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The Nation

September 17, 1987

The Office of Management and Budget directed the Census Bureau to shorten forms for the 1990 national census and an early-1988 trial run, delete some questions and revise the sampling procedure for the long form. The White House agency said that the basic 1990 questionnaire, which contains 17 questions to be asked of every household in the nation, is too long and some of the questions are too complex. A separate long form containing 44 additional questions, to be directed to one household in six, contains questions--such as those on rent and income--that many people "may either refuse to answer or give inaccurate responses" to, the OMB said.

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