Federal City Digest

Federal City Digest

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Monday, March 23, 2009

Census Bureau Seeking More Accurate Minority Count

How many Hispanics live in the United States? That's just one of the critical questions the decennial census will seek to answer in 2010 -- and the answer will resonate for years to come as states seek resources and political power.

Hispanics, immigrants and inner-city minorities have historically been undercounted by the census. In advance of the giant information-gathering push, a House Oversight and Government Reform subcommittee hearing today assesses the Census Bureau's strategy for reducing the undercount of "hard-to-count populations."

Already this year, the Census Bureau has announced it will send out bilingual survey forms and seek multilingual door-to-door workers who understand regional subcultures. Those testifying include Thomas L. Mesenbourg, acting director of the Census Bureau; Robert Goldenkoff, director of strategic issues at the Government Accountability Office; and Jeff Tarakajian, executive vice president of client services for DraftFCB, a global advertising firm.

WHAT TO WATCH

-- The big public event of the week for President Obama is his Tuesday prime-time news conference, in which he will be seeking to reassure the American public that the bank bailout program will work and is not just a giant give-away to the rich. Today, he returns from a weekend in Camp David and will hold a White House event on innovation, clean energy and his budget.

-- A global downturn gets some local attention today as French Prime Minister François Fillon delivers a speech on the economic crisis at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. The Economic Policy Institute, meanwhile, assesses the situation in Mexico and the implications for internal security for our southern neighbor at a morning forum, "Calderón's Stimulus: Rising Economic and Social Unrest in Mexico."

-- At 6 p.m., Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner delivers the keynote speech at the opening dinner of the Wall Street Journal Future of Finance Initiative. Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, above, will also speak.

-- Signs of hope in the housing market or a continuing crash? The National Association of Realtors issues its report on existing-home sales for February in the morning.

-- The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics holds its seventh annual U.S. Missile Defense Conference and Exhibition, a three-day gathering at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center. Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl M. Levin (D-Mich.) and Gen. Victor E. Renuart Jr., above, commander of the North American Aerospace Defense Command and the U.S. Northern Command, speak in the morning.

-- Garance Franke-Ruta federalcity@washpost.com


© 2009 The Washington Post Company

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