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In tight market, Census plans to hike pay in some places

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ORLANDO, Fla. — Faced with a tight labor market, the U.S. Census Bureau plans to raise wages for census workers in some areas and make it easier for applicants to get fingerprinted for background checks.

Bureau officials told members of the National Advisory Committee on Racial, Ethnic and Other Populations on Thursday that low unemployment is making it challenging in some communities to hire the 500,000 temporary workers needed to survey households during next year’s 2020 Census.

Census Bureau director Steve Dillingham said next year’s national head count is “on mission, on target and on budget.”

But some committee members worry he’s being too optimistic, given hiring and budget challenges.

The bureau on Thursday also unveiled a series of public service announcements to bring awareness to the count.

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