My Two Census

Formerly the non-partisan watchdog of the 2010 US Census, and currently an opinion blog that covers all things political, media, foreign policy, globalization, and culture…but sometimes returning to its census/demographics roots.

Breaking News & MyTwoCensus Payrollgate Investigation: The Census Bureau has failed to pay thousands of employees!

SHOW ME THE MONEY! It’s simple. When you’ve got hundreds of thousands of employees working for you, pay them on time. has received more than a dozen complaints within the past 12 hours from Census Bureau employees, at offices throughout the nation, who have not been paid on time. It is unknown whether this inexcusable error by the Census Bureau is a result of computer system failures (a problem that has plagued the Census Bureau for months if not years — even though Census Bureau Director Robert M. Groves said two days ago that the problems were fixed). Even though most of the 500,000+ Census Bureau employees who are out in the field this week are temporary employees, they still depend on this income from the federal government. A great number of these temporary employees were unemployed before their Census Bureau work came about, and thus are now living paycheck to paycheck. Unfortunately, when those paychecks don’t come, everyone is hurt. This is particularly damning because many employees lost their unemployment benefits to take Census Bureau jobs, and will have an extremely hard time getting these payments again once the work is finished.

(Interestingly, a marketing firm called GA1 that had a contract with the Census Bureau publicly accused the government of not paying them on time back in March, but it’s unknown to me at this time whether the situation was resolved.)

One disgruntled employee wrote me the following about her experience, which sounds more like a Kafka novel than an account of living and working in the world’s greatest democracy:

I started working for the census on April 12, 2010. My first paycheck was supposed to be deposited on April 28 but it wasn’t. I called my LCO that day and was informed they entered the wrong account number into their system. They asked me for the correct account number and told me that they updated the system. Next they told me that I had to call the hotline to start the re-issuance process for the missing check. I did as instructed and was told it would take 5-7 business days to be deposited into my acct. The next payday was May 5 and check #2 isn’t there and #1 is still “missing”. I again call the hotline (got the answering machine the first 20+ times) when I finally found a human they wanted to take a message, I refused because I had left countless messages with no return call. So I waited on hold for over 25 minutes. I was told again that the check would be reissued in 5-7 days. Week 3 pay date May 12, finally a paycheck! However it was only for the last pay period. #1 and #2 still missing. I called the hotline today and I’m getting the run-around. They won’t tell me anything! I called DOL and was told they can’t help because technically I’m a federal employee and they gave me another number to call. I called this number and was told they couldn’t help because I was a temporary employee. What can I do? I need my money, I am a single mom with kids to feed. Right now I’m wishing I would have just stayed on unemployment. To top it all off, the uncaring attitude of my LCO doesn’t help… they just say don’t worry. You’ll be paid eventually, we don’t know when but eventually.

To the hundreds of thousands people who are victims of this lax payment plan by the government, know that I am here to fight for you. Please submit your stories in the comments section below. This behavior by the Census Bureau is unacceptable. Today, I am calling Dr. Groves (the Census Bureau Director), Steve Jost (the Census Bureau’s Communications Director), the Public Information Office, and officials who are responsible for the payroll to get to the bottom of this mess.

For now, urges ALL EMPLOYEES who have not been paid to contact your Member of Congress and your Senators. Go to their offices if you can, but if not, lodge complaints by phone and e-mail. If you wish, please send me your complaints privately as well. MyTwoCensus is in contact with both Democrat and Republican Members of Congress who will hopefully be able to have some clout to get this problem resolved immediately.

UPDATE: Here’s another update from an anonymous Census Bureau employee Asheville, North Carolina, which to my knowledge is the only place where the media has actually reported these problems:

No one out of the Asheville office was paid properly today. I received 0. Three of my crew also received 0. two got 1 days pay/ 5 got 2 Days pay.
When manager raised cain was threatened with firing.
One enumerator had to borrow 8 dollars for gas to get home. One is threatened with eviction from her trailer.
Asheville LCO told another enumerator to expect to be paid on the 26th.
Asheville LCO said not to worry it was a nationwide computer glitch.
Asheville did not care that these folks had been out of work and need the money…especially the gas they have been buying to do the job.
Please do not use my name or email or I will get fired too.
We heard from other census workers in different cld that they also had widespread pay issues.
No one we heard from in Asheville district got the correct pay.
What can we do? If we raise a stink they will fire us.
The Census is now hiring at $9.00 per hour. we were hired at $11.50/ Are they trying to force us out to hire cheaper workers?

Tags: beaurocracy, Check, Chuck Schumer, , , , employee, employees, GA1, hotline, , Kafka, , local census office, , , , paycheck, payment, PIO, , Robert M. Groves, SChumer, , Steve Jost, , temporary, temporary employees, worker, workers

152 Responses to “Breaking News & MyTwoCensus Payrollgate Investigation: The Census Bureau has failed to pay thousands of employees!”

  1. Senseless Says:

    Anyone working with the DAPPS computer system knows how bad it is and expected a crash. DAPPS, Decennial Applicant Payroll & Personnel System, is outdated and crashes on a daily basis even before the additional 200,000 employees. Even with the problems with DAPPS I think the biggest problem is with the people doing the input. They are overwhelmed and working 24/7 with little training. I have been missing a check since February. I have called the 800 number numerous times and been told so many excuses when I did get to talk to a person. Now with a new operation in NRFU the problems continue. I was paid for one day. I was one of the lucky ones. I don’t know anyone who received the correct amount. When we spoke to the FOS he wasn’t fazed. He told us that he had been working for 6 weeks and hadn’t been paid correctly yet. The census expects us to go out and work in difficult and dangerous situations and tells us to hurry up and work faster and do more. It is unacceptable that we are expected to do this with no pay.
    Thank you for giving us all a voice and fighting to get us answers.
    Good Luck!

  2. anonymiss Says:

    I guess I am lucky this week, I received both my payment and my statement and they were both correct. Hope I continue to be lucky…

  3. Geewhiznrfudude Says:

    The retaliation has already begun in Asheville. LCO issuing reprimands in writing to anyone they can identify with the threat of discharge for “any other offense of any sort”. Rumor has it that an investigator from Charlotte office is coming to “weed out the troublemakers.”
    I will post more when I can. It is time to got out and get my dog bites, threats and curses for the day.


    Where is the Congressional oversight…..the world wonders.

  4. Stephen Robert Morse Says:

    @Geewhiz – remember, there is the “No Fear” of retaliation program for whistleblower protection. Let’s hope that it doesn’t come down to using that! SRM

  5. Stephen Robert Morse Says:

    @Geewhiz and others: Please feel free to send MyTwoCensus scans or digital photos of any documents or memos that you feel pertain to wrongful activities at the hands of the Census Bureau. Your anonymity will be protected. SRM

  6. old amfo Says:

    If every one of those people submitted a CONGRESSIONAL INVESTIGATION then something would get done. Until people outside the Census begin to take a closer look at this operation it will continue to be a money pit .

  7. Steve Jost Says:

    Fact Check:

    1. The Census Bureau successfully paid 575,700 temporary employees last week.

    2. You are carelessly conflating the computer system for our payroll processing with the system to manage our paper based forms processing.

    3. Your provide no data to support your overstated headline that we “failed to pay thousands of employees.” Instead, you provide two anecdotes of a handful of cases which reflect clerical issues, not IT issues.

    4. All of our Regions have special staff to address payroll payment issues, and we work to remedy any that are reported either in the next pay period or with a special handling process that includes an option for an expedited paper check.

    5. We have set up a national toll free hotline for our employees to work through any payroll issues. The nationwide toll free number is 877-233-4776. This number is in our employee handbook given to every new employee.

  8. ACL Dave Says:

    Our entire crew of 15 received paychecks which covered only the first two days of training – April 27 & 28. I was told by payroll person at the RCC it was the fault of the LCO not entering the data on time. Now that I see the problem is nationwide, I have to doubt the veracity of that excuse.

  9. ACL Debbie Says:

    Most of our crew received 1 day of pay yesterday for 4 days of training, pay varied among the crew. Most disappointing was the lack of concern from the FOS – it will catch up eventually. Steve Jost reports that 575,700 people were paid last week, but did they receive a full weeks pay? Florida

  10. old amfo Says:

    Just like most places I have worked for getting the first paycheck is always a tough evolution. I have to give the Census a pass on this one. I honestly believe that they get 99.9% of all paychecks into peoples hands on time. The Census does far better then the 15-20 % of trainees that show up at training without routing numbers or ID info. I also feel the pain of the poor AMFO who has to answer for another department when he is at the peak of his or her operational hell. I feel their pain but still they should treat their people better then their chain of command treats them.

  11. DisgustedCensusWorker Says:

    Steve Jost-
    I have called this hotline too many times to count and I get no resolution. Special staff can expedite paper check?? I have been told countless times that a supervisor will call me back! Good thing I’m not holding my breath because noone has called me back! I just want the money rightfully due to me. I have done my part. Now its time for the census to do theirs.

  12. mandy_Reeves Says:

    phew, FINALLY got my check yesterday! OMG…I was panicking. I needed to pay my car insurance with that money! Got it in 4 hours before the policy lapsed.

  13. mandy_Reeves Says:

    And I feel your pain everyone. I thought I was the only one! The admin at the LCO told me I wasn’t getting paid til NEXT Monday. I was like OH HELL NAW! I called the hotline and got my check yesterday.

  14. Stephen Robert Morse Says:

    keep the stories coming in.

    Mr. Jost – you clearly don’t know what’s going on at the local level…even those who are getting paychecks aren’t getting the full amount of money!

  15. old amfo Says:

    Inform you Congressman. Congresstional Investigations are the only real recourse the average Census Joe has.

  16. Henryetta Oklahoma | Henryetta Online Says:

    [...] My Two Census » Blog Archive » Breaking News & MyTwoCensus … [...]

  17. mandy_Reeves Says:

    my dad is a congressional delegate in Maine…if that helps any Mainers out there with issues.

  18. mandy_Reeves Says:

    I don’t know If I would picket, bc there are too many willing scabs to do the work, and that wouldn’t leave us with a leg to stand on.

  19. Senseless Says:

    Mr Jost:

    Fact Check:

    1. People were paid but not correctly. Being paid for one day out of four is not a success. There have been enumerators that can’t come to work today because they can’t afford gas without being paid.

    2. It is the DAPPS payroll computer system that also is a failure. We are not confused we know that there are 2 failed systems.

    3. We would be happy to have everyone of the thousands of employees send their horror stories if that is what you want. It was just a small sample of the problems. Believe us there are thousands more.

    4. Yes there are people in each RCC to deal with the problems but good luck getting through to them for help. Even the AMA in the LCO can’t get through or have calls returned.

    5. We all have the toll free number but get no answer or help. I don’t think those 2 people that were discussed in Stephen’s post are clogging up the entire system. Obviously there is a much bigger problem.

  20. old amfo Says:

    Picketing and walking off the job achieves one thing….. it brings attention to a problem . The Census needs to be looked at a lot closer.

  21. VonWags Says:

    What do you all expect from a GOVERNMENT AGENCY???
    (“I’m from the government, I’m here to help”)
    And there are TWO people living at my residence. That’s the only question I am required by the Constitution to answer.

  22. DisgustedCensusWorker Says:

    Its more than obvoius that Mr. Jost doesn’t know what he is talking about. I just called the hotline and after another 16 calls before I actually reached a live person, I was told that my re-issuance for 2 missing checks is still being processed and when they get the money returned from whoever got my checks deposited into their account it will take another 7-10 business days for it to reach me. I asked what if they don’t notify the bank that they have money in their account that shouldn’t be there? Then what? She told me there was nothing I could do.. no expedited check, no money, nothing! Its a bunch of bull. I’m so fed up and I just hope my FOS doesn’t make some snide idiotic remark like he has in the past. I just might get fired today :-) oh!! Then I can spill the beans about all the crooked things I have seen and been asked to do!

  23. Broke_Enumerator Says:

    I am unable to work today as a Enumerator since I only received one days pay yesterday. I had to use that money on bills and buy food for my family. I do not have enough cash for gas to travel round trip to my AA (approx 70 miles)and continue to Enumerate. Had I received my complete paycheck then this would not be a problem. As it stands now I am saving the gas I have in my tank for the weekend to continue to get some hours in. I was told the problem was with the courier at the LCO and that I will paid next Wednesday including the prior week. My problem is now I cannot get out and enumerate so my hours this week will be low. That means I will have low paycheck again in a couple weeks. In “Oregon” not North Carolina. Wondering if I will actually be paid “full” next week?

  24. Senseless Says:

    Broke Enumerator, The LCO can run a report and tell you which 308 dates will be included in your next check. It is easy for them to look up the info. The problem may be getting someone there to answer the phone and help you. Good luck!

  25. old amfo Says:

    The first sign of a weak FOS or CL is an inability to get properly filled out 308s back to the office daily. I use to start every FOS training session with this question ” whats the most important part of the Census ?” No one ever gave me the correct answer which is ” getting paid “. Getting people paid is job one !!!!

  26. donius Says:

    Same thing happened to me while I was working as a QAC here in NY. Long story short, they screwed up my direct deposit info. I was pretty much a chicken without a head. I was directed to several different phone numbers with no one having any idea of how to handle my situation. Eventually someone broke the chain of command and I got a hold of one of the head honchos for payroll in manhattan, who was very helpful btw. I called one gentlemen who is head of the payroll department at an LCO office in westchester where I was stationed. He refused to help me with my problem even after giving my employee ID, social security # – all the essentials to verify one’s identity. He then flat out told me “No I will not help you because I do not know who you are…” THIS being AFTER the fact I had given him all my proper info…(he even called me by my name)he said no when I had asked him to confirm my account/routing #’s for my direct deposit. The situation was already brought to light, he was well aware of it. Payments were made into my account sporadically, spurts of hours that i was paid here/there but it took them nearly a month to just pay me for my ONE day of training. (which btw they made sure to give us only 7 and 1/2 hours instead of a full 8) After that the direct deposit’s would come in out of order. I would be paid for week 2 while week 1 was still in limbo, eventually weeks 3 and 1 were paid simultaneously, so on and so forth…

    Talk about red tape :-\

  27. donius Says:

    Also the phone # 1-888-505-2010 is supposed to be the “Help Desk” for census employees. All you get is a “This number is not in service” reply.

  28. NYWest Chaos Says:

    I know of 6 people hired in 4 different operations (recruiting, Field Ops/NRFU, Quality Control, Admin) who have told me of payroll problems that include:
    - an entire week pay missing (when she has the 308 copies that show approval)
    - shorting reimbursement of transportation
    - missing hours/days

    For all those who say that this is due to the admin dept overwhelmed since the massive influx of hiring for NRFU. WRONG! This is NOT a recent problem! I’ve been hearing of problems since January.

    I’m now sitting down at my computer tonight and making a spreadsheet to reconcile my pay! WHO WANTS TO BET I’LL FIND ERRORS?

  29. Geewhiznrfudude Says:

    To Steve Jost: Please call the number you just gave and list 28723 as the zip code. You will be told that the zip is “not recognized” I believe that you believe what you said is true. I do not doubt your sincerity. If you said that 575,000 checks were paid I REALLY DO BELIEVE YOU. You have no way of knowing that they were correct amounts and not a fraction of what is due.
    On payday I was paid zero. I had an automatic draft due on the 12th. Thank God my bank covered it but I was charged $35 in overdraft fees. Will you pay that for me…thanks.
    Today I was paid $311 and I am grateful but it was roughly half of what I was due. I spent almost that much on gas.
    Steve , I know you are proud of your system and the job you are doing but there are major flaws and real live people are suffering. One of my folks is facing eviction. She went off unemployment to take a job she desperately wanted and needed. Her unemployment ended the day she started work. She used her tiny reserve of cash to pay for gas. God only knows what she is eating as she tries to get back on her feet.
    The LCO told her “Do not worry. the next thing may happen next week but we will make it up on the May 26 deposit”. WTF
    Steve, just for kicks why dont you call the number you posted and type in her zip..28723. I did this three times on my lunch break. Is this not an IT issue? Just askin’
    The LCO made a statement to the press that this was an occasional problem and there was a “Learning curve”. She went on to say that the problem was with the employees not filling out the pay sheets properly. None of my pay sheets were returned and I was paid nothing on payday.
    There was not one person in any CLD in my area who got their full paycheck. No one did! There is a systemic problem and all we get from management is “It’s a computer glitch”
    Your post was very defensive. Let’s stop cover-your-ass posture and try to figure out what you can do to get the money out to the folks who are actually doing the work.
    It may be that the LCO or RCC did not enter the pay sheets or may be that the software you are forced to use is bad ( I really think I could puke a better system than this but that is just me) or it may be some other thing I do not know about. I do not care. Steve, please be a part of the solution. Do not defend a flawed system. We like you. We do n ot like what has happened to us.

  30. brokecensusworker Says:

    I was supposed to get paid wed may,12th 2010 my first paycheck , i had it direct deposited and i checked my bank account it wasnt there , i called the bank, i called my cl he said he turned in my work, i called the office they said they couldnt find my folder or my direct deposit form or my id number either and if they couldnt i really wasnt considered hired on yet. so now they are giving me the run around , still no money, they say i will get it next week which sucks becuase i have bills to pay and i been busting my a** doing this work for almost three weeks in a horrible neighborhood i have been walking to the meeting spot because i cant afford bus fare, and my body hurts so bad, i was threatened once by a lady she said if i come back one more time she will shoot me and so i put refused on it wrote info comm and they keep telling me to go back, i do not feel as if they care for my safety , i also had to leave my phone number on nv’s and someone was prank calling me saying i was the feds, and no1 seemed to care infact the cl told my business to the other co-workers.. im very discouraged and not sure what to do. im normally very shy but have gone out of my way to do this becuase i need the money to get a car for once, smh, i am ready to blow up but am trying not to be a whistleblower becuase we all know the gov will find my a** and have me delt with. i dont know why this has to happen to me.

  31. Anonymous NE Says:

    I’ve seen it first hand of AMA’s and full admin departments that are woefully inept……AMFO’s that can’t read nor approve properly 308′s…AMQA’s that basically just sign-oo on 308′s to get them “off their desk”..AMR’s that don’t even check the milegae or expenses submitted (see partnership ) When hiring is done at such a number for NRFU, and the RCC doesn’t understand that the influx of paperwork, ESPECIALLY direct deposit forms that needs to be checked and double-checked, there will be scores of people not getting paid…and OH BY THE WAY what about the employees that work true OT and not getting paid for it…interesting how the RCC, especially the one here in NY, turns it’s head towards it…upper management is one word here…pathetic

  32. DisgustedCensusWorker Says:

    Geewhiz- same thing happened to me this morning.. told me that my zip was invalid after countless times I entered a nearby zip and got through! Hahaha take that census- some of us are smarter than u think we are and we figure out ways around what I believe is intentional ploys to keep us from getting in contact with anyone.

    Brokecensusworker- good luck!! Seems like you’re in the same boat as me let me know if you actually get anywhere with these ____________. ( census prohibits profanity so you can fill in the blank)

    Also, I talked to the Department of Labor again today and basically told them that I needed to file a report regardless if they say they can’t help so-called federal employees. I am an American citizen working for my government and I should not be treated like I have been. He took the report and said he would try to get me any info he could. So I’ll post as soon as I hear something. I’m curious though has anyone contacted the DOL?

  33. RICHARD Says:

    In my FOS district in Manhattan, NOT ONE CREW LEADER was paid for their third week. The week we spent training the Enumerators. And as usual the LCO was “blah blah blah, mistake. Blah blah blah, next week.”
    I think it’s time to call the media.

  34. OutOfGasCensusWorker Says:

    I travel 75-110 miles each day in rural Oregon. Last week I got a check for 1 day of training that occurred 2 weeks ago. I used it for Gas and Diapers. Yesterday I got a check again for only 1 day. It should have been for 4 days. I went off unemployment for this job in hopes of making some money and a better life (crosses fingers). Now I am totally broke.. I used my reserve cash to buy gas and now I have a empty tank of gas in my car and 2 babies to feed. My LCO told me today all my 308′s okay and are now in system and I will get a check next week. I tried to explain I need the money ASAP and that I will not be able to work this week cause I have no money and need it now. Long story short, I went begging to the local church and my friend for assistance. The church helped with a few vouchers and a ride to town tomorrow to get diapers and food for my babies and a bit for me. My neighbor is census worker also and did not get paid but was able to help me out a bit too. It is at her house I am writing this. Now we both are wondering if we cannot drive to our AA and put in the 30 hours were “required” will we both be terminated because we cannot go to our AA’s and get our minimums done? It would almost seem to be a blessing to go back on unemployment and at least know I will get paid weekly. Thank God my rent is not due until the 30th, I just hope the rest of my bills can wait until I get that “Big” Direct Deposit the LCO say’s I will have next week. Steve Jost, This is obvious much greater of a problem then you perceive it to be. I hope you enjoy your steak and potato’s tonight while my family eats rice and canned pork tonight from my church’s food bank. Cant you grant a temporary one-time “HARDSHIP” payment for those waiting on a check for the 30 plus hours owed me still? My LCO says they cant. So it’s Beans & Hot dog’s for us for Lunch while you have a gourmet salad (maybe at Olive Garden)until I get my ride to use my vouchers. Sign me as a very poor Census Worker who is out of gas and mother with 2 other mouths to feed with no paycheck and no money.

  35. Anonymous NE Says:

    RICHARD…..same in Brooklyn and Queens and you’re right, LCO takes no accountability for it

  36. Geewhiznrfudude Says:

    Do NOT call the3 media unless you are ready to be fired!!!!

    The only Newspaper to report on this is The Asheville Citizens Times. They quoted a CL by name despite her plea to keep her name out. The RCC from Charlotte is sending someone over to crucify her Saturday. She said she was being “written up” today. She is a great CL and the top producer around.

    Try calling your congresscritters and Senators.

  37. Samantha Jackson Says:

    old amfo,

    You are correct. The number one priority is always to pay your people. Pay the people so the people will continue to work for you. Even in the event of a national emergency, the number one operational priority is pay the people.

    It’s not surprising that Admin is having trouble. They have suddenly gone to about four times the payroll volume they were processing two weeks ago. Not only that, it’s new hires filling out that payroll and they are making many mistakes. They are working more than 5 hours without a break. They are working more than 40 hours in a pay period. They are making mathematical errors, etc. Admin then gets errors when trying to process the payroll and it’s a massive headache.

    One of the best things a CL and enumerator trainer can do is train the trainees to fill out their D-308′s. When they’re wrong, give them back and make the trainee fix the mistakes. Over and over again, every day of training. Do not accept improperly filled out D-308′s. CL’s need to continue this practice in the field.

    Then there’s the issue of managers/supervisors putting excessive pressure on employees to get the job done at any cost. Scratch that. Get the impossible done in 40 hours or less or you’ll be fired. People are submitting hours for honest work they were expected to do. They’re probably submitting O/T that they are entitled to but the manager of their department didn’t get the promised CD-81 in to Admin now Admin has a big mess on their hands and errors in their payroll. Innocent admin clerks are now sorting the mess caused (most likely) by AMFO.

  38. Anonymous Says:

    Yes, it’s true. We were told by our CL that we would be paid by direct deposit yesterday. We still haven’t been paid – I called my bank.

  39. Broke_Enumerator Says:

    Thank’s Senseless, I got through to the LCO and all my 308′s correct and have been entered in the system. I will be paid up to Saturday May 8th next Wednesday(4/19)if no computer glitches occur again.

  40. Anonymous Says:

    Broke Census Worker, I believe you.

  41. Anonymous Says:

    Out of Gas and Broke_Enumerator, I hope the best for both of you.

  42. NYWest Chaos Says:

    @Senseless – your response to Mr. Jost’s five key facts is spot on! (I am a freelance communications professional by day, and census worker by night…and I saw right through Mr. Jost’s spin, as I have written many deftly-worded “non response” responses in my career!)

    @Samantha Jackson – your argument would be correct, only IF the payroll issues were limited to new employees who have never filled out the 308s before. HOWEVER, this is not the case. The payroll issues I have heard of are NOT new hires….most have worked for the Census on a consistent basis for more than 6 months (or more). I started hearing about payroll issues in February. As for the NRFU payroll issues, You could blame CL & FOSs for not submitting 308s on time or correctly ID-ing errors in paperwork….but that doesn’t seem to be the case either. (HOWEVER, I was trained to assist CLs/FOSs on new hire paperwork…and witnessed MANY giving out incorrect instructions on how to fill out paperwork…I had to make tons of corrections.) OK…if admin is overwhelmed…Census Management is to blame for not correctly anticipating the workload and adjusting the size of the department. (Many of the HORRID waste issues that I’ve personally witnessed INSIDE the LCO office could have been easily avoided with SIMPLE and BASIC time management & program planning organizational skills….anyone ever heard of a timeline? But when you hire someone to use a computer who indicated on their application that they did NOT know how to use a computer…..this is what you get.)

    @Geewhiznrfudude – remember the NO FEAR section of training. I think after following the proper protocols in the manual…the media should DEFINITELY be called. As a communications professional, I have contacts at many of the nation’s TOP media outlets (e.g. NY Times, Today Show, Wall Street Journal). Not paying employees properly is inexcusable. This is coming from a government who manages to pay hundreds of thousands unemployment checks on time each week….doubly inexcusable!

    PERSONALLY, I WILL NEVER TRUST CENSUS DATA AGAIN. What I find truly odd is that NRFU – RI (the reinterview) is NOT to check the quality of the data….it is ONLY to check if the interview actually happened (i.e. we don’t trust that employee actually did their job). The “BLAME” mentality rolls on…

    One day I will share my story of how I witnessed 2 FOSs blatantly VIOLATE the Equal Employment Opportunity policy (ahem…law!) in a room a 50 enumerator trainees….

    aaahhh….are we all having fun yet?

  43. DisgustedCensusWorker Says:

    Anonymous- have u tried calling the hotline number? I’m just wondering if you’re getting the same lame excuses that I am.

    Has anyone had their check deposited into wrong account and actually got it resolved. If so how long does it take? Pantry is looking bare and the tanks gettin low just wonderin how long I’m gonna have to hang on?

  44. Anonymous Says:

    Disgusted, I did call the hotline number which routed me to the RCC. The lady who answered said, “I think you will receive your direct deposit next Wednesday or the Wednesday after that”!

  45. Anonymous Says:

    We had one binder this week. No more binders until next week – maybe.

  46. Anonymous Says:

    The general public knows about our payroll delays and computer glitches.

  47. hopelessCL Says:

    I am a crew leader from Kansas RCC. Even though we gave tedious training and daily step by step instruction, one-third of the timesheets have errors, half are late. It’s a shame that the comments on this site is that the top priority is to get the enumerators paid. They should get paid only after they do their job. If they can’t properly and timely submit a timesheet they shouldn’t get paid. I wonder about the quality of the questionaires they are completing.
    I don’t know if its the failure of our k-12 education, or individuals’ lack of a work ethic, or laziness, or sense of entitlement, but I am totally discouraged.

  48. DisgustedCensusWorker Says:

    Just to make it clear, my 308s were filled out correctly. I have the pay statements that were mailed to me. LCO transposed a number in my banking acct. info into the system. I’m also a CL doing a good job and I have an excellent crew. I just want to be paid that’s all.
    P.S. LCO is quick to place blame on everyone else but refuses to take responsibility for their own mistakes.

  49. hopelessCL Says:

    What is your proof that the LCO “transposed” the number?
    Its disconcerning that CL’s who are responsible for managing their crew, the assignments, their time, etc, can’t manage their own finances so that missing a day’s wages throws them into a tizzy fit.
    You’ve been posting all day, have you been working for the census today?

  50. anonnrfu Says:

    Census struggles to solve IT problems in time for 2010 count

    With official count set for April 1, GAO cites performance problems

    * By William Jackson
    * Feb 25, 2010

    The decennial headcount already has begun in some places and with the official Census Day — April 1 — little more than a month away, problems with key information technology systems continue to plague the Census Bureau, the Government Accountability Office told a Congressional panel.

    “Although the bureau has made progress in testing and deploying IT systems for the 2010 Census, significant performance issues have been identified with both the workflow management system as well as with the Decennial Applicant Personnel and Payroll System,” Robert Goldenkoff, GAO’s director of strategic issues, said in testimony.

    Related stories

    Census prepares IT for 2010

    Census deploys Windows Mobile for field data collection

    Not all IT systems will be needed right away, he said. Some will be used in processing data over the next year, rather than in the immediate counting. But time for deploying and testing the systems is running out.

    “With key deadlines looming, it will be important for the bureau to identify the defects affecting the IT systems, test solutions, and quickly implement changes,” Goldenkoff said.

    Goldenkoff made his statements Feb. 23 in testimony before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs subcommittee on Federal Financial Management, Government Information, Federal Services and International Security.

    The Census is constitutionally required every 10 years, and the results are used to apportion congressional representatives and for distribution of federal funds. The count actually began Jan. 25 in the Inupiat Eskimo village of Noorvik, Alaska, north of the Arctic Circle. Although the bureau is supposed to conduct a one-day census on April 1, the count actually will be spread over several weeks, as forms are mailed and returned, and in-person visits are made. State populations for congressional apportionment are due by Dec. 31, and breakdowns of local populations for congressional redistricting are due by April 1, 2011.

    Goldenkoff called the 2010 Census “unprecedented in its scope and complexity” and identified several problem areas, including inadequate cost estimates, in addition to IT systems. Overall, the bureau has made progress in many areas in an effort to ensure a smooth and accurate count, he said, but he predicted that the process would not be easy.

    * « previous
    * 1
    * 2
    * next »

  51. DisgustedCensusWorker Says:

    Hopeless- my proof is that they have my direct deposit form with the correct information on it and they told me they entered it into the system incorrectly.
    As for the comment about working… I start at 8am everyday and work off and on meeting with my crew till 7pm. I post on here while I’m on off times via my cellphone. Thanks for the job evaluation.
    Last but not least… my financial situation. A day’s pay wouldn’t send me into a frizzy, however 2 weeks of missing pay approx. $900 does, since the census is my only source of income. You should try re-reading posts before you pass judgement on someone. Regardless of what amount of money is owed to someone, they have a right to it.

  52. JAG Says:

    I used to be shorted on every single pay check! The only time it was correctly processed was when the regular admin staff took leave. No, I’m not talking about the “typical government”….this happened in private industry!

  53. NYWest Chaos Says:

    I *Love* (note the sarcasm) when people try to defend the census. Usually these are the same people to tell you to stop complaining because you are getting paid to sit there and do nothing. I don’t understand how anyone can equate complaining to asking for work assignments (rather than just staring into space).

    Call me crazy, but I like to actually work for my money….and do not enjoy WASTING taxpayers money.

    I understand humans aren’t perfect and admins can enter data in improperly. But the wide-scale shorting of hours, days (and i’ve seen weeks)…has nothing to do with human typographical error. The complete “BLAME” lies in the MISTAKE the management of the Census made by not hiring ENOUGH staff (not to mention actually QUALIFIED staff) to process the data. I’ll bet you anything that no one changed the estimated admin staffing needs when the handhelds failed and 308s were implemented.

  54. Tired of PBOCS Says:

    Our office is experiencing very little DAPPS failures. And we only have people missing days off their paychecks and most of that is that the morons can’t fill out a 308 properly AND their Crew Leader can’t check them for errors properly. I hate PBOCS with a passion but DAPPS has been solid almost all the time. If people aren’t getting paid for entire weeks most of the blame lies in the LCO management namely the AMA. Our AMA has her stuff together and was well prepared to handle thousand’s of 308′s day.

  55. Former Census Worker Says:

    This what happens when you hire retards, hoodrats, non educated and lazy people to do the job!!! I was an enumerator in the Queens NYC …The whole set up from the LCO on down to crew leader was screwed. I quit because it was tooo much stress from our milking the clock unknowledgeable, lazy a**hole of a crewleader. Hopefully I get my last check on time. There should have been some kind of screening process besides the test to eliminate many of the people hired but then again hey its the US GOvernment when do they do anything correctly?!? Did anyone ever get fingerprinted? Because there was a whole fingerprinting kit sent to our training to be completed by the crew leader which was a complete FAILURE because he did not know what he was doing.

  56. Former Census Worker Says:

    Did any of you have to meet with your crew leader 3-4 times a week? to discuss bs and for him/her to tell you that you cannot claim hours if you do not have any completed cases? not NV but actual interviews

  57. Tired of PBOCS Says:

    Sounds to me like your LCO isn’t being run right. All crew leaders where to be trained on finger printing with the backup of finger printing specialists. I am reading some horror stories about NY.

  58. Former Census Worker Says:

    My crewleader was trained but he still couldn’t figure it out.

  59. Tired of PBOCS Says:

    LOL that is par for the course, like it is that hard to finger print.

  60. Stephen Robert Morse Says:

    Other than Mr. Jost’s response, I’ve got nothing from the Census Bureau in the way of a response on this issue…

  61. Stephen Robert Morse Says:

    This is a chart of how many people SHOULD be getting paid:

  62. Anonymous Says:

    HopelessCL: We had a CL not turn in our D308 forms for two days this past week!

  63. old amfo Says:

    GEEWHIZNRFUDUDE,…..I hope you follow up on the Crew Leader who’s name was mentioned in the local paper about pay issues. The fact that the LCO has to bring in someone from RCC to talk to the CL is a big sign of how weak the LCO must be. I am guessing that the fact that the LCO cannot get people paid should have been the first REALLY REALLY BIG SIGN that there are issues there . As screwed up as some LCO’s are at getting pay screwed up a lot get it done really well. I guess good training and management pay off. The rush , rush, rush , to get the field work done at 50% of deadline will really cloud the focus of the AMFO , FOS’s and CL’s. Eventually the RCCs will just approve unlimited overtime to everyone but managers to solve their problems. RTs should have picked up on the Admin weaknesses in that LCO a long time ago. I bet the RTs that were there were acTing more as spies then as mentors. RTs will make or break an RCC.

  64. Geewhiznrfudude Says:

    Steve Morse, If you read the newspapers LCO Asheville and RCC Charlotte are saying “No big deal”. Asheville says only occasional problems and then the fault of improper forms. Charlotte says 1-4% error rate on paychecks. Tomorrow RCC is coming to meet with FOS and all CL of 03. We are pretty sure that we are all going to be “Weeded out” as troublemakers.
    One of our unpaid enumerators had to borrow $8 for gas to get home. Have not seen him or heard from him since.
    The error rate on pay amounts in 03 was virtually 100%. I think we are going to be history. Say a prayer for us…LOL. Too bad. I was having fun and working with a great group of folks.

  65. Stephen Robert Morse Says:

    @Geewhiz – please make sure to let everyone know what happens at your meetings with the RCC folks.

    @Everyone – Any more problems out there?

  66. Anonymous Says:

    What the heck! I just received by pay stub in the mail: Net pay = $0.00
    Called by bank, no direct deposit so far.

  67. angrycl Says:

    I’m FURIOUS that my crew didn’t get paid on time (I’m a crew leader…and no, I didn’t get paid either, and yes, I really need it.)

    My AMFO read me the riot act about the widespread problems with pay in our district being a result of crew leaders not getting their d308′s in “on time” (said “time” changes about every three days…) and when I dared him to find a single D308 from my crew that was EVER at the office later than 9:30 pm ON THE DAY that my enumerators worked, he sputtered that he wished more CLs were as timely as I am. The only mistake that’s been found in my crew was on one of MY 308′s. Which I forgot to sign. Frankly, since I’m training one crew, running MY crew, and basically expected to do two thirty plus hour a week jobs WITHOUT going into overtime, I think I’m doing pretty good just forgetting to sign one 308.

    I’m only TIMELY because I have an excellent crew and a fine CLA. And I’m ENRAGED that they didn’t get paid and I’m even more enraged that my repeated phone-calls to payroll either go unanswered, leaving me on hold for forty-plus minutes, or result in me leaving multiple messages that are never returned. Give me the bloody respect to tell me something than “Uh, we’ll get back to you.” for the people who are doing such good work for the Census and just want to know why they didn’t get paid at all this week.

  68. DisgustedCensusWorker Says:

    Just got off the phone with my congressman’s office, they actually have someone assigned to all census related issues. Meeting with them next week to hopefully start an investigation into census payroll practices. Thank you Mr. Stephen Morse for leading me in this direction, it never crossed my mind to call his office. I will keep you posted on any outcome. Hopefully everyone who is having issues will do the same!!

  69. Broke Says:

    i’m an enumerator in Wilson, NC. i’ve worked 40/40+ hours a week since starting April 27th, and i’ve totally gone broke paying for gas. I was supposed to get my first check deposited wednesday…and i have yet to recieve it at all, whereas most others on my crew received partial pay for 1-3 days of work. most of them refuse to work this week, are working only a few hours, or have quit. i have still been working full hours–i can’t afford to work for free, however i can’t afford not to work. supposedly a grand total of 1,600 of the 308′s were entered in late or not at all, and it was a failure on behalf of the LCO, not the CL’s. from what i’m reading here, the CL’s are supposed to deliver the 308′s daily? here, all the CL’s turn them in on the same day. so there are hundreds of employees, producing thousands of 308′s, and these thousands are given to the LCO at the same time? where is the organization? i was elated to have a good-paying (if temporary) federal job, now i wish i had stuck with Tractor Supply or freaking fast food. i expected more from the US federal government. i guess that is where i was mistaken.

  70. Anonymous Says:

    Paychecks and binders – snail pace. Our crew was told today that we may be finished with NRFU in 1 or 2 weeks.

  71. Anonymous Says:

    Just read a “Tweet” article about “Census workers having it tough” posted today in Security World. It is difficult to not receive you paycheck on time to pay bills, etc. Earlier this week, I enumerated an area known as “crack alley”. Tenants were inside their apartments and would not answer their doors.

  72. Broke Says:


    this was just released to the media. if you didn’t get paid or didn’t get the right amount of pay, call the number and leave a message stating your name and the city/town you work in. after compiling the information checks should be issued. (as with all government related promises, it might not happen but it’s worht a try–and at least SOMEONE is doing SOMETHING!) here is the link:

  73. NYWest Chaos Says:

    Wanna hear something REALLY funny. My new Crew Leader (who I turned down the opportunity to be CLA for) told our group in training that if we work up to seven minutes past the hour…we are supposed to round DOWN on our time sheets! (So if I work until 4:07 pm….I have to mark my timesheet that I stopped working at 4 pm….But, if I stop working at 4:08 pm…I mark my time sheet as 4:15pm) He’s such an idiot.

  74. Tired of PBOCS Says:

    those are the payroll rules

  75. 'nough already Says:

    Everyone on my team was only paid for a partial week of training not the full week. But at least they got paid. I received an earning statement in the mail but no direct deposit to go along with the statement. That was three days ago and I’ve yet to hear from anyone. To make matters worse, we found out today that we’re out of books…in other words, there is no more work for our team. As of this upcoming Tuesday it will be three weeks on the job, the first four days were training. I was counting on being employed for eight weeks. I understood I might not get 40 hours every week, but at least I thought I’d get a paycheck before we ran out of work!

    I guess they are running it a little like the airline…they simply over hired.

  76. 'nough already Says:

    Oh…another thing…apparently getting our stuff done ahead of schedule has benefits for the bosses and CL…namely bonuses.

  77. old amfo Says:

    The only people that get bonuses are Managers and above . All FOSs and CLs get is a hand shake for a job well done.

  78. angrycl Says:

    I get a bonus if you end early? that’s news to me.

  79. ConnieL in NC Says:

    I’m in a county west of Charlotte, NC. Our CL was very gung-ho on everyone working eight hours (or more!) a day in order to make a good showing with many EQs turned in. Most of us think accuracy is paramount, not the sheer numbers. How quickly we progress is really dependent on whether the resident of the place is home and/or answers the door, anyway.

    So, today the CL says he has two binders left. It looks like we’ll be done by Tuesday/Wednesday. And, oh yeah, he let it slip that he hopes he’ll be in line for a data entry position now that he has done so well with cracking the whip on enumerators getting their EQs submitted.

    It’s a sad situation because we have enumerators who have lost their homes, been out of work for months and are really hurting. They were counting on the job lasting at least six weeks. The CL? He’s a 20 year old community college student living at home and this is his first “big” job.

  80. Anonymous Says:

    OK, what’s wrong with this picture? Our crew has been told that we may finish in 1 or 2 weeks. No binders until next week. Three training classes start on Monday for Replacement Enumerators.

  81. angrycl Says:

    I know a little of that. My understanding was that each LCO was told how many enumerators to have on each crew and they’ll keep training enumerators until they hit it.

    There are three CL’s in my town and we’re all fighting NOT to take on more enumerators (we’ve all got between twelve and fourteen per crew). As of right now, I have enough binders out and coming for each enumerator to do two binders. If they give me any more enumerators I’ll have to start splitting binders, which is a headache for me to keep track of, a pain for the enumerator, and means I have more people getting far, far fewer hours than they were led to believe they’d be getting.

  82. Anonymous Says:

    Computers down, no binders. We heard that our LCO staff bring “pot luck” food and eat all day long.

  83. Anonymous Says:

    We just heard that everyone will get a bonus who stays until the end of NRFU – including Enumerators.

  84. Geewhiznrfudude Says:

    The Mountaineer Newspaper, Waynesville NC.
    “Any census worker who hasn’t receive his or her full payment for work performed, or who hasn’t been paid at all, can leave their name with U.S. Rep. Heath Shuler’s office at 252-1651. The Charlotte office has promised the Congressman emergency checks will be issued.”

  85. porkaphile Says:

    I do not believe that anyone will get a bonus. That is crazy.

    I’m a CL and I’m also trying to protect my crew from taking on more enumerators. I want to keep what’s left for those who have proved themselves to be honest with their hours and conscientious with the work.

    I have never had a problem with getting paid. I started the end of March in GQ. No one in my first group has had a problem either. Most get paid on Wednesday but for some reason mine has always appeared in my credit union account early Tuesday mornings.

    My crew got their first pay this week from the training. Only one has had a problem but she moved twice since she started, didn’t have direct deposit, then she submitted a form for direct deposit to a friend’s account, then she changed back to a check request. So who knows where it ended up. One other person that requested a check was told it was mailed from DC on Tuesday and she got it today, Friday.

    We are very diligent with the 308′s. We make sure every box is checked and filled in correctly, added up properly, initialed if they cross something out. Our FOS gets them everyday.

    I have honestly had more problems with slacker workers than with the office or the management.

  86. Tired of PBOCS Says:

    porkaphile hit the nail on the head, as a CL signing 308′s if you want your people to get paid, make sure the time sheets are correct. This is a huge problem and if your LCO staff isn’t prepared, the wrong time sheets will just mess up payroll! I know I have done payroll and incorrect information on the 308′s can cause big delays, OR if the AMA isn’t a good one the problems will be set aside in lieu of getting in as many correct time sheets as possible.

  87. My Two Census » Blog Archive » Dr. Groves deflects discussion of 2010 Census and talks about 2020 instead…. Says:

    [...] team is at it again. What better way for Census Director Robert M. Groves to avoid talking about the failures of the 2010 Census than to discuss the 2020 Census? Even more shocking is the mainstream media’s failure to [...]

  88. My Two Census » Blog Archive » This post is dedicated to the Census Bureau’s Associate Director of Communications Steve Jost: More pay delays for Western North Carolina census workers Says:

    [...] though spin doctor Steve Jost, tried to Jost-ify the Census Bureau’s failure to pay its employees properly and on time in the comments section of this blog, this latest report from North Carolina details how Congressman Heath Shuler had to [...]

  89. Anonymous Says:

    No direct deposit by today. My crew will finish NRFU by Wednesday, May 19. LCO has printed and distributed all binders.

  90. Anonymous Says:

    I just read an article about the Florida Keys appearing today. They had a 97.5% return rate. County officials said this was inflated. Many residents called in to say that NV notices were left on their doors and no census workers returned. Residents called in to say they were not counted. Census enumerators will recount this weekend.

  91. Stephen Robert Morse Says:

    Send me the article please!

  92. ET Says:

  93. CensusCL Says:

    I commented on another post, but this is NOT just NC. My crew is on VA and the LCO in Newport News and our entire FOS district didn’t get paid for the hours they worked. I actually can’t think of anything or any part of the NRFU operation that hasn’t been a major screw up here in NN Va. I think the LCOM is responsible. His smarmy comments about how they play favorites at the Census, and how we all need to give “volunteer time” to avoid going into Overtime is nauseating.

  94. NYWest Chaos Says:

    I wish the IDIOTS who keep blaming NRFU newbies on not filling out 308s correctly would step back for a minute. I know of MANY who have been working since 2008 in NYC who were not paid last week. They are FULLY aware of how to correctly fill out 308s! Logic?

    I truly wanted to believe in the Census, and actually defended it for a while. I now believe that ANYONE who still defends the Census is the same person who believes that a 3 legged horse could win the Kentucky Derby.

  95. BB Says:

    I have to laugh at the idea that 308′s go directly from crew leaders to admin.

    In our LCO they all go to the NRFU support clerks who have nothing to do due the EQ entry system being down. The NRFU support clerks have not been trained in payroll and return 308′s to CL for the most obscure and trivial “problems” like any marks outside of the white space.

    Now to Steve Jost, whose absurd posting has had me write a complaint ot DOCommerce.

    “1. The Census Bureau successfully paid 575,700 temporary employees last week.”

    Patently FALSE. It may have paid that many but clearly there are many errors. We have had at least 100 people in our LCO complain they were shorted hours.

    “2. You are carelessly conflating the computer system for our payroll processing with the system to manage our paper based forms processing.”

    Actually the LCOs are doing this. :)

    “3. Your provide no data to support your overstated headline that we “failed to pay thousands of employees.” Instead, you provide two anecdotes of a handful of cases which reflect clerical issues, not IT issues.”

    Steve you provide ZERO data to support your claims. Post up a certified statement that you paid 575,700 temp staff with no problems! You cannot.

    “4. All of our Regions have special staff to address payroll payment issues, and we work to remedy any that are reported either in the next pay period or with a special handling process that includes an option for an expedited paper check.”

    LOL, having brain dead full time civil servants is th problem not the solution.

    “5. We have set up a national toll free hotline for our employees to work through any payroll issues. The nationwide toll free number is 877-233-4776. This number is in our employee handbook given to every new employee.”

    Meaningless catch 22. Call that number with a problem and you are referred back to your LCO

  96. maggie kaye Says:

    To hopelessCL
    IF we already WORKED for the hours, and the paperwork IS filed, then are we still not entitled to our fair pay?

  97. f8te Says:

    LOL Take that thumb sucking fools. Oh my mommy govt loves me. They gave me a job they wont even honor my efforts. This should be a wake up call to all true believers out there. They dont give two shits about you poor dumb folks. Grow up and realize the govt has now crossed the rubicon and are now the bad guys.

  98. DisgustedCensusWorker Says:

    F8te- unfortunately I’m starting to agree with you. I used to have so much faith in our government until I started to work for the census. As an American citizen working temporarily for the government I never once thought for a second that a simple clerical typo would result in two missing paychecks and no resolution 3 almost 4 weeks later. While at my previous job, a similiar situation occured in which the payroll company was given correct bank info but it was entered wrong into their system. Simple solution, they contacted the bank and withdrew the funds from the acct it was mistakenly put in. Atlanta RCC tells me that they don’t do that. They wait for it to be returned to them. Unfortunately if the person who received my two paychecks isn’t honest and doesn’t notify the bank to say, “hey this money doesn’t belong to me” I am told there’s nothing I can do. The DOL won’t help, which shocked the hell out of me. Apparently the government doesn’t have to answer to anyone. I need to change my username to DISGUSTEDAMERICANCITIZEN.

  99. mesmoke Says:

    I dont know about anywhere else but I do know this, I work for the census in LCO 2625 and if we have had any problems with payroll it was human error not a computer error. If you cant get you time sheet right or forget to get it in the office by payday then your not going to get paid. Its that simple, to blame it on the computer system is simply not doing your job of getting your facts right. There is two computer systems and the payroll system is working fine. The other system does have it’s problems I will agree, it does need to be fixed but payroll issues are 95% of the time human error. I have worked for the census now for over a year and have never had a issue with pay. Before you knock the census do your homework.

  100. Anonymous Says:

    Who wants to work for the next operation (following NRFU)?

  101. mesmoke Says:

    nrfu is the last big operation but yeah I wanna work till the bitter end

  102. anonymiss Says:

    I would love to work longer! The income will help my family.

  103. brokecensusworker Says:

    i just wanna be paid…i dont want to quit but i have become very discouraged from not getting my paycheck still…to the point where i feel like i dont want to go out untill i am paid. i am down to my last $1.50 and have to meet with the crew and cl everyday except sat/sun. plus the cla was supposed to pick up my completed eqs today and d-308 for this week and he has not shown up Yet that was 10 hours ago and now nobody picks up their phones. im so stressed about this. i will call the lco again in the morning , i hope they have found my folder, i have copies of d308′s so i may have to go up there but i will be walking. im thinking about just focusing my time on school becuase this has interupted my train of thought. looks like i wont be getting a car this summer so i can get my dughter to and fro to school. I have to pray for these people they really dont care about us..but thats only human right? for the ego and five senses to see it as every man for themselves..our world is unjust but so beautiful and the humans destroy it. i hope they fix this problem soon cuz im to the point where i dont care if i get fired, i will sue,then when i win the case I’ll move to germany.

  104. CLA Dave Says:

    DisgustedCensusWorker – Call the local office of your congressman.

  105. California FOS Says:

    I am shocked at all these reports of widespread pay problems. We are not experiencing that in my neck of the woods. I ride herd on my CLs to get their crews’ D-308s to me on a DAILY basis, seven days a week. I turn around and deliver them to the LCO, also on a DAILY basis, seven days a week. The CLs don’t want to hear me griping when they bring me 308s that are more than 2 days old, so they ride herd on their enumerators to get their stuff in on time (and when they don’t, the CLs call me and warn me that I’m going to get Joe Loser’s 308s late because Joe Loser just got all 5 for the week into the CL on Saturday afternoon). By 5 p.m. Sunday I have 98% of the week’s payroll into the LCO. There are usually 3 or 4 stragglers that I get in Monday morning before the noon deadline.

    On the admin side, our office has a competent AMA, a couple of really terrific OOSs, and a dozen or so clerks who take their job seriously and really work hard to get the stuff processed correctly and timely (even though I hear some of the other FOSDs don’t get their stuff in daily). DAPPS does have its “oops” moments and it does like taking naps now and then, but our office folks work through it and get the job done regardless.

    None of my 100+ employees has complained to me about paychecks not coming when they’re supposed to. I count my blessings (especially after reading some of your stories here), but if the complaints do come I am ready to do whatever it takes to get them paid. Isn’t that a supervisor’s job?

    Seems to me that the majority of the problems I’m reading about, at least as they relate to payroll, have more to do with folks in supervisory and management positions failing in their responsibility to look after their employees’ welfare, and less to do with technological issues or enumerators messing up their timesheets. If everyone would stop pointing fingers and stop and ask themselves, “What can I do to make this better?” — a lot of problems would be solved.

  106. NY Says:

    It’s both sad and comforting to hear all these stories in the comments – sad because it makes me lose confidence in government workers, but comforting because it assures me I’m not the only one. I was in a training group in April and the whole thing was a joke. Our binders were missing, we couldn’t go out in the field because they didn’t get us our badges on time, and the class leader was reading the wrong instructions and the trainees had to correct her on several occasions. I’ve kept touch with a few people from the class and none of us have received pay or work assignments since then despite getting near perfect scores on our training exams. We don’t even know who our crew leader is. My bag has just been sitting in my closet for weeks. I understand that it’s an intermittent job and that work can end anytime, but it’s a waste for everyone to train us if they really didn’t need the labor. It seems like they could have seen that ahead of time.

  107. Detroit region Says:

    NRFU is the 5th phase of the 2010 Census I have worked on & it has been my worst experience by far! I’m not sure how much was due to the CL & FS or those above. Here’s just a sampling of the things our crew was told: 1) we would be fired for calling the LCO with questions / complaints 2) we & our CL would be fired if we made a mistake on our timesheet 3) we could proxy a household on our 1st visit 4) my CLA told me to complete the hispanic origin & race questions based on observation for a respondent that didn’t want to answer those questions (I refused) 5) our CLA told us to complete hispanic origin & race based on someone’s last name 6) enumerators were completing EQS based on information taken from the county auditor website 7) quality definitely took second place to production. I really question the integrity of data being collected under these circumstances!

  108. DisgustedCensusWorker Says:


  109. DisgustedCensusWorker Says:

    I agree with you that things are not being done by the book. In my neck of the woods however, its going on in the LCO. What I find extremely funny is that when an enumator has gone 3 times to a residence where the occupants will not answer the door (which is supposed to be the maximum) and they have also talked to neighbors who don’t know anything about the household but refuse to give their name, the LCO will return the EQ because they need a name. So enumator goes out again and gets same info with a refusal of name. Where does it end? Its a waste of taxpayers money. Also, they will send back an EQ that is filled out completely except for the no box on contiuation forms with a info-comm form going into great detail on how to fill this area out and pg numbers in the enumator manual on where u can see to make a simple x in the box. Slight oversight but all the tedious forms is ridiculous and a waste. From what I’m told, the office people know its coming to an end but just want to prolong it.

    Mr. Stephen Morse should start a new page for all of us to post about wasted time and policies not being followed. It might turn out to be more popular than this one has been. I’m sure we all have stories to tell

  110. Anonymous Says:

    I agree with Disgusted. Our crew was supposed to finish by this Wednesday. Then, lo and behold, it’s a MIRACLE! Binders have mysteriously appeared before our eyes!

  111. 'nuff already Says:

    Am I the only one who doesn’t think the numbers add up? Specifically, the past few weeks employment numbers should have been higher to reflect the hiring of enumerators….some 600,000 plus temporary census workers nationwide? Are they playing the numbers simply to make the weekly unemployment figures look better? I have gotten to a point where I do not trust anything done by this administration.

  112. Anonymous Says:

    Yes, they’ve played with the employment numbers in order to make the unemployment figures look brighter.

  113. Ex-IT Says:

    One of the few good things about the HHCs was that they saved a ton of payroll paperwork. Now the LCOs have to process thousands of paper D-308s every day. Maybe they could have saved a lot of time, money and resources if they had kept the HHCs – even if just for the payroll handling and GPS.

  114. CLA Dave Says:

    If we turned in one payroll sheet a week that would probably do the trick, but the bureaucrats live to shuffle paper, the more forms the better.

  115. unpaid Says:

    still not paid.

    I bet the people at the top got paid.

  116. Stephen Robert Morse Says:

    If you still have not been paid, please share your location, so we can better track this…

  117. DisgustedCensusWorker Says:

    Still not paid- Florida

  118. anonnrfu Says:

    Still not paid NC.

  119. Geewhiznrfudude Says:

    We are still waiting in NC

  120. Senseless Says:

    Still not paid- Florida

  121. Anonymous Says:

    Entire crew not fully paid last week, WA; no additional paychecks received yet. CL received nothing.

  122. Anonymous Says:

    What is most insane about the overall situation is that they are training more enumerators!! We are out of work, out of books, and more enumerators are being trained. WHY???

  123. Anonymous MA metro Says:

    Paid for 20 hrs instead of 29 hrs worked.

  124. Anonymous Says:

    Answer; because tomorrow is pay day and unfortunately once again there is no money in our account we’ll quit with no money in our hands, they have new enumerators to cover our positions!! tomorrow is going to be 4 week in a row with excuses and more excuses

  125. Geewhiznrfudude Says:

    Just heard from Charlotte payroll. No one in Western NC paid out of Asheville LCO will be paid for 7th and 8th. They will pay the folks who were not paid or underpaid for the 5/12 payroll.
    I will lose 2 days on this check but it’s OK because they will pay me what I am owed from last week. LOL

    The good news is that we got the number of someone in the USCB who actually gives a damn. I will not name her but she is another peon like us…lol. We got the straight scoop on payroll stuff.

    What a mess. LOL

  126. anonymiss Says:

    Direct deposit is missing a day or mileage or something sigh.

  127. Unpaid in FL Says:

    Once again Payroll is short – Punta Gorda can’t seem to get it’s act together.

  128. FL Says:


  129. Senseless Says:

    Still short 2 days of pay but happy I got more than last week. I agree Punta Gorda can not get it’s act together. Another AMA quit and the OOS transfered to AMQA clerk to get away from Admin.

  130. PO'd enumerator Says:

    I just checked my deposit, and I’m short. I won’t know how many hours I was paid for until my statement arrives in the mail. This is grossly unfair to us. We’re on the front lines, taking the heat from the public, and this is how we’re treated??

  131. Clt Says:

    Charlotte NC employees checks short again this week, some didnt received any hours at all. Still havent received hours that were short on last weeks paycheck. No one will provide an ETA on when we will receive our correct amounts.

  132. anonymiss Says:

    Called regarding my missing day and mileage and reported it. Was told it would be resolved but not today….I expect that is a hard phone to answer today. But I spoke to a real person so that is hopeful.

  133. Heather Minnich Says:

    I just got a deposit made but it was quite a bit lower than I expected for 4 days of training with 155 miles each way and 5 days of per diem. When will get a paystub so I can verify if it is correct? Also do they take taxes out of our per diem and mileage allowance? I was told it was .50 a mile, that is the case, is it not?

  134. sw wa Says:

    1st week i was paid for 1 out of 4 training days. was told it would be in the next deposit. checked this morning and its still short. sounds like everybody on my crew was short again.

  135. CLA Dave Says:

    Heather – Mileage and per diem are considered reimbursement not wages and should not be taxed.

  136. Anonymous Says:

    Direct Deposit received and OK. We were supposed to have binders today – NO BINDERS. CL and CLA do not have blank EQ forms, no Notice of Visit forms, no blank 308 Time Sheets, no EQ continuation forms, no Info-Comms, … ???

  137. Enumerator R Says:

    I’m a southern Indiana enumerator paid for 1 out 4 days. Dealing with the LCO, Regional and every other office I’ve called is a nightmare. This truly is payrollgate.

  138. My Two Census » Blog Archive » Social networking is bad. Says:

    [...] Census employee sent SRM a tip about a few flyers the Bureau sent along with their paychecks (finally). One flyer covered driving safety (and please, everyone, do take care while driving). The other [...]

  139. Anoymous Census Worker Says:

    I work in for the Census buearu at a local office in NC. There many workers who haven’t received any pay or have not received overtime pay. Payroll department seems to be playing a game of cat and mouse with the charolette regenial office, who are not being very cooperative. Some of us have worked nearly a month and not received one pay check. I’ve noticed in various newspapers , the office is saying that workers put down wrong information for bank deposits, that is not totally true , my bank information was incorrect but when they looked up my paperwork, the information up there was correct, so someone who put the information in the system, put it in wrong. So far no paycheck and no definite pay date. And even more disturbing, in locally offices they allowing anyone who has nothing to do organize other peoples time sheets (308). That’s right anyone who is idle can help hanle time sheet, which is essentially other people’s money.

  140. anonnrfu Says:

    I got a FedEx Thursday with a check from Charlotte RCC. Remittance advice was : “LCO failed to enter payroll information in a timely manner.” The check was handwritten. I am astounded. They had been telling the papers that we were all to stupid to fill out a 308.

  141. WA Worker Says:

    WA state census worker here. This is my 3rd phase working for the census. While I’ve never had a single pay issue before this phase, I have not received correct pay this phase. The problems are affecting everyone in my crew of about 40 people. Some of us got a single day worth of pay in a full week, others got nothing. Ridiculous!

  142. My Two Census » Blog Archive » Dedicated to Census Bureau Associate Director for Communications Steve Jost: 2010 Census payroll problems acknowledged Says:

    [...] and its loyal readers, as this issue likely would not have received the attention it deserves without your assistance. Thanks to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution for the following: By Leon [...]

  143. CaliforniaCL Says:

    All the CLs in my district, including myself, have been “getting paid” at the enumerator rate. We have been paid fractions of our week’s work and at one to two week lags. We are also asked to work over 45 hours a week and not account for this on our timesheets – I had not planned on volunteering for the census.

    My enumerators were paid weeks late and with partial pay. Some of my enumerators have NEVER been paid. One of the CLs in my district has also NEVER been paid.

    We have spent an additional 15-20 hours a week dealing with payroll issues and that brings me to spending 60-70+ hours a week, 7 days a week for 2 months and if we ask for a day off or a partial day of we are threatened with termination.

    After making myself sick trying to get everything done, be a good supervisor for my enumerators, and doing it all without pay, I was terminated today because on Saturday I asked my CLA to collect 308s and EQs for me so I could have one day of rest in 2 months.

    I feel abused. I know that my FOS has been lying to me and my fellow CLs as we have discussed the discrepancies in information we receive. I know the Census does not expect us temporary employees to voice our grievances because we think the federal gov’t is too big to fight but I am going to the labor board and refuse to be treated like a slave.

    I advise everyone to keep diligent records of their hours and their communications with supervisors. Don’t let them give you excuses for why they are doing illegal things.

    Also, you should be getting interest on late pay.

  144. mandy pandy Says:

    I am getting a run around, and missed my check again yesterday. I get paid Mondays because that is when the previous weeks paper checks arrive. I was told they have too many 308s to process now, and they are backed up, so I will have to get my pay 5 days late from now on.
    I have to buy more pain meds from my gall bladder surgery I had on Thursday.

  145. Anonymous Says:

    We get paid tomorrow, Wed., May 26th by direct deposit – let’s see …..

  146. Anonymous Says:

    California CL, I’m sorry about what happened to you and am glad you are going to file a complaint with the Labor Board.

    Glad we have this My Two Census forum to voice our concerns.

  147. Enumerator anywhere USA Says:

    It looks like I got paid for a full week. Am I caught up? I’ll know once I receive my statement.

  148. PhillyCensus Says:

    So I started work on april 12th didn’t get paid till may 12th. Im still missing the 2 pay checks i was supposed to receive on april 28th and may 5th i made sure my bank info was correct on april 28th they said it would take 2 weeks from that point and its been three every time i call i get a different story today a lady yelled at me on the phone and said “what do you think you can just get money whenever you want like we can just snap our fingers and its there you got nerve for calling here bothering me with this and hung up on me” so basically im wrong for wondering why i havn’t been paid for work i did over a month ago and was told i would get paid 2 weeks ago.

    Whatever is going on with them they are way wrong you cant just not pay people im sorry my bank info has been correct for a month now and they still cant tell me why i havn’t been paid its ok though i called back and found the name of the lady that yelled at me and where she is located they wanna mess wit me this is philly they better watch it

  149. California FOS Says:

    CaliforniaCL, as long as your CLA didn’t SIGN your crew’s 308s, neither of you did anything wrong. Are you in the L.A. region or the Seattle region? Can’t wait to hear what happens with the labor board. I’d also call your congressman, if I were you. Good luck.

  150. anonymous Says:

    Several enumerators in our LCO still have delayed or incorrect paychecks.

  151. Barb Jones Says:

    I started enumerator job in late April. First 4 payroll deposits were made on time but the withholding was incorrect. I did a new W-4 to correct the withholding but still not sure it’s been corrected. A number of my crew colleagues did not get paid. Most of my checks were short a couple days but the missing hours turned up the following week. I finished my enumerating on Friday 5/28. The 6/2 payroll deposit failed to appear. Call the LCO. Fat runaround from very unprofessional staff, apparently high school students, much laughing and partying going on in the background. They said my acct. number had been changed. Nooooo–same acct. number for 30 years. They say they will fix but will take 5-7 days to get my $400. I argue. Want my money now. Brick wall. Call again today, 6/4. Demand money. Now they get mad because I was–uh–mad. Very cavalier attitude, downright hostile and rude. I go over their heads and call RCC. A lot more helpful, diagnosed the problem, trying to get expedited by supervisor but still say money won’t appear until next week. I believe the money has been stolen by partying LCO who spent it on cocaine for all I know. I will be amazed if I ever see my money from this week or the next check due on 6/9. Thank God I’m thru with the project or I would have to quit.

  152. April McLeod Says:

    Is there a class action lawsuit for the short pay, late pay, wrong pay? I know there is one for racial discrimination. I was a mapping clerk, then a Crew Leader. When I was a mapping clerk, I injured my knee in the parking lot – they refused to fill out an accident report and I continued working that week, with a knee brace – by that weekend, I could not walk – let my supervisor know I would be seeing the doctor – kept him informed about the doctor visit and the fact the doctor said I could not work for 2 days until my knee was better. When I went back to work following the two days – I was cornered in an office and asked if I wanted to fill out a workmen’s comp request – I said yes and I also wanted to fill out the accident report they refused to fill out when the accident happened. As soon as I signed the comp request- they fired me (this is a felony.) I asked the reason and one of the supervisors said it was because I failed to show up for work or call for two days – I showed her the phone calls on my phone to my immediate supervisor keeping him informed and letting him know when I would return – she said she would have to talk to him. I said I wanted her reason for firing me in writing and she refused, so I wrote it and dated it, naming her and the woman who refused to fill out the accident report. I left and was called 15 minutes later asking me if I wanted the job back. (apparently someone told her it was illegal to fire someone right after they file a disibility comp claim.) I took the job back, was doing the work of two supervisors above me because they were unable to keep things straight. I created a spreadsheet for my LCOM and personally input the binders that were coming in so we would have a real-time count for him to give to Atlanta (PBOCS was not working) and he kept promising me a promotion. The promotion was given to a “new guy” whom I personally witnessed putting binders in boxes to go out in the field without QCing them. I explained to him the QC process and he stated “they have been QC as much as they are going to be.” I reported this to my supervisor, her supervisor and the LCOM – the binders went out (wrong) anyway. After that, I was offered a job as Crew Leader – I worked for the census 5 months – during that time, none of my paychecks were correct, most were short and late. I had to go through my copies of 308s and try to figure out where they had gone wrong – I spent hours on the phone with the “payroll hotline” as well as hours in the LCO talking to payroll and going over these forms one at a time so they could figure out where they went wrong. They kept telling me they were not turned in on time, even though I was the one turning them in way ahead of the deadline. On top of the 40-60 hours I was working each week, I spent at least 20 hours a week explaining to them how my paychecks were wrong. I was forced to borrow money the whole time I worked for the census because I knew how much I should get paid, but it was always short and late. My entire crew of enumerators had the same problem, even though I was turning in their 308s in plenty of time, as well. I was even loaning my enumerators gas money so they could keep working. The entire management crew at my LCO was replaced right before NRFU because the LCOM was trying to point out what was wrong. At one point, I realized the data being input was incorrect – I pointed this out to the LCOM and even Atlanta and we were told it would cost too much money to fix it, so they knowingly let corrupt data go through. The stress of this job almost put me in the hospital; I had to see a psychiatrist because of the stress and anxiety. It was more than a month after I stopped working for them that I finally received my final check, but the months I worked as a crew leader, I was paid .50 less per hour than the promised rate.