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Notice

Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Survey of State Government Research and Development

This document has a comment period that ends in 25 days. (02/11/2019) Submit a formal comment

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Start Preamble

AGENCY:

U.S. Census Bureau, Commerce.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.

DATES:

To ensure consideration, written or on-line comments must be submitted on or before February 11, 2019.

ADDRESSES:

Direct all written comments to Jennifer Jessup, Departmental Paperwork Clearance Officer, Department of Commerce, Room 6616, 14th and Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20230 (or via the internet at PRAcomments@doc.gov).

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Requests for additional information or copies of the information collection instrument(s) and instructions should be directed to Michael Flaherty, U.S. Census Bureau, HQ-6H051, 4600 Silver Hill Rd., Suitland, MD 20746, (301) 763-7699 (or via the internet at michael.j.flaherty@census.gov).

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Abstract

The United States Census Bureau plans to continue to conduct the Survey of State Government Research and Development (SGRD) to measure research and development performed and funded by state government agencies in the United States. The Census Bureau conducts the survey on behalf of the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics (NCSES) within the National Science Foundation.

The National Science Foundation Act of 1950, as amended, includes a statutory charge to “provide a central clearinghouse for the collection, interpretation, and analysis of data on scientific and engineering resources and to provide a source of information for policy formulation by other agencies in the Federal Government.” This mandate was further codified in the America COMPETES Reauthorization Act of 2010 § 505, which requires NCSES to “collect, acquire, analyze, report, and disseminate . . . statistical data on (A) research and development trends . . .” Under the aegis of these legislative mandates, NCSES has sponsored surveys of research and development (R&D) since 1951, including the SGRD since 2006. The Census Bureau's authorization to undertake this work is found at 13 U.S.C. Section 8(b) which provides that the Census Bureau “may make special statistical compilations and surveys for departments, agencies, and establishments of the Federal government, the government of the District of Columbia, the government of any possession or area (including political subdivisions thereof) . . . State or local agencies, or other public and private persons and agencies.”

The SGRD is the only comprehensive source of state government research and development expenditure data collected on a nationwide scale using uniform definitions, concepts, and procedures. The collection covers the expenditures of all agencies in the fifty state governments, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico that perform or fund R&D. The NCSES coordinates with the Census Bureau for the data collection. The NCSES uses this collection to satisfy, in part, its need to collect research and development expenditures data.

Fiscal data provided by respondents aid data users in measuring the effectiveness of resource allocation. The products of this data collection make it possible for data users to obtain information on such things as expenditures according to source of funding (e.g., federal funds or state funds), by performer of the work (e.g., intramural and extramural to state agencies), by function (e.g., agriculture, energy, health, transportation, etc.), by type of work (e.g., basic research, applied research, or experimental development) for intramural performance of R&D, and by R&D plant (e.g., construction projects). Final results produced by NCSES contain state and national estimates useful to a variety of data users interested in research and development performance including: The National Science Board; the Office of Management and Budget; the Office of Science and Technology Policy and other science policy makers; institutional researchers; and private organizations.

There are no substantive changes to content for the SGRD so total respondent burden will not change.

The survey announcements and forms used in the research and development survey are:

Survey Announcement. An introductory letter from the Directors of Start Printed Page 64104the NCSES and the Census Bureau is mailed to the Governor's Office to announce the survey collection and to solicit assignment of a State Coordinator. The State Coordinator's Announcement is sent electronically at the beginning of each survey period to solicit assistance in identifying state agencies which may perform or fund R&D activities.

Form SRD-1. This form contains item descriptions and definitions of the research and development items collected by the Census Bureau on behalf of the NCSES. It is used primarily as a worksheet and instruction guide by the state agencies providing research and development expenditure data in their respective states. All states supply their data by electronic means.

II. Method of Collection

The Census Bureau mails the 50 State governors, the mayor of DC, and the governor of Puerto Rico a letter requesting that they appoint a state coordinator for the survey. They are asked to respond within 30 days. The Census Bureau then emails the state coordinators a spreadsheet asking them to identify state agencies that may be active R&D performers. State coordinators are asked to respond within 30 days. The Census Bureau subsequently emails each state agency identified by the respective state coordinators a pdf version of the survey form, which contains embedded data checks and auto-summing functionality. Agencies are asked to complete and email back this pdf version of the form. Alternatively, agencies can download the pdf form from the Census Bureau's Help Site or contact the Census Bureau to request an spreadsheet version of the form with similar data checks and auto-summing. Agencies are also able to report over the telephone by calling the Census Bureau. Agencies are asked to respond within 60 days.

III. Data

OMB Control Number: 0607-0933.

Form Number: SRD-1.

Type of Review: Regular submission.

Affected Public: State government agencies.

Estimated Number of Respondents: 51 governors, 1 mayor, 52 state coordinators, and approximately 500 state government agencies.

Estimated Time per Response: 5 minutes for each governor, 1 hour for each state coordinator, and 2 hours for each state agency surveyed.

Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 1,056.

Estimated Total Annual Cost to the Public: $0. (This is not the cost of respondents' time, but the indirect costs respondents may incur for such things as purchases of specialized software or hardware needed to report, or expenditures for accounting or records maintenance services required specifically by the collection.)

Respondent's Obligation: Voluntary.

Legal Authority: National Science Foundation Act of 1950 as amended and the America COMPETES Reauthorization Act of 2010, Title 42 U.S.C. 1861-76; Title 13, U.S.C. Section 8(b).

IV. Request for Comments

Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden (including hours and cost) of the proposed collection 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.

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

Start Signature

Sheleen Dumas,

Departmental Lead PRA Officer, Office of the Chief Information Officer, Commerce Department.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 2018-26964 Filed 12-12-18; 8:45 am]

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