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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
Employment and Training Administration
Washington, D. C. 20210

CLASSIFICATION

UIQC

CORRESPONDENCE SYMBOL

TEUQS

ISSUE DATE

April 17, 1991

RESCISSIONS

None

EXPIRATION DATE

April 30, 1992

DIRECTIVE

:

UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE PROGRAM LETTER NO. 20-91

 

TO

:

ALL STATE EMPLOYMENT SECURITY AGENCIES

 

FROM

:

DONALD J. KULICK
Administrator
for Regional Management

 

SUBJECT

:

Procedures for Release of Unemployment Insurance Benefits Quality Control (QC) Data

  1. Purpose. To provide State employment security agencies (SESAs) with guidelines for the annual release of Unemployment Insurance (UI) Benefits Quality Control (BQC) program data for Calendar Year (CY) 1990.

  2. References. 20 CFR 602; Federal Register Notice, March 26, 1990, 54 11112; andBenefits Quality Control State Operations Handbook, ET Handbook 395.

  3. Background. The final rule to establish the Unemployment Insurance Quality Control program is found at 20 CFR Part 602. Effective October 5, 1987, QC programs in the 50 States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico selected weekly random samples of UI benefit payments for investigation under the mandatory program.

    20 CFR 602.21(g) provides that each State shall:

    Release the results of the QC program at the same time each year, providing calendar year results using a standardized format to present the data as prescribed by the Department; States will have the opportunity to release this information prior to any release by the Department.

    The notice of procedures for the release of benefits QC data for the UI program was published in the Federal Register on March 26, 1990, at 54 FR 11112.

  4. Date of Record. The Department has established close of business (c.o.b.) April 26, 1991, as the date of record for State databases for computation of the error rates for the annual report of QC data. All information in the annual report will be based on CY 1990 QC cases that have been signed off by the QC supervisor by c.o.b. April 26, 1991. States must not update any CY 1990 QC cases after this date until they have reviewed the computations of the error rates and have reconciled any differences. Any data analysis supporting the annual report must be run on the database as it exists at c.o.b. on April 26. If States make any further changes, the data would differ from the data that the National Office (NO) will use to compute final results for CY 1990 and any reconciliation cannot be accomplished.

  5. Annual Report Software. The current software for the annual report will not change in regard to the computation of rates. The only changes are minor wording changes to the footnotes. States may run the rates as soon as all cases are completed. The date of record will be c.o.b. April 26, 1991.

    The NO will produce an annual report for each State, based on the QC cases as of c.o.b. April 26, 1991.

  6. Annual Report Format. The annual report format is shown in Attachment 1. It is divided into three main sections.

  7. Supplemental Data. In order for the SESAs to interpret the data in the annual report and provide narrative explanations of the data, the Department recognizes the need for additional information on cause and responsibility. The software that produces the QC annual report will also generate a separate report consisting of up to 16 responsibility categories and up to 6 cause categories. If the categories are equal to "0" the item will not be displayed in the table. Responsibility and cause data will be reported as percentages of UI dollars overpaid. The format for this report is shown in Attachment 4.

    In order to provide States with the greatest flexibility in interpreting the data, all possible responsibility codes and broad cause categories can be generated. States can combine categories which contain few sample cases, where appropriate. States should be aware that many of these percentages are based on small numbers of QC sample cases and may have relatively large sampling errors.

  8. Comment Period. QC annual reports produced by the Department of Labor will be transmitted to the States on May 10, 1991. Each State should review its annual report and if there are any comments submit them to the NO (Attn: TEUQS, Andy Spisak by May 31, 1991). SESA comments will be discussed and reconciled by June 7, 1991.

  9. Public Release by SESA. As stated in the Federal Register notice of March 26, 1990, (54 FR 11112):

    Each State will release the required data annually through established channels for disseminating State performance data. In accordance with established State procedures, the data must be provided to those who normally receive performanceevaluation data and to anyone else who requests the data. It is no longer necessary to publish a notice of availability.

    States must release their annual reports by June 28, 1991. If a State fails to release data in accordance with these procedures, the Department, in its annual review of State QC operations as specified in 20 CFR 602.31, will take appropriate action.

  10. Federal Release of Data. The Department will announce the availability of QC program data for CY 1990 through a notice published in the Federal Register on or about July 31, 1991. The Department's publication will be a digest prefaced by background information on the Quality Control program, and a brief discussion of how the error rate estimates were computed. Readers will be discouraged from comparing results among States. Each State's section, including its annual report and narrative, will be displayed separately.

    For CY 1990, the Department will continue the practice begun with CY 1989 data of publishing certain analytical information on aspects of the QC findings. After consultations with the Washington based stake holders in the UI system, it was decided to provide additional information in the QC annual report. Specifically there will be an analysis of the national under payments, individual State cause and responsibility information, and trend charts on over payments for each State in volume II. The frequency distribution data contained in volume II of the CY 1989 report will be continued in this report. State sections will be ordered alphabetically to discourage ranking and comparisons.

    If the Department determines that a State has failed to follow the prescribed QC methodology--in terms of sample selection, data collection methodology, or case completion timeliness--to such an extent that the data are not reliable, the Department will publish an explanation of the major deficiency in lieu of an annual report for that State. Also in accordance with instructions in the Program and Budget Plan, ET Handbook No. 336 (2nd edition), States will be required to address these areas by submitting corrective action plans for the upcoming fiscal year.

  11. Key Dates. The following is a summary of key dates for the public release of CY 1990 QC data.

    April 26 Update the annual report software electronically (DOL) to include footnote modifications
    April 26 Establish date of record for State QC databases (DOL)
    May 1-10 Generate annual reports for all States (DOL)
    May 10 Send annual reports to the States (DOL)
    May 13-31 Review (States) annual report
    June 3-7 Discuss and reconcile comments with DOL (States)
    June 7 Provide information on contact person and SESA Narratives due DOL (Note: State notification to DOL that no narrative will be submitted is requested)
    June 28 Release CY 1990 QC annual report (States)
    July 31 Publish notice in the Federal Register announcing the availability of QC data (DOL)

  12. Action Required. State Administrators are requested to:

    1. provide copies of these guidelines to the appropriate staff; and

    2. ensure that the following information is supplied to ETA Regional Administrators:

      1. the name, location, and telephone number of a contact person who interested parties may write or call for State specific interpretations by June 7, 1991;

      2. a copy of the State Annual QC data release by June 28, 1991; and

      3. copies of any press releases and or newspaper articles relating to the annual report released by the SESA for CY 1990 by July 5, 1991.

  13. Inquiries. Questions should be directed to the appropriate Regional Office.

  14. Attachments. (1) Annual Report Format; (2) State QC Sample Selection by Batch for CY 1990; (3) Format for QC Annual Report Narrative; and (4) Format for QC Annual Report Supplemental Data