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March 22, 2011
In Reply Refer To:
1114 (172) P
Instruction Memorandum 2011-093
Expires: 09/30/2012
To:                   State Directors and Assistant Directors
From:               Director, National Landscape Conservation System & Community Partnerships
Subject:           Bureau of Land Management Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 Youth Employment
Purpose:  The purpose of this Instruction Memorandum (IM) is to provide information and guidance on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) youth employment goals for FY 2011.
Background:  Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar has pledged that the Department of the Interior (DOI) will create the “Next Generation of Conservation Leaders.” As part of the Secretary’s Youth in the Great Outdoors Initiative, the DOI has committed to:
  • Employing thousands of youth to protect and restore our environment, and revitalize our communities;
  • Educating millions of youth about our lands, waters, wildlife, culture, and heritage; and
  • Engaging youth from all backgrounds and all walks of life. 
Policy/Action:  For FY 2011, the DOI has established Bureau-specific goals for increasing youth employment.  The goal for BLM is to increase youth employment by 45 percent over 2009 levels.  The 2011 employment goals are cumulative over two years (2010 and 2011).
Attached is a chart with the 2009 baselines, the 2010 totals, and 2011 employment goals for each State.  It will be noted that some States have already met their employment goals for 2011.  The Secretary continues to challenge the Bureaus to not only meet but exceed their goals.  Because goals are cumulative, States that exceed their goals in 2011 will be better positioned to reach FY 2012 goals, which are expected to be even higher.
Youth employment may be provided through:  
  • Non-competitive hiring authorities, such as those offered by the Student Educational Employment Programs (SEEP), Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) Program, and other intern programs that may be established by the Office of Personnel Management in the coming year; 
  • Seasonal employment opportunities, such as firefighting; 
  • Cooperative agreements with partner organizations, such as service and conservation corps, other government agencies, community-based environmental and heritage organizations, and educational institutions, using the authority provided by the Public Land Corps Act of 1993; and 
  • Summer employment programs for youth ages 15-18 using the authority provided by the Youth Conservation Corps Act of 1970. 
For partner-supported youth hires, the following criteria apply: 
  • The youth must be employed for a minimum of 80 hours, which can be cumulative over the FY.
  • The youth must receive paid compensation from the partner organization. Compensation can come in the form of a stipend or an hourly wage.  BLM funds do not have to be used to provide compensation to youth hired through partner organizations.

Note that longer terms of employment are encouraged because they provide a more meaningful experience for the youth participant, allowing more time for mentoring the youth, providing them with employable skills, and instilling valuable stewardship and conservation ethics.

The Human Capital Management Directorate will be issuing additional guidance on recruiting and hiring youth through non-competitive hiring authorities and on Federal Personnel Payroll System (FPPS) Nature of Action codes that are being counted toward youth employment goals. 

Reporting Requirements:  Because the youth employment goal is a Department High Priority Goal, the DOI will be reporting on a quarterly basis to the Office of Management and Budget. For these quarterly reports, the DOI will collect employment data from FPPS.  Bureaus will be responsible for providing quarterly reports on partner-supported hires.  Guidance on providing those reports has already been issued:http://www.blm.gov/wo/st/en/info/regulations/Instruction_Memos_and_Bulletins/national_instruction/2011/IM_2011-037.html

Since that guidance was issued, DOI has further clarified the demographic information that Bureaus are to report.  The Secretary continues to stress the importance of reaching out to youth from all backgrounds.  To better track demographic information of partner-supported youth hires, a new reporting form has been developed (Attachment 2).  

Based on DOI’s consultation with the Department of Labor, it has been determined that it is within the Department’s purview to ask for group demographic data from partners as opposed to individual demographics of youth employees. States should incorporate reporting requirements into new agreements with youth partner organizations and should modify existing agreements, where necessary, to include reporting requirements.
Timeframe:  Effective immediately.
Budget Impact:  Minimal.
Manual/Handbook Section Affected:  None.
Coordination:  This IM was coordinated by WO-170, WO-700, and WO-855.
Contact:  If you have any questions concerning the content of this IM, please contact Mary Tisdale, Chief, Division of Education, Interpretation, and Partnerships (Mary_Tisdale@blm.gov; 202-912-7450), or Betsy Wooster, National Youth Programs Coordinator (Elizabeth_Wooster@blm.gov; 202-912-7454).  For questions related to non-competitive hiring authorities and tracking of hires through FPPS, contact
Anzanette Randall, Chief, Recruitment and Retention Programs Branch (Anzanette_Randall@blm.gov; (202-254-3314).
Signed by:                                                        Authenticated by:
Carl Rountree                                                   Robert M. Williams
Director, National Landscape Conservation     Division of IRM Governance,WO-560
    System and Community Partnerships
2 Attachments

Last updated: 03-28-2011