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Data sources and the focus of Jobs-Plus on employment

S . These data, which are reported quarterly by employers in all states to their state UI agency, cover well over 90 percent of all jobs in the formal labor market and have been found in past research to provide adequate information for measuring program impacts.23 In addition, monthly data on the receipt of AFDC/TANF payments and food stamps during the same period will be obtained from the administrative records of state and local welfare agencies. This type of data has been used for many past evaluations of welfare-to-work and employment programs and is generally thought to be accurate and complete. Local PHA records will be used to obtain a limited set of background characteristics on residents, such as age, gender, race/ethnicity, how long they have lived in their current development, whether they move from it subsequently, and whether their household is receiving welfare. This information will be used to construct selected subgroups for the impact analysis. We refer to information obtained from UI wage records, welfare payments records, and local PHA records as administrative data. In addition to this information, a baseline survey has been conducted and a follow-up survey will be conducted in the Jobs-Plus and comparison developments. Information from the surveys includes measures of (1) community life, (2) outcomes and activities for children, (3) residents’ employment and the characteristics of their jobs, (4) family income and material well-being, (5) individual physical and mental health, (6) individual background characteristics, and (7) individual participation in education, training, and employment-related activities. The baseline survey was administered in the spring and summer of 1998 to a representative sample of household heads living in the Jobs-Plus and comparison developments. The follow-up survey was administered in 2003 to a representative sample of household heads who lived in these developments at that time. Hence, the survey data will provide a comparative before-after analysis from the housing development perspective.24