Comment Request on the Local Area Unemployment Statistics Program, 53787-53791 [2014-21241]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 175 / Wednesday, September 10, 2014 / Notices FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Heather Fleck at 202–693–2956, or fleck.heather@dol.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background The Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA) requires states to submit either a ‘‘standalone’’ strategic plan for title I of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 and the Wagner-Peyser Act (WIA Section 112) or a Unified Plan with partner programs (WIA Section 501). The State may also submit requests for waivers and work-flex as parts of the Strategic State Plan. These State Plan requirements are titled ‘‘State Integrated Workforce Plan Requirements for Workforce Investment Act/WagnerPeyser Act and Department of Labor Workforce Programs,’’ and ‘‘Planning Guidance for State Unified Plans and Unified Plan Modifications Submitted under Section 501 of the Workforce Investment Act (WIA).’’ The Planning Guidance and Instructions provide a framework for the collaboration of governors, local elected officials, businesses and other partners to continue the development of workforce investment systems that address customer needs, deliver integrated userfriendly services, and are accountable to the customers and the public. Sections 102 and 103 of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), (H.R. 803, July 22, 2014) include similar provisions for States to submit State Plans. Many of WIOA’s provisions take effect on July 1, 2015, but the existing WIA state and local plan provisions remain in effect until July 1, 2016. The Employment and Training Administration (ETA) is conducting a review of WIOA’s implementation timeline and State Plan provisions, and may amend this information collection as part of its implementation actions. This information collection is submitted under the legal requirements of WIA, the law in effect at this time. tkelley on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES II. Review Focus The Department is particularly interested in comments which: • 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; VerDate Mar<15>2010 19:04 Sep 09, 2014 Jkt 232001 • 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. III. Current Actions Type of Review: Extension without revisions. Title: Planning Guidance and Instructions for Submission of the Strategic State Plan for Title I of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA) and the Wagner-Peyser Act. OMB Number: 1205–0398. Affected Public: State or local governments. Estimated Total Annual Respondents: 10. Estimated Total Annual Responses: 10. Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 400. Total Estimated Annual Other Costs Burden: There are no other costs. We will summarize and/or include in the request for OMB approval of the ICR, the comments received in response to this comment request; they will also become a matter of public record. Portia Wu, Assistant Secretary for Employment and Training, Labor. [FR Doc. 2014–21571 Filed 9–9–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510–FN–P DEPARTMENT OF LABOR 53787 Wednesday, November 5, 2014, and continue until 5:00 p.m. that day. The meeting will reconvene at 9:00 a.m. on Thursday, November 6, 2014, and adjourn at 5:00 p.m. that day. The period from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. on November 5, 2014, will be reserved for participation and presentations by members of the public. ADDRESSES: The meeting will be held at the Brown Hotel, 335 West Broadway, Louisville, Kentucky 40202. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The meeting will be open to the public. Members of the public not present may submit a written statement on or before November 3, 2014, to be included in the record of the meeting. Statements are to be submitted to Mr. Craig Lewis, Designated Federal Official (DFO), U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Room S–4209, Washington, DC 20210. Persons who need special accommodations should contact Mr. Craig Lewis at (202) 693– 3384, at least two business days before the meeting. The formal agenda will focus on the following topics: (1) U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration Update; (2) Training and Technical Assistance; (3) Council and Workgroup Updates and Recommendations; (4) New Business and Next Steps; and (5) Public Comment. Mr. Craig Lewis, DFO, Division of Indian and Native American Programs, Employment and Training Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, Room S–4209, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210. Telephone number (202) 693–3384 (VOICE) (this is not a toll-free number). FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Employment and Training Administration Workforce Investment Act; Native American Employment and Training Council Signed at Washington, DC, August 2014. Portia Wu, Assistant Secretary, Employment and Training Administration. [FR Doc. 2014–21565 Filed 9–9–14; 8:45 am] Employment and Training Administration, U.S. Department of Labor. ACTION: Notice of meeting. BILLING CODE 4501–FR–P AGENCY: Pursuant to Section 10 (a)(2) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) (Pub. L. 92–463), as amended, and Section 166 (h)(4) of the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) [29 U.S.C. 2911(h)(4)], notice is hereby given of the next meeting of the Native American Employment and Training Council (Council), as constituted under WIA. DATES: The meeting will begin at 9:00 a.m. (Eastern Standard Time) on SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00104 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Bureau of Labor Statistics Comment Request on the Local Area Unemployment Statistics Program AGENCY: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Labor. Request for comments on proposed action. ACTION: The Department of Labor, through the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and, specifically, the Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\10SEN1.SGM 10SEN1 53788 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 175 / Wednesday, September 10, 2014 / Notices tkelley on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES program, is responsible for the development and publication of State and local area labor force statistics. The LAUS program develops and issues monthly estimates of the labor force, employment, unemployment, and the unemployment rate for approximately 7,300 areas in the Nation. A major program redesign to improve the methodological basis of the LAUS estimates and update the geography and techniques to reflect 2010 Census data was initially funded in FY 2011. After completion of various long-term research projects, the BLS plans to implement improvements to its estimating methods with State and area LAUS estimates for January 2015, to be published in March 2015. DATES: Written comments must be submitted to the office listed in the ADDRESSES section of this notice on or before November 10, 2014. ADDRESSES: Send comments to Patrick Carey, Local Area Unemployment Statistics, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Room 4675, Massachusetts Avenue NE., Washington, DC 20212 or by email to: LAUS_FRN@bls.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Walter Sylva, Local Area Unemployment Statistics, Bureau of Labor Statistics, telephone number 202– 691–6456 (this is not a toll-free number), or by email to: LAUS_FRN@ bls.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Introduction The Department of Labor, through the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is responsible for the development and publication of State and local area labor force statistics through the Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program. Currently, monthly estimates of employment, unemployment, and the unemployment rate are prepared for approximately 7,300 areas, including Census regions, Census Divisions, all States and the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, metropolitan and small labor market areas, counties, cities of 25,000 population or more, and all cities and towns in New England regardless of population. In a multi-year, multiproject initiative that began in FY 2011, the following prospective improvements to State and area labor force estimation were identified: • Improve State time series estimating models by introducing: Æ Model-Based Benchmarking that accounts for errors in the estimates Æ Additivity of outlier effects that allocates level shifts to the appropriate State Æ More efficient model structure that VerDate Mar<15>2010 19:04 Sep 09, 2014 Jkt 232001 reduces processing time Æ Enhanced smoothed seasonal adjustment procedures • Incorporate American Community Survey (ACS) data to replace Census long form data that are no longer available as inputs • Update procedures for developing other substate areas that employ innovative and dynamic estimating methods II. Background A hierarchy of estimation methods is used to produce the State and area labor force estimates, based in large part on the availability and quality of data from the Current Population Survey (CPS), the official measure of the labor force for the Nation. Labor force estimates are generated for the nine Census Divisions utilizing time series models and are controlled to National estimates. State estimates also are developed using time series models and are controlled to Division estimates. Finally, substate estimates are developed by means of a building-block approach using locally available data and are controlled to State estimates. Improved Time Series Models. The estimates for States, the District of Columbia, New York City and the Los Angeles Metropolitan Division, and their respective balances of New York State and California are developed using signal-plus-noise models. These models rely heavily on monthly CPS data as well as current wage and salary employment estimates from the Current Employment Statistics (CES) program and claims data from State unemployment insurance (UI) programs. There are signal-plus-noise models for five additional substate areas and their respective balances of State. The areas are: The Chicago-Naperville-Joliet, IL metropolitan division; the ClevelandElyria-Mentor, OH metropolitan area; the Detroit-Warren-Livonia, MI metropolitan area; the Miami-Miami Beach-Kendall, FL metropolitan division; and the Seattle-BellevueEverett, WA metropolitan division. As with the State and Census Division models, these area models are based on the classical decomposition of a time series into trend, seasonal, and irregular components. A component to identify and remove CPS sampling error is also included. Area models, like the Census Division models, are univariate in design in that only the historical relationship of the CPS is considered— UI claims data and CES employment data are not used each month in the estimation process. The monthly estimates of employment and unemployment utilize PO 00000 Frm 00105 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 a tiered approach to estimation known as real-time benchmarking. Model-based estimates (using a univariate form) are developed for the nine Census Divisions that geographically exhaust the Nation. These estimates are controlled to the National levels of employment and unemployment. State model-based estimates are then made and controlled to the Census Division estimates. In this manner, the monthly State employment and unemployment estimates will add to the National levels, precluding differences between the sum of States and the National estimates, and National shocks related to the business cycle or outliers like September 11 will be addressed in real time. Monthly prorata factors for each Census Division are used to adjust the sum of the States within each Census Division to sum to the Division totals. Census Divisions also use pro-rata factors to ensure that they sum to the Nation. Substate estimates, including the area and balance-of-State models noted above, are controlled directly to the State totals, which are themselves controlled to the National CPS via the Census Division models. The new time series models introduce the following major improvements: (1) Model-based benchmarking, (2) additivity of outlier effects, (3) new model structure, and (4) enhanced smoothed seasonal adjustment procedure. The improved models will directly produce estimates that automatically sum to Census Division controls and thus eliminate the need for the external pro-rata factors currently in use to benchmark State estimates to their Census Divisions. During the benchmarking process the new models account for the errors inherent in each facet of the estimating procedure. These include State-specific CPS sampling error, State model prediction errors based on historical patterns, errors in the estimates used as a benchmark (Census Division & National), and the relation of these errors to the overall size of the benchmark discrepancy. This approach provides greater flexibility (monthly benchmarking adjustments will vary by State and by type of series), smoother monthly adjustment factors, and improved reliability measures. Another important improvement is that the new models allow for the additivity of outlier effects. Outlier estimates will be separated from the benchmarking process, resulting in the outliers being specific to where they occurred. Level shifts and onetime outliers will not be spread across all States within a Census Division so as E:\FR\FM\10SEN1.SGM 10SEN1 tkelley on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 175 / Wednesday, September 10, 2014 / Notices not to distort the magnitude of the outlier effect. The new model structure uses CES and UI trend estimates as regressor variables to explain trend variation in the CPS. This produces results similar to current bivariate models but with a major reduction in computing time. The new structure also allows for more flexibility for model development over the long term. An enhanced smooth seasonal adjustment procedure will be utilized to address the presence of residual seasonality that is noticeable in some of the smoothed seasonally adjusted employment series. The smoothed seasonal adjustment (SSA) procedure was implemented in 2005 with the third generation of models. The SSA procedure uses the Henderson Trend Filter to isolate the trend of the series by removing much of the volatility that is introduced to the State’s estimates during the real-time benchmarking process. However, even with the application of the SSA there still remained some statistical evidence of weak residual seasonality in the SSA employment series. (The unemployment levels and the unemployment rates were not affected.) To address this concern, the fourth generation of models utilize an improved smoothed seasonal adjustment filter. In addition to the trend filter, additional weights have been added to create a seasonal filter as well. The enhanced procedure will continue to remove the volatility introduced by real-time benchmarking, while simultaneously removing all residual seasonality that results from benchmarking to a seasonal series. Incorporation of American Community Survey. For the 2010 Census, the long- and short-form questionnaires used from 1940 to 2000 were replaced by a single questionnaire asking 10 questions. The more detailed socio-economic data once obtained by the long-form questionnaire are now provided by the American Community Survey (ACS). The LAUS program had been reliant on the long form data as the basis for developing substate estimates for self-employed, unpaid family workers, private household workers, and agricultural workers throughout the decade. These data elements represent employment that is either not covered by unemployment insurance compensation programs or not included in the payroll survey data CES, thus the Census long form had been the sole source for this type of information at the local level. ACS data are issued on an annual basis and they do not represent a single VerDate Mar<15>2010 19:04 Sep 09, 2014 Jkt 232001 point in time as did the decennial Census, which represented April 1 in the year that the Census was conducted. Instead ACS data are estimates that span 1 year, 3 years, or 5 years depending on the population level of each area. To ensure coverage of all LAUS geography, which includes areas with 25,000 population or more and all cities and towns in New England regardless of population, the 5-year estimates must be used. In addition to covering all LAUS geography, the 5-year estimates use the largest sample size and are the most statistically reliable of the ACS estimates. However, since they represent a 5-year span they cannot be directly used to develop current monthly estimates. The most current source of the needed data inputs is the CPS which does not have the geographic detail of the ACS. The proposed methodology will utilize the strengths of the CPS and the ACS to develop monthly estimates of selfemployed, unpaid family, and private household workers (collectively known as ‘‘all-other’’ employment) and agricultural workers at the needed level of geography. Enhanced procedures for developing other substate areas. Utilizing ACS data to replace the Census long form data facilitated the enhancement of some of the substate methodologies making up the building-block approach used to develop independent substate estimates. Revisions are proposed for the methodology of adjusting place-of-work data to a place-of-residence basis, the estimation of what is known as ‘‘allother’’ employment, the estimation of agricultural employment, and the estimation of agricultural unemployment not covered by unemployment insurance. In addition, substate estimates will be developed at the county level rather than the labor market area level. A brief discussion of the new methodologies is below. Place-of-Work Residency Adjustment. The LAUS program uses the same labor force concepts as the CPS. Thus employment inputs from the CES and Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) programs, which are based on place-of-work, must be adjusted to reflect the worker’s place of residence per the CPS. To accomplish this, Dynamic Residency Ratios (DRRs) are applied to CES and QCEW employment inputs for LAUS estimation. This methodology assumes that resident employment in an area is a function of the relationship between employed residents and jobs not only in that area, but in other areas within commuting distance. The procedure is more dynamic than the use of a single PO 00000 Frm 00106 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 53789 residency ratio insofar as job count changes in commuting areas can affect resident employment. In the past, journey-to-work data from the decennial Census were incorporated into the DRRs. Journey-to-work data were not available from 2010 Census due to the discontinuation of the long form. For the LAUS 2015 redesign, DRRs will be computed using ACS journey-to-work data in the same manner that they are computed now with one major modification. Currently, an area must be the destination workplace of at least 100 resident commuters (50 in New England) to be considered a potential commuter area. BLS proposes replacing these criteria with a percentage threshold. In the new set of DRRs, commuter areas will be limited to those areas that are the work destination of no less than 10 percent of resident commuters. This will eliminate marginal commuter areas included in the previous methodology to account for potential future growth. The previous threshold for DRR commutation areas reflected the tenyear span between Census journey-towork data releases. The inclusion of a relatively high number of areas would accommodate any potential changes to commuting patterns over the ensuing decade. The new data source for DRRs, ACS journey-to-work data, is intended to be updated every five years. The increased frequency in the availability of commutation data will make the list of commutation areas more responsive to changing commuting patterns, reducing the need to include minor destinations which may grow in importance over time. Estimation of All-Other Employment. The current method uses Census 2000 data as the starting point for the selfemployed, unpaid family, and private household workers (known as ‘‘AllOther Employment’’) and moves it forward through time by applying the relationship of all-other employment to the nonfarm wage and salary employment estimate at the time of the Census. The new method uses the relationship of each area’s share of ACS all-other employment to the State’s total ACS allother employment. This relationship is then used to allocate a monthly 5-year weighted average of each State’s CPS estimate of all-other employment. A weighted average of the CPS estimate is used because, depending on the State’s CPS sample size, the monthly estimate for this element may be volatile due to sampling error. This monthly 5-year weighted average consists of the current month’s estimate averaged with the same month’s estimate going back 4 E:\FR\FM\10SEN1.SGM 10SEN1 tkelley on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 53790 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 175 / Wednesday, September 10, 2014 / Notices years, with more weight placed on the more current estimates. This technique borrows strength from prior estimates while preserving seasonal trends. Estimation of Agricultural Employment. The current method uses the Census 2000 data as the base and moves the estimate forward using a monthly change factor based on a State’s membership in a multi-State agricultural region. The new method for estimation of agricultural employment uses a similar approach as the all-other employment method. A monthly 5-year weighted average of each State’s CPS estimate of agricultural employment is developed and allocated to substate areas using each areas’ share of the State’s total ACS agricultural employment. This method is State-specific and eliminates the need for an agricultural regional factor. Estimation of non-covered agricultural unemployment. This is an optional procedure that is currently utilized by 19 States. The current procedure uses an indirect approach for the estimation of agricultural unemployment not covered by unemployment insurance. It assumes that there is unemployment associated with employment and that the unemployment rate in non-covered agriculture is related to the rate of unemployment in covered sectors of the economy. To estimate non-covered agricultural employment, the annual average of covered agricultural employment from the QCEW program is subtracted from the covered agricultural employment estimate that is developed each month (as described in the prior section). Seasonal factors derived from CPS agricultural data from 1977–1982 are applied to account for seasonality. The new method replaces the annual average QCEW covered agricultural employment with a 1-year lagged monthly estimate of agricultural employment from the QCEW and eliminates the potentially outdated seasonal factors. Use of a 1-year lagged monthly estimate will incorporate seasonal trends into the estimate, simplifying the calculation and making it more responsive to long-term changes in seasonal patterns. New procedure for estimating employment and unemployment at the county level. Labor market areas (LMAs) are independently estimated using a building block approach that incorporates the new methods discussed above and other methods still currently in use. The employment component is comprised of non-agricultural wage and salary employment, all-other employment and agricultural employment. While the unemployment VerDate Mar<15>2010 19:04 Sep 09, 2014 Jkt 232001 component is derived by summing the estimates of non-covered agricultural unemployment (if applicable), total unemployment insurance (UI) continued claims without earnings, unemployed exhaustees and unemployed entrants into the labor force. The current procedure consists of first developing these independent substate estimates at the LMA level and then disaggregating them into counties and cities. With the exception of nonagricultural wage and salary employment, all inputs for estimating the components of employment and unemployment are readily available at the county level (Minor Civil Division (MCD) level in New England, MCDs being cities and towns). Aggregating these more geographically detailed data into LMAs is an unnecessary step that results in the distortion of these data when they are reallocated backed to the county level or MCD level, particularly for some of the unemployment components. The new method proposes to first develop the independent substate estimates at county level and then sum them to their appropriate LMA. This approach will result in more accurate estimates and will allow better operational flexibility for future updates to the geographic definitions of LMAs as counties (MCDs in New England) are the basic component of LMA geographic definitions issued by the Office of Management (OMB), as well as for small labor market areas as defined by the BLS. The current method estimates the labor force in LMAs, which are defined to comprise one or more counties (MCDs in New England). Employment and unemployment inputs are entered at the LMA level. In a multi-county LMA, county unemployment estimates are disaggregated from the LMA using the share of UI claims for the experienced unemployed, the share of the 16–19 population for unemployed new entrants, and the share of the 20+ population for unemployed re-entrants. The new procedures discussed above for estimating the employment components of all-other employment and agricultural employment produce these estimates at the county level. The non-agricultural wage and salary employment component, which is provided by the CES and the QCEW programs, is generally available at the LMA level and must be allocated into the counties that comprise the LMA. This will be accomplished by using ACS non-agricultural wage and salary employment ratios derived from the most recent ACS five-year dataset to PO 00000 Frm 00107 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 distribute the CES/QCEW LMA data to its component counties (and MCDs in New England). This step is not needed for single county LMAs. All of the necessary inputs for estimating unemployment are already available at the county (and MCD) level. The new procedure results in more accurate county estimates by estimating the level of persons who remain unemployed after exhausting their eligibility for unemployment insurance benefits (known as exhaustees) at the county level and by avoiding the disaggregation of entrants from interstate LMAs. In the current method, if a layoff event occurs in a county that is part of a multi-county LMA, the exhaustees later associated with this event are not necessarily assigned to the county where the layoff occurred. This is because estimates of persons who have exhausted their eligibility for further UI benefits are disaggregated to a county using that county’s share of persons who continue to be eligible for benefits. Using the new county-based methodology, each county will have its own independently estimated number of exhaustees, which will make it unnecessary to disaggregate exhaustees from the LMA level. In addition, unemployed entrants to the labor force are allocated from a Statewide control total to the intrastate parts of interstate LMAs using ratios based on annually updated population data from the Census Bureau. These entrants are then summed into their respective interstate LMAs before being disaggregated again using ratios based on population data specific to each interstate LMA. In some cases this twostep process has the effect of reallocating entrant unemployment estimates across State lines. Using the new county-based methodology, each county will be allocated its share of entrants in one step. Detailed descriptions of the current and Redesign approaches are available at the above address and at the BLS LAUS Web site http://www.bls.gov/lau/ home.htm. II. Desired Focus of Comments This notice is a general solicitation of comments from the public. Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and included in the Notice of Decision on this proposal. E:\FR\FM\10SEN1.SGM 10SEN1 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 175 / Wednesday, September 10, 2014 / Notices Signed at Washington, DC, this 29th day of August 2014. Eric Molina, Acting Chief, Division of Management Systems, Bureau of Labor Statistics. [FR Doc. 2014–21241 Filed 9–9–14; 8:45 am] NATIONAL ARCHIVES AND RECORDS ADMINISTRATION [NARA–2014–054] National Archives and Records Administration. ACTION: Notice of meeting. AGENCY: In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. appendix 2), the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) announces a meeting of the Advisory Committee on Presidential Library-Foundation Partnerships. The meeting will be held to discuss the Presidential Library program and topics related to the public-private partnership between Presidential Libraries and Presidential Foundations. The meeting will be open to the public. DATES: The meeting will be held on Thursday, October 23, 2014 from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. ADDRESSES: National Archives Building at 700 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC, Room 105. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Denise LeBeck at 301–837–3250 or denise.lebeck@nara.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Meeting attendees may enter from Pennsylvania Avenue entrance. Photo identification will be required. No visitor parking is available at the Archives building; however there are commercial parking lots and metered curb parking nearby. SUMMARY: Dated: September 4, 2014. Patrice Little Murray, Committee Management Officer. AGENCY: On July 31, 2014 the National Science Foundation published a notice in the Federal Register of a permit modification received. The permit was issued on September 3, 2014 to: Ron Naveen Permit No. 2014–001 Nadene G. Kennedy, Polar Coordination Specialist, Division of Polar Programs. [FR Doc. 2014–21563 Filed 9–9–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7555–01–P NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Notice of Permits Issued Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 AGENCY: National Science Foundation Notice of permits issued under the Antarctic Conservation of 1978, Public Law 95–541. ACTION: The National Science Foundation (NSF) is required to publish notice of permits issued under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978. This is the required notice. SUMMARY: Li Ling Hamady, ACA Permit Officer, Division of Polar Programs, Rm. 755, National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA 22230. Or by email: ACApermits@nsf.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: On July 2, 2014 the National Science Foundation published a notice in the Federal Register of a permit application received. The permit was issued on September 3, 2014 to: BILLING CODE 7515–01U–P Dr. Terrie M. Williams Permit No. 2015–003 NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION tkelley on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Li Ling Hamady, ACA Permit Officer, Division of Polar Programs, Rm. 755, National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA 22230. Or by email: ACApermits@nsf.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: [FR Doc. 2014–21558 Filed 9–9–14; 8:45 am] Notice of Permits Issued Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 National Science Foundation. Notice of permits issued under the Antarctic Conservation of 1978, Pub. L. 95–541. AGENCY: ACTION: 19:04 Sep 09, 2014 NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Advisory Committee on the Presidential Library-Foundation Partnerships VerDate Mar<15>2010 The National Science Foundation (NSF) is required to publish notice of permits issued under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978. This is the required notice. SUMMARY: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: BILLING CODE 4510–24–P Jkt 232001 53791 [FR Doc. 2014–21564 Filed 9–9–14; 8:45 am] PO 00000 Frm 00108 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 National Science Foundation. Notice of Permit Applications Received under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978, Public Law 95–541. ACTION: The National Science Foundation (NSF) is required to publish a notice of permit applications received to conduct activities regulated under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978. NSF has published regulations under the Antarctic Conservation Act at Title 45 Part 670 of the Code of Federal Regulations. This is the required notice of permit applications received. DATES: Interested parties are invited to submit written data, comments, or views with respect to this permit application by October 10, 2014. This application may be inspected by interested parties at the Permit Office, address below. ADDRESSES: Comments should be addressed to Permit Office, Room 755, Division of Polar Programs, National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, Virginia 22230. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Li Ling Hamady, ACA Permit Officer, at the above address or ACApermits@nsf.gov or (703) 292–7149. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The National Science Foundation, as directed by the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 (Pub. L. 95–541), as amended by the Antarctic Science, Tourism and Conservation Act of 1996, has developed regulations for the establishment of a permit system for various activities in Antarctica and designation of certain animals and certain geographic areas a requiring special protection. The regulations establish such a permit system to designate Antarctic Specially Protected Areas. SUMMARY: Application Details 1. Applicant: Kenneth W.W. Sims, University of Wyoming, Department of Geology and Geophysics, Dept. 3006, 1000 E. University Avenue, Laramie, WY 82071–2000. Permit Application: 2015–007 Nadene G. Kennedy, Polar Coordination Specialist, Division of Polar Programs. BILLING CODE 7555–01–P Notice of Permit Applications Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978 Activity For Which Permit Is Requested: ASPA entry; Enter Cape Crozier to extract 3 5–10kg rock samples from lava outcrops. Location: ASPA 124 Cape Crozier, Ross Island. E:\FR\FM\10SEN1.SGM 10SEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 175 (Wednesday, September 10, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 53787-53791]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-21241]


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DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

Bureau of Labor Statistics


Comment Request on the Local Area Unemployment Statistics Program

AGENCY: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Labor.

ACTION: Request for comments on proposed action.

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SUMMARY: The Department of Labor, through the Bureau of Labor 
Statistics (BLS) and, specifically, the Local Area Unemployment 
Statistics (LAUS)

[[Page 53788]]

program, is responsible for the development and publication of State 
and local area labor force statistics. The LAUS program develops and 
issues monthly estimates of the labor force, employment, unemployment, 
and the unemployment rate for approximately 7,300 areas in the Nation. 
A major program redesign to improve the methodological basis of the 
LAUS estimates and update the geography and techniques to reflect 2010 
Census data was initially funded in FY 2011. After completion of 
various long-term research projects, the BLS plans to implement 
improvements to its estimating methods with State and area LAUS 
estimates for January 2015, to be published in March 2015.

DATES: Written comments must be submitted to the office listed in the 
ADDRESSES section of this notice on or before November 10, 2014.

ADDRESSES: Send comments to Patrick Carey, Local Area Unemployment 
Statistics, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Room 4675, Massachusetts Avenue 
NE., Washington, DC 20212 or by email to: LAUSFRN@bls.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Walter Sylva, Local Area Unemployment 
Statistics, Bureau of Labor Statistics, telephone number 202-691-6456 
(this is not a toll-free number), or by email to: 
LAUSFRN@bls.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Introduction

    The Department of Labor, through the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is 
responsible for the development and publication of State and local area 
labor force statistics through the Local Area Unemployment Statistics 
(LAUS) program. Currently, monthly estimates of employment, 
unemployment, and the unemployment rate are prepared for approximately 
7,300 areas, including Census regions, Census Divisions, all States and 
the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, metropolitan and small labor 
market areas, counties, cities of 25,000 population or more, and all 
cities and towns in New England regardless of population. In a multi-
year, multi-project initiative that began in FY 2011, the following 
prospective improvements to State and area labor force estimation were 
identified:

 Improve State time series estimating models by introducing:
    [cir] Model-Based Benchmarking that accounts for errors in the 
estimates
    [cir] Additivity of outlier effects that allocates level shifts to 
the appropriate State
    [cir] More efficient model structure that reduces processing time
    [cir] Enhanced smoothed seasonal adjustment procedures
 Incorporate American Community Survey (ACS) data to replace 
Census long form data that are no longer available as inputs
 Update procedures for developing other substate areas that 
employ innovative and dynamic estimating methods

II. Background

    A hierarchy of estimation methods is used to produce the State and 
area labor force estimates, based in large part on the availability and 
quality of data from the Current Population Survey (CPS), the official 
measure of the labor force for the Nation. Labor force estimates are 
generated for the nine Census Divisions utilizing time series models 
and are controlled to National estimates. State estimates also are 
developed using time series models and are controlled to Division 
estimates. Finally, substate estimates are developed by means of a 
building-block approach using locally available data and are controlled 
to State estimates.
    Improved Time Series Models. The estimates for States, the District 
of Columbia, New York City and the Los Angeles Metropolitan Division, 
and their respective balances of New York State and California are 
developed using signal-plus-noise models. These models rely heavily on 
monthly CPS data as well as current wage and salary employment 
estimates from the Current Employment Statistics (CES) program and 
claims data from State unemployment insurance (UI) programs.
    There are signal-plus-noise models for five additional substate 
areas and their respective balances of State. The areas are: The 
Chicago-Naperville-Joliet, IL metropolitan division; the Cleveland-
Elyria-Mentor, OH metropolitan area; the Detroit-Warren-Livonia, MI 
metropolitan area; the Miami-Miami Beach-Kendall, FL metropolitan 
division; and the Seattle-Bellevue-Everett, WA metropolitan division. 
As with the State and Census Division models, these area models are 
based on the classical decomposition of a time series into trend, 
seasonal, and irregular components. A component to identify and remove 
CPS sampling error is also included. Area models, like the Census 
Division models, are univariate in design in that only the historical 
relationship of the CPS is considered--UI claims data and CES 
employment data are not used each month in the estimation process.
    The monthly estimates of employment and unemployment utilize a 
tiered approach to estimation known as real-time benchmarking. Model-
based estimates (using a univariate form) are developed for the nine 
Census Divisions that geographically exhaust the Nation. These 
estimates are controlled to the National levels of employment and 
unemployment. State model-based estimates are then made and controlled 
to the Census Division estimates. In this manner, the monthly State 
employment and unemployment estimates will add to the National levels, 
precluding differences between the sum of States and the National 
estimates, and National shocks related to the business cycle or 
outliers like September 11 will be addressed in real time. Monthly pro-
rata factors for each Census Division are used to adjust the sum of the 
States within each Census Division to sum to the Division totals. 
Census Divisions also use pro-rata factors to ensure that they sum to 
the Nation. Substate estimates, including the area and balance-of-State 
models noted above, are controlled directly to the State totals, which 
are themselves controlled to the National CPS via the Census Division 
models.
    The new time series models introduce the following major 
improvements: (1) Model-based benchmarking, (2) additivity of outlier 
effects, (3) new model structure, and (4) enhanced smoothed seasonal 
adjustment procedure.
    The improved models will directly produce estimates that 
automatically sum to Census Division controls and thus eliminate the 
need for the external pro-rata factors currently in use to benchmark 
State estimates to their Census Divisions. During the benchmarking 
process the new models account for the errors inherent in each facet of 
the estimating procedure. These include State-specific CPS sampling 
error, State model prediction errors based on historical patterns, 
errors in the estimates used as a benchmark (Census Division & 
National), and the relation of these errors to the overall size of the 
benchmark discrepancy. This approach provides greater flexibility 
(monthly benchmarking adjustments will vary by State and by type of 
series), smoother monthly adjustment factors, and improved reliability 
measures.
    Another important improvement is that the new models allow for the 
additivity of outlier effects. Outlier estimates will be separated from 
the benchmarking process, resulting in the outliers being specific to 
where they occurred. Level shifts and onetime outliers will not be 
spread across all States within a Census Division so as

[[Page 53789]]

not to distort the magnitude of the outlier effect.
    The new model structure uses CES and UI trend estimates as 
regressor variables to explain trend variation in the CPS. This 
produces results similar to current bivariate models but with a major 
reduction in computing time. The new structure also allows for more 
flexibility for model development over the long term.
    An enhanced smooth seasonal adjustment procedure will be utilized 
to address the presence of residual seasonality that is noticeable in 
some of the smoothed seasonally adjusted employment series. The 
smoothed seasonal adjustment (SSA) procedure was implemented in 2005 
with the third generation of models. The SSA procedure uses the 
Henderson Trend Filter to isolate the trend of the series by removing 
much of the volatility that is introduced to the State's estimates 
during the real-time benchmarking process. However, even with the 
application of the SSA there still remained some statistical evidence 
of weak residual seasonality in the SSA employment series. (The 
unemployment levels and the unemployment rates were not affected.)
    To address this concern, the fourth generation of models utilize an 
improved smoothed seasonal adjustment filter. In addition to the trend 
filter, additional weights have been added to create a seasonal filter 
as well. The enhanced procedure will continue to remove the volatility 
introduced by real-time benchmarking, while simultaneously removing all 
residual seasonality that results from benchmarking to a seasonal 
series.
    Incorporation of American Community Survey. For the 2010 Census, 
the long- and short-form questionnaires used from 1940 to 2000 were 
replaced by a single questionnaire asking 10 questions. The more 
detailed socio-economic data once obtained by the long-form 
questionnaire are now provided by the American Community Survey (ACS). 
The LAUS program had been reliant on the long form data as the basis 
for developing substate estimates for self-employed, unpaid family 
workers, private household workers, and agricultural workers throughout 
the decade. These data elements represent employment that is either not 
covered by unemployment insurance compensation programs or not included 
in the payroll survey data CES, thus the Census long form had been the 
sole source for this type of information at the local level.
    ACS data are issued on an annual basis and they do not represent a 
single point in time as did the decennial Census, which represented 
April 1 in the year that the Census was conducted. Instead ACS data are 
estimates that span 1 year, 3 years, or 5 years depending on the 
population level of each area. To ensure coverage of all LAUS 
geography, which includes areas with 25,000 population or more and all 
cities and towns in New England regardless of population, the 5-year 
estimates must be used. In addition to covering all LAUS geography, the 
5-year estimates use the largest sample size and are the most 
statistically reliable of the ACS estimates. However, since they 
represent a 5-year span they cannot be directly used to develop current 
monthly estimates.
    The most current source of the needed data inputs is the CPS which 
does not have the geographic detail of the ACS. The proposed 
methodology will utilize the strengths of the CPS and the ACS to 
develop monthly estimates of self-employed, unpaid family, and private 
household workers (collectively known as ``all-other'' employment) and 
agricultural workers at the needed level of geography.
    Enhanced procedures for developing other substate areas. Utilizing 
ACS data to replace the Census long form data facilitated the 
enhancement of some of the substate methodologies making up the 
building-block approach used to develop independent substate estimates. 
Revisions are proposed for the methodology of adjusting place-of-work 
data to a place-of-residence basis, the estimation of what is known as 
``all-other'' employment, the estimation of agricultural employment, 
and the estimation of agricultural unemployment not covered by 
unemployment insurance. In addition, substate estimates will be 
developed at the county level rather than the labor market area level. 
A brief discussion of the new methodologies is below.
    Place-of-Work Residency Adjustment. The LAUS program uses the same 
labor force concepts as the CPS. Thus employment inputs from the CES 
and Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) programs, which are 
based on place-of-work, must be adjusted to reflect the worker's place 
of residence per the CPS. To accomplish this, Dynamic Residency Ratios 
(DRRs) are applied to CES and QCEW employment inputs for LAUS 
estimation. This methodology assumes that resident employment in an 
area is a function of the relationship between employed residents and 
jobs not only in that area, but in other areas within commuting 
distance. The procedure is more dynamic than the use of a single 
residency ratio insofar as job count changes in commuting areas can 
affect resident employment.
    In the past, journey-to-work data from the decennial Census were 
incorporated into the DRRs. Journey-to-work data were not available 
from 2010 Census due to the discontinuation of the long form. For the 
LAUS 2015 redesign, DRRs will be computed using ACS journey-to-work 
data in the same manner that they are computed now with one major 
modification. Currently, an area must be the destination workplace of 
at least 100 resident commuters (50 in New England) to be considered a 
potential commuter area. BLS proposes replacing these criteria with a 
percentage threshold. In the new set of DRRs, commuter areas will be 
limited to those areas that are the work destination of no less than 10 
percent of resident commuters. This will eliminate marginal commuter 
areas included in the previous methodology to account for potential 
future growth.
    The previous threshold for DRR commutation areas reflected the ten-
year span between Census journey-to-work data releases. The inclusion 
of a relatively high number of areas would accommodate any potential 
changes to commuting patterns over the ensuing decade. The new data 
source for DRRs, ACS journey-to-work data, is intended to be updated 
every five years. The increased frequency in the availability of 
commutation data will make the list of commutation areas more 
responsive to changing commuting patterns, reducing the need to include 
minor destinations which may grow in importance over time.
    Estimation of All-Other Employment. The current method uses Census 
2000 data as the starting point for the self-employed, unpaid family, 
and private household workers (known as ``All-Other Employment'') and 
moves it forward through time by applying the relationship of all-other 
employment to the nonfarm wage and salary employment estimate at the 
time of the Census.
    The new method uses the relationship of each area's share of ACS 
all-other employment to the State's total ACS all-other employment. 
This relationship is then used to allocate a monthly 5-year weighted 
average of each State's CPS estimate of all-other employment. A 
weighted average of the CPS estimate is used because, depending on the 
State's CPS sample size, the monthly estimate for this element may be 
volatile due to sampling error. This monthly 5-year weighted average 
consists of the current month's estimate averaged with the same month's 
estimate going back 4

[[Page 53790]]

years, with more weight placed on the more current estimates. This 
technique borrows strength from prior estimates while preserving 
seasonal trends.
    Estimation of Agricultural Employment. The current method uses the 
Census 2000 data as the base and moves the estimate forward using a 
monthly change factor based on a State's membership in a multi-State 
agricultural region.
    The new method for estimation of agricultural employment uses a 
similar approach as the all-other employment method. A monthly 5-year 
weighted average of each State's CPS estimate of agricultural 
employment is developed and allocated to substate areas using each 
areas' share of the State's total ACS agricultural employment. This 
method is State-specific and eliminates the need for an agricultural 
regional factor.
    Estimation of non-covered agricultural unemployment. This is an 
optional procedure that is currently utilized by 19 States. The current 
procedure uses an indirect approach for the estimation of agricultural 
unemployment not covered by unemployment insurance. It assumes that 
there is unemployment associated with employment and that the 
unemployment rate in non-covered agriculture is related to the rate of 
unemployment in covered sectors of the economy. To estimate non-covered 
agricultural employment, the annual average of covered agricultural 
employment from the QCEW program is subtracted from the covered 
agricultural employment estimate that is developed each month (as 
described in the prior section). Seasonal factors derived from CPS 
agricultural data from 1977-1982 are applied to account for 
seasonality.
    The new method replaces the annual average QCEW covered 
agricultural employment with a 1-year lagged monthly estimate of 
agricultural employment from the QCEW and eliminates the potentially 
outdated seasonal factors. Use of a 1-year lagged monthly estimate will 
incorporate seasonal trends into the estimate, simplifying the 
calculation and making it more responsive to long-term changes in 
seasonal patterns.
    New procedure for estimating employment and unemployment at the 
county level. Labor market areas (LMAs) are independently estimated 
using a building block approach that incorporates the new methods 
discussed above and other methods still currently in use. The 
employment component is comprised of non-agricultural wage and salary 
employment, all-other employment and agricultural employment. While the 
unemployment component is derived by summing the estimates of non-
covered agricultural unemployment (if applicable), total unemployment 
insurance (UI) continued claims without earnings, unemployed exhaustees 
and unemployed entrants into the labor force.
    The current procedure consists of first developing these 
independent substate estimates at the LMA level and then disaggregating 
them into counties and cities. With the exception of non-agricultural 
wage and salary employment, all inputs for estimating the components of 
employment and unemployment are readily available at the county level 
(Minor Civil Division (MCD) level in New England, MCDs being cities and 
towns). Aggregating these more geographically detailed data into LMAs 
is an unnecessary step that results in the distortion of these data 
when they are reallocated backed to the county level or MCD level, 
particularly for some of the unemployment components.
    The new method proposes to first develop the independent substate 
estimates at county level and then sum them to their appropriate LMA. 
This approach will result in more accurate estimates and will allow 
better operational flexibility for future updates to the geographic 
definitions of LMAs as counties (MCDs in New England) are the basic 
component of LMA geographic definitions issued by the Office of 
Management (OMB), as well as for small labor market areas as defined by 
the BLS.
    The current method estimates the labor force in LMAs, which are 
defined to comprise one or more counties (MCDs in New England). 
Employment and unemployment inputs are entered at the LMA level. In a 
multi-county LMA, county unemployment estimates are disaggregated from 
the LMA using the share of UI claims for the experienced unemployed, 
the share of the 16-19 population for unemployed new entrants, and the 
share of the 20+ population for unemployed re-entrants.
    The new procedures discussed above for estimating the employment 
components of all-other employment and agricultural employment produce 
these estimates at the county level. The non-agricultural wage and 
salary employment component, which is provided by the CES and the QCEW 
programs, is generally available at the LMA level and must be allocated 
into the counties that comprise the LMA. This will be accomplished by 
using ACS non-agricultural wage and salary employment ratios derived 
from the most recent ACS five-year dataset to distribute the CES/QCEW 
LMA data to its component counties (and MCDs in New England). This step 
is not needed for single county LMAs.
    All of the necessary inputs for estimating unemployment are already 
available at the county (and MCD) level. The new procedure results in 
more accurate county estimates by estimating the level of persons who 
remain unemployed after exhausting their eligibility for unemployment 
insurance benefits (known as exhaustees) at the county level and by 
avoiding the disaggregation of entrants from interstate LMAs.
    In the current method, if a layoff event occurs in a county that is 
part of a multi-county LMA, the exhaustees later associated with this 
event are not necessarily assigned to the county where the layoff 
occurred. This is because estimates of persons who have exhausted their 
eligibility for further UI benefits are disaggregated to a county using 
that county's share of persons who continue to be eligible for 
benefits. Using the new county-based methodology, each county will have 
its own independently estimated number of exhaustees, which will make 
it unnecessary to disaggregate exhaustees from the LMA level.
    In addition, unemployed entrants to the labor force are allocated 
from a Statewide control total to the intrastate parts of interstate 
LMAs using ratios based on annually updated population data from the 
Census Bureau. These entrants are then summed into their respective 
interstate LMAs before being disaggregated again using ratios based on 
population data specific to each interstate LMA. In some cases this 
two-step process has the effect of reallocating entrant unemployment 
estimates across State lines. Using the new county-based methodology, 
each county will be allocated its share of entrants in one step.
    Detailed descriptions of the current and Redesign approaches are 
available at the above address and at the BLS LAUS Web site http://www.bls.gov/lau/home.htm.

II. Desired Focus of Comments

    This notice is a general solicitation of comments from the public.
    Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized 
and included in the Notice of Decision on this proposal.


[[Page 53791]]


    Signed at Washington, DC, this 29th day of August 2014.
Eric Molina,
Acting Chief, Division of Management Systems, Bureau of Labor 
Statistics.
[FR Doc. 2014-21241 Filed 9-9-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4510-24-P