Chapter 4.3: What Information is Available and Where to Find It

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Knowing what information is necessary for data analysis and obtaining it are two different issues. Sources for information can be the same for some areas; however, the availability of information can vary among organizations and is dependent on a number of factors. State and county organizations are sources for information and the planning committee will usually include stakeholders from these organizations. Local, private and non-profit agencies may not be as able or willing to cooperate, and confidentiality agreements may be necessary to obtain the information. An ongoing planning and program implementation effort will overcome barriers to full participation by these stakeholders.

The table below provides an example of the types of data sources that may be available. A brief description and potential sources for obtaining the information is provided for each data type.

Potential Data Sources

Type of Data Description of Data Data Sources
Size of Target Population Household location, number of working adults, children and vehicle availability. State or county human service agencies responsible for administering welfare programs. To avoid privacy issues names should be removed from the information.
Employment Location and availability of job opportunities which the target population may be qualified for (entry-level service / manufacturing industries). State labor and workforce development agencies. Others include employment projection data from the U.S. Department of Labor. Two types are available: industry employment and occupational employment that indicate which industries or occupations are likely to generate the greatest number of new jobs.
Childcare Facilities Location of childcare facilities. State and county childcare service agencies
Transportation Location and schedule of public transportation routes and the availability and extent of existing social service transportation, paratransit, carpooling, taxi, vanpooling and charter carrier service areas. Local transit providers, MPOs, social service transportation providers, Transportation Management Associations, and the FTA National Transit Geographic Information Systems (GIS) databases. The Bureau of Transportation Statistics also has available on CD-ROM maps of all major U.S. transit systems, however, they are not guaranteed for accuracy and do not include paratransit or commuter services.
Hours of Transportation Operation Frequency of transportation services and business hours for employment, child and day care facilities. Frequency of transportation services may be obtained from local transportation providers. Hours of operation for employment and child and day care facilities may be obtained from the individual business.

Final Report
May 2001

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