by wesley | 7:01 am, February 18, 2010 | Comments Off
Attention unemployed Colorado citizens! Currently there are government Census jobs available if you can solve 3rd grade level math problems and count how many fingers you have. Yesterday, I arrived home with the following flyer wedged in my mailbox lid:
Good pay and flexible hours sound pretty good in an economy with more than 10% unemployment, so I surfed over to the Census Website’s Interactive Pay Rates Map to see what we Colorado tax payers are paying for these new “created or saved” government jobs in Colorado. Would you believe we’re paying them $16.75 tax dollars/hour? That’s well above the Federal minimum wage of $7.25/hour. So that must mean the Census Bureau requires skills well above the minimum skill set of the labor force, right? I mean, the government even has a skills test it requires of interested applicants.
I puzzled over what it exactly takes to be a census-taking government employee, so I took a peek at the Census Practice Test.
What types of skills are evaluated on the multiple-choice Census Practice Test? Well, there are complex verbal and mathematical conundrums, such as…
Choose the one answer which BEST fits the meaning of the word in capital letters.
8. TRANSCRIBE –
A) to transport
B) to copy
C) to repeat
D) to exchange
13. .41 + 21.4 + 6.3 + 280 =
17. 2610.0 miles – 2554.8 miles
A) 55.2 miles
B) 56.2 miles
C) 165.2 miles
D) 552 miles
21. If you went from the corner of Bruce Street and Tannen Road to the corner of Spring Avenue and Suitland Road by the shortest way, how many houses in your assignment would you pass?
Let’s continue to Section IV of the Practice Test. This section is “designed to test a government Census employee’s ability to use good judgment in interpreting information in order to determine the best of several possible alternatives.”
Refer to the following outline of a chapter from a census procedures manual in order to answer questions 22 and 23.
Furnishing and Operating the Local Census Office
2.A1 Space for the Local Census Office
2.A2 Training Space
2.B3 Submission for Payment
2.B4 Special Instructions
2.B5 Administrative Operations Codes
2.D. Supplies and Equipment
2.D1 Receiving Shipments
2.D2 Organizing Supplies
2.D3 Storing Small Items
2.D4 Repair of Office Machines
2.D5 Requests for Supplies
2.D6 Purchase of Supplies and Equipment
2.E. Rental of Office Equipment
2.E1 Pre-Arranged Rental
2.E2 Local Census Office Rentals
2.E3 Delivery Acceptances
2.E4 Payment of Rental Bills
2.F. Rental of Automobiles
2.F1 Report Days Rented
2.F2 Forward Trip Tickets
2.H. Local Census Office Layout
2.H1 Administrative Area
2.H2 Supply Area
2.H3 Processing Area
2.H4 Field Operations Area
2.H5 Computer Terminal Room
And here’s your question:
23. Which section tells how supplies such as pencils, erasers, and paper clips should be stored?
I’m not sure which is more disturbing about Question #23, that we need to make sure a government employee (who presumably graduated high school) can read a table of contents, or that our government actually has written storage procedures for pencils, erasers, and paper clips? Personally, I’m just hoping that the questions on the actual Census that gets delivered to my door won’t be as challenging as this government employee entrance exam.
The anti-business agenda of the White House and Congress may be destroying the economy and competing with Jimmy Carter for who can create the most unemployed Americans, but at least our President has “created or saved” hundreds of thousands of (temporary) jobs for the Census.
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