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OSC Annual Survey

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U.S. Office of Special Counsel.


Notice of modification of information collection.


The U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC), seeks approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for use of a modified survey that differs only slightly from the most recently approved information collection, OSC's 2020 Annual Survey. By statute, OSC must conduct an annual survey to collect feedback from those who have contacted OSC for assistance, either by filing complaints and/or disclosures with OSC, or by seeking Hatch Act Advisory Opinions. This OSC annual survey consists of four electronic questionnaires (one for each type of assistance an individual can seek from OSC), each asking between five and ten questions. OSC invites comments on: (a) The accuracy of OSC's estimate of the burden of the proposed collections of information; (b) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (c) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents.


Written comments should be received on or before March 8, 2021.


You may submit written comments by mail to: Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, Attention: Desk Officer for OSC, New Executive Office Building, Room 10235, Washington, DC 20503; or by email via:

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Amy Beckett, Senior Litigation Counsel, by telephone at (202) 804-7000, or by email at

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OSC is a permanent independent federal investigative and prosecutorial agency. OSC's basic authorities come from four federal statutes: The Civil Service Reform Act, the Whistleblower Protection Act, the Hatch Act, and the Uniformed Services Employment & Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA). OSC's primary mission is to safeguard the merit system by protecting federal employees and applicants from prohibited personnel practices, especially reprisal for whistleblowing, and to serve as a safe channel for allegations of wrongdoing. OSC is required to conduct an annual survey of individuals who seek its assistance. OSC conducts an annual survey pursuant to Section 13 of Public Law 103-424 (1994), codified at 5 U.S.C. 1212 note, which 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 statute Start Printed Page 8229requires OSC to publish the survey's results in OSC's annual report to Congress. Copies of prior years' annual reports are available on OSC's website, at​Pages/​Resources-ReportsAndInfo.aspx or by calling OSC at (202) 804-7000. The 2020 OSC Annual Survey, OMB Control Number 3255-0003, expires on March 30, 2021.

OSC will use the questionnaires to survey all persons who contacted OSC for assistance during the relevant time period.

The survey questionnaires are available for review online at​Resources/​Pages/​Reports.aspx#tabGroup07 or by calling OSC at (202) 804-7000.

Type of Information Collection Request: The survey seeks to determine whether individuals seeking assistance were fully apprised of their rights; were successful either at OSC or the MSPB; and whether successful or not, were satisfied with the treatment they received from OSC.

Affected public: Individuals (or their representatives) who sought OSC services through: (1) Submitting complaints alleging prohibited personnel practices, USERRA violations, or Hatch Act violations; (2) disclosures of information alleging violation of law, rule, or regulation, gross mismanagement or waste of funds, abuse of authority, substantial and specific danger to public health and/or safety, or censorship related to scientific research; or (3) seeking Hatch Act advisory opinions.

Respondent's Obligation: Voluntary.

Estimated Annual Number of Survey Form Respondents: 500.

Frequency of Survey form use: One-time.

Estimated Average Amount of Time for a Person to Respond to survey: 5.3 minutes.

Estimated Annual Survey Burden: 44 hours.

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Dated: January 29, 2021.

Bruce Gipe,

Chief Operating Officer.

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[FR Doc. 2021-02350 Filed 2-3-21; 8:45 am]