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Gore Claims Progress In Reinventing Government


Vice president sees advances in making federal agencies more responsive, efficient

BETHESDA, Md. (AllPolitics, April 7) -- Vice President Al Gore, the administration's point man in the unglamorous campaign to make the federal government work better, claims they are making progress.

Gore, who oversees the National Performance Review, told government workers and private-sector managers today that federal agencies are answering their phone calls and mail faster and treating taxpayers better.


"We've sure come a long way from the days when we weren't even sure who our customers were," Gore said at the "Reinvention Revolution" conference in suburban Bethesda.

Among the evidence cited by the vice president, based on a new customer survey by 150 federal agencies:

  • The U.S. Customs Service answers all calls within one minute.
  • People who call the Social Security Administration normally get through within five minutes.
  • The Environmental Protection Agency answers 94 percent of its mail within 10 days.

"We can't and won't stop until the job is done," Gore said. "That is what will amaze the bench-warmers, those who believe that reinvention was just going to go away, like all the other attempts of reform."

In the early stages of the review, federal agencies set standards for customer satisfaction. The survey represents an attempt to see how they are doing in meeting their goals.

Gore called the government's attempts to improve its operations "just common sense." It's been an ongoing for Gore as vice president, in addition to his interest in high technology, the Internet and the environment.

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