices in promoting the independence of youth with disabilities.

Project Description

SSA is requesting clearance for the collection of data needed to implement and evaluate PROMISE. The evaluation provides empirical evidence on the impact of the intervention for youth and their families in several critical areas, including: (1) Improved educational attainment; (2) increased employment skills, experience, and earnings; and (3) long-term reduction in use of public benefits. We base the PROMISE evaluation on a rigorous design that entails the random assignment of approximately 2,000 youth in each of the six projects to treatment or control groups (12,000 total). The PROMISE projects provide enhanced services for youth in the treatment groups; whereas youth in the control groups are eligible only for those services already available in their communities independent of the interventions.

The evaluation assesses the effect of PROMISE services on educational attainment, employment, earnings, and reduced receipt of disability payments. The three components of this evaluation include:

  • The process analysis, which documents program models, assesses the relationships among the partner organizations, documents whether the grantees implemented the programs as planned, identifies features of the programs that may account for their impacts on youth and families, and identifies lessons for future programs with similar objectives.
  • The impact analysis, which determines whether youth and families in the treatment groups receive more services than their counterparts in the control groups. It also determines whether treatment group members have better results than control group members with respect to the targeted outcomes noted above.
  • The cost-benefit analysis, which assesses whether the benefits of PROMISE, including increases in employment and reductions in benefit receipt, are large enough to justify its costs. We conduct this assessment from a range of perspectives, including those of the participants, state and Federal governments, SSA, and society as a whole.

SSA planned several data collection efforts for the evaluation. These include: (1) Follow-up interviews with youth and their parent or guardian 18 months and 5 years after enrollment; (2) phone and in-person interviews with local program administrators, program supervisors, and service delivery staff at Start Printed Page 3715two points in time over the course of the demonstration; (3) two rounds of focus groups with participating youth in the treatment group; (4) two rounds of focus groups with parents or guardians of participating youth; and (5) collection of administrative data.

At this time, SSA requests clearance for the 18-month survey interviews. SSA will request clearance for the 5-year survey interviews in a future submission. The respondents are the youth participants in the PROMISE program, and the parents or guardians of the youth participants.

Type of Request: Revision of an OMB-approved information collection.

Time Burden on Respondents

Modality of completionNumber of respondentsFrequency of responseAverage burden per response (minutes)Estimated total annual burden (hours)
2014: Interviews and Focus Group Discussions
Staff Interviews with Administrators or Directors7516683
Staff Interviews with PROMISE Project Staff145166160
Youth Focus Groups—Non-participants3201527
Youth Focus Groups—Participants801100133
Parents or Guardian Focus Groups—Non-participants3201527
Parents or Guardian Focus Groups—Participants801100133
Totals1,020563
2015: 18 Month Survey Interviews
18 Month Survey Interviews—Parent850141581
18 Month Survey Interviews—Youth850130425
Totals1,7001,006
2016: Interviews and Focus Group Discussions
Staff Interviews with Administrators or Directors7516683
Staff Interviews with PROMISE Project Staff145166160
Youth Focus Groups—Non-participants3201527
Youth Focus Groups—Participants801100133
Parents or Guardian Focus Groups—Non-participants3201527
Parents or Guardian Focus Groups—Participants801100133
18 Month Survey Interviews—Parent5,1001413,485
18 Month Survey Interviews—Youth5,1001302,550
Totals11,2206,598
2017: 18 Month Survey Interviews
18 Month Survey Interviews—Parent4,2501412,904
18 Month Survey Interviews—Youth4,2501302,125
Totals8,5005,029
Grand Total
Grand Total22,44013,196

Cost Burden for Respondents

Respondent typeNumber of respondentsFrequency of responseAverage burden per response (minutes)Median hourly wage rate (dollars)Total respondent cost (dollars)
2014: Annual Cost to Respondents
Parent or Guardian Focus Group—Non-Participants32015$7.38$196.01
Parent or Guardian Focus Group—Participants8011007.38984.20
Total4001,180.21
2016: Annual Cost to Respondents
Parent or Guardian Focus Group—Non-Participants320157.38196.01
Parent or Guardian Focus Group—Participants8011007.38984.20
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Total4001,180.21
Grand Total Cost Estimate
Grand Total8002,360.42

II. SSA submitted the information collections below to OMB for clearance. Your comments regarding the information collections would be most useful if OMB and SSA receive them 30 days from the date of this publication. To be sure we consider your comments, we must receive them no later than February 23, 2015. Individuals can obtain copies of the OMB clearance package by writing to OR.Reports.Clearance@ssa.gov.

1. Modified Benefit Formula Questionnaire—Foreign Pension—0960-0561. SSA uses Form SSA-308 to determine exactly how much (if any) of a foreign pension may be used to reduce the amount of Title II Social Security retirement or disability benefits under the modified benefit formula. The respondents are applicants for Title II Social Security retirement or disability benefits who have foreign pensions.

Type of Request: Extension of an OMB-approved information collection.

Modality of completionNumber of respondentsFrequency of responseAverage burden per response (minutes)Estimated total annual burden (hours)
SSA-30813,4521102,242
Phone Interview1,6661601,666
Totals15,1183,908

2. Filing Claims Under the Federal Tort Claims Act—20 CFR 429.101-429.110—0960-0667. The Federal Tort Claims Act is the legal mechanism for compensating persons injured by negligent or wrongful acts that occur during the performance of official duties by Federal employees. In accordance with the law, SSA accepts monetary claims filed under the Federal Tort Claims Act for damages against the United States, loss of property, personal injury, or death resulting from an SSA employee's wrongful act or omission. The regulation sections cleared under this information collection request require claimants to provide information SSA can use to investigate and determine whether to make an award, compromise, or settlement under the Federal Tort Claims Act. The respondents are individuals or entities making a claim under the Federal Tort Claims Act.

Type of Request: Extension of an OMB-approved information collection.

CFR sectionNumber of respondentsFrequency of responseAverage burden per response (minutes)Estimated total annual burden (hours)
429.102; 429.103 111
429.104(a)11151
429.104(b)43154
429.104(c)1150
429.106(b)61101
Totals627
1 The 1 hour represents a placeholder burden. We are not reporting a burden for this collection because respondents complete OMB-approved Form SF-95.
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Dated: January 20, 2015.

Faye Lipsky,

Reports Clearance Officer, Social Security Administration.

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Footnotes

1.  The six-state consortium project goes by the name Achieving Success by Promoting Readiness for Education and Employment (ASPIRE) rather than by PROMISE.

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[FR Doc. 2015-01129 Filed 1-22-15; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4191-02-P