Labor Market Information: Trends and Issues in Funding of State Programs

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A briefing report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Labor market information is used to help make and assess social and monetary policies, tax and budget projections, and private investment decisions. Produced under cooperative agreements between states and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), labor market information helps provide an up-to-date picture of the U.S. economy and generate closely watched economic indicators, such as unemployment rates and the Gross Domestic Product. In addition, decisions about the distribution of billions of federal dollars to states and local governments depends, in part, on labor market information. In ... continued below

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United States. General Accounting Office. December 20, 2002.

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This report is part of the collection entitled: Government Accountability Office Reports and was provided by UNT Libraries Government Documents Department to Digital Library, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. More information about this report can be viewed below.

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Description

A briefing report issued by the General Accounting Office with an abstract that begins "Labor market information is used to help make and assess social and monetary policies, tax and budget projections, and private investment decisions. Produced under cooperative agreements between states and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), labor market information helps provide an up-to-date picture of the U.S. economy and generate closely watched economic indicators, such as unemployment rates and the Gross Domestic Product. In addition, decisions about the distribution of billions of federal dollars to states and local governments depends, in part, on labor market information. In summary, GAO found that (1) funding for the Covered Employment and Wages (ES-202) and Current Employment Statistics (CES) programs declined in real terms over the past 7 years; (2) BLS estimates the funding needs of states by adjusting prior year funding and uses formulas to allocate funds to states; and (3) workload and cost increases outpaced funding increases in the ES-202 program, which could result in data quality problems, according to state Labor Market Information (LMI) officials. BLS estimates LMI budget needs for states by making adjustments to the past year's funding and allocates appropriated funds to states by using allocation formulas. Specifically, in estimating the amount of funding needed for state LMI offices, BLS starts with the past year's funding, and adds an adjustment for cost inflation. In addition, for the ES-202 program that has a continuously growing workload, BLS adds an amount for expected workload increases. However, BLS's requests for funding increases to cover growing costs and workloads are not always approved. In developing its budget estimates, BLS does not collect information from state LMI offices to determine what those offices' costs or budget needs are because, according to BLS officials, BLS cannot readily verify such information."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • December 20, 2002

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  • June 12, 2014, 7:50 p.m.

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United States. General Accounting Office. Labor Market Information: Trends and Issues in Funding of State Programs, report, December 20, 2002; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc298655/: accessed October 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.