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.

Dedicated to Census Bureau Associate Director for Communications Steve Jost: 2010 Census payroll problems acknowledged and additional assistance to be given to employees

Though the Census Bureau’s Associate Director for Communications (and Spin Doctor in Residence) Steve Jost denied problems with the Census Bureau’s payroll system in comments he posted on this blog, Ryla, a firm contracted by the government to handle telephone complaints and questions about Census Bureau operations, has now acknowledged its own payroll problems for its employees. This is a true victory for and its loyal readers, as this issue likely would not have received the attention it deserves without your assistance. Let’s now hope that the Census Bureau follows suit in addressing payroll problems that have been widely reported by this site’s readers. Thanks to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution for the following:

By Leon Stafford

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Kennesaw-based Ryla Inc. is working to improve its pay processes after some of the 1,300 census workers the company employs complained they were not getting checks on time or were shorted work hours.

Ryla spokeswoman Karen Clay said the pay problems have occurred in spurts and the company is paying employees as quickly as its officials are notified. She did not know the exact number of people affected, but said it is small.

“There were some hiccups in our own processing in payroll,” Clay said, declining to be more specific. “Any payroll discrepancies are actively being worked on.”

Ryla, operator of one of Georgia’s biggest call centers, announced in February it was hiring the workers to handle calls for the 2010 Census. Pay is roughly $12-$15 an hour.

Another issue for workers has been pay stubs issued for $0. Clay said workers with those checks are employed by temporary agencies. Ryla pays the temp agencies, which then pay the workers.

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11 Responses to “Dedicated to Census Bureau Associate Director for Communications Steve Jost: 2010 Census payroll problems acknowledged and additional assistance to be given to employees”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    Great job, My Two Census! :)

  2. JAG Says:

    You’ve posted the entire Atlanta Journal article but did you read it before you posted it? This article is about a private contractor that is having problems paying it’s workers. This has nothing to do with Census takers working for the census that are having pay issues.

  3. Anonymous Says:

    haha Pwnd

  4. mandy_Reeves Says:

    okay well this is pointless….However, I did not get paid on a monday AGAIN. My check is late AGAIN. Off to call the toll free number and raise a little heck

  5. ConnieL in NC Says:


    I’m disappointed in your posting of this. It has absolutely nothing to do with the enumerators of the 2010 Census.

    As JAG says above, did you actually read this or are you just extra zealous today?!

  6. Anonymous Says:

    The Census and Census-related government contractors are having payroll issues.

    Thank you, My Two Census, for shedding light on this very serious issue. Many of us have to pay rent, bills, living expenses, etc.

  7. PayrollPatsy Says:

    While my heart goes out to all the Census workers having payroll issues, I’d like to offer a few suggestions from the admin side:

    1) Don’t scream and curse at the payroll clerk who’s trying to help you. It’s generally NOT OUR FAULT that your pay is messed up. Usually you’re missing a day or two of pay because your CL or FOS turned in 308s late.

    2) Don’t get snappish and nasty when, as we’re returning your call, we ask you to explain your payroll problem. Yes, you might have explained it to the receptionist, but all he or she did was write “payroll problem” on a phone message note and hand it to the clerk who’s calling you.

    3) Don’t scream abuse at us if you’re told we can’t help you at that point but will get back to you later in the day. There are times when we’re trying to meet a deadline to get everyone’s pay in the LCO out, or when we’re working to answer a question from the RCC, or when DAPPS is running slow or is down. We’re not refusing to help you — we just can’t help you right at that moment.

    4) It’s not personal. The chances that anyone in payroll knows who you are and is messing with your check to harm you are slim to virtually non-existant.

    5) Don’t give us a reason to reject your 308s. Use ink when filling them out. Get your employee ID right. Put your CLD number on them if you work in the field. Make sure your numbers are legible. Sign them, and make sure your crew leader signs them.

    Sorry to put it so bluntly, but after getting cussed out five times today for problems caused by the caller him- or herself, my patience is worn thin.

  8. aprilIT Says:

    Some people are complete morons when doing any kind of paperwork…ESPECIALLY their payroll timesheets. I guess they think it’s someone else’s job to fix THEIR payroll time sheet. No wonder the state of this country is declining the way it is.

  9. Anonymous Says:

    Payday – tomorrow, Wednesday, May 26th. Please check your direct deposits early in the morning.

  10. Yet Another Enumerator Says:

    @PayrollPatsy: Thank you for your insights into the Other Side of D-308s. Far from the image of the CB given by some here, of vindictive back-biting incompetents who live to screw over their underlings, I have a lot of respect for all those clerks processing that blizzard of paperwork, particularly daily pay sheets.* By comparison, my work as an enumerator was positively leisurely. Maybe it’s a good thing I didn’t transfer over to being a clerk, as my first CL (GQE) told us we could do, although I could have used the increased hours of work. Even given that clerks make less than enumerators. In my area (San Francisco Bay Area), we enumerators make $22/hr, clerks $16.

    Speaking of which, I had heard that census pay (for enumerators) ranges from $10.50 to $25 an hour. I had assumed that the highest pay rate would be in New York City, but accounts here say that the were getting less than we were here in SF. Does anyone know where this highest-paying area is?

  11. Yet Another Enumerator Says:

    * I was going to add: Whose genius idea was it to force everyone to fill out daily pay sheets? I understand that the 2000 Census used weekly payroll forms.