Introduction ||| Contacts ||| Contents ||| Beneficiaries ||| Business ||| General Public ||| Law Enforcement ||| Natural Resource Management ||| Research and Academic Community ||| States, Localities, and Other Partners ||| Travelers, Tourists, and Outdoor Enthusiasts ||| U.S. Government and Federal Employees ||| Veterans

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Customer Service Standards for

Natural Resource Management

Agriculture (Department)

Forest Service

Provides leadership in the management, protection, and use of the nation’s forests and rangelands.



Our offices, worksites, and visitor centers will be open at times convenient to our customers.

In FY96, 85 percent of customers were satisfied with our office hours.

Our facilities will be safe, clean, attractive, and informative.

In FY96, 87 percent of customers were satisfied with the facilities used.

Our facilities and programs will be accessible to persons of all ages and abilities.

In FY96, 97 percent of customers were satisfied with the accessibility of our facilities and programs.

Visitors will always be welcomed with prompt, courteous service.

In FY96, 96 percent of customers agreed that they received prompt, courteous service.

Customers will be asked regularly to help us improve our services and business practices.

The FY96 survey collected and tallied specific suggestions for improvement.

Customers will receive the services and information they request, or we will explain why we cannot meet the request.

In FY96, 94 percent of customers received the information they requested.

Customers will be fully informed of the process required for grants, agreements, contracts, and permits, and we will respond in a timely manner.

In FY96, 91 percent of customers said the procedure for their request was clear and efficient.

Defense (Department)

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Environmental Management

Incorporates ecosystem management considerations in all aspects of its water resource projects, including those for navigation, flood control, storm damage reduction, hydroelectric, and recreation.



We will work hand-in-hand with states, cities, and municipalities to fund, plan, and implement needed water and environmental projects that meet federal criteria.

This is not a measurable customer service standard and will be deleted. The Corps will continue to engage in these activities and is developing measurable customer service standards.

When recommending projects, we will carefully weigh costs and benefits to the environment with economic costs and benefits, reconciling society’s demands with the vital need to sustain our natural environment.

This is not a measurable customer service standard and will be deleted. The Corps will continue to engage in these activities and is developing measurable customer service standards.

When requested by the Environmental Protection Agency or other federal agency, we will quickly apply our know-how in environmental engineering and management to investigate hazardous and toxic waste on Defense sites, and clean them promptly and thoroughly as funding allows.

This is not a measurable customer service standard and will be deleted. The Corps will continue to engage in these activities and is developing measurable customer service standards.

We will continue to work with the public and industry through our four research laboratories to develop new technological solutions to environmental concerns and to make them available quickly.

This is not a measurable customer service standard and will be deleted. The Corps will continue to engage in these activities and is developing measurable customer service standards.

Water Resources Operation and Maintenance

Operates 234 locks, dredges over 900 harbors, operates and maintains 383 major lakes and reservoirs for flood control, maintains 2,500 recreation sites, and provides hydropower at 75 sites.

We will publish all scheduled lock outages and maintain procedures for notification of unscheduled outages.

Corps districts provide notices to navigation interests announcing scheduled and unscheduled lock outages and meet with navigation interests to discuss timing issues for these outages.

We will coordinate and share information with federal, state, and local officials of potential flood conditions.

This standard will be deleted. Program performance measures are being developed as part of a comprehensive initiative to implement the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993.

We will maintain the harbors and rivers of America’s waterways so that they are open to traffic.

We and our dredging contractors dredged 234 million cubic yards of maintenance material during FY96, keeping open 12,000 miles of commercial inland waterway and over 500 harbors.

We will maintain all recreation facilities in a clean and safe condition, and we will treat all of our visitors courteously.

The survey conducted during the 1996 summer recreation season indicates that the Corps can improve in restroom cleanliness and in providing water safety information. Additional surveys will be conducted in 1997 and 1998. The highest rated categories were staff helpfulness, safety and security, and park appearance.

Water Resources Planning, Engineering, and Construction

Provides developmental capabilities for water resources projects affecting the United States, in partnership with state and local communities.



We will work closely with other federal government, state, and local officials to complete a definition of the problem with a goal of completing this activity for large projects within 12 to18 months. These studies will be federally funded.

The FY96 performance target: Complete 90 percent of scheduled reports within 12 to 18 months. Result: 50 of 52 reports scheduled (96 percent) for completion were completed in an average of 13.9 months.

We will work to develop a feasibility report of potential solution(s) for large projects within four years, for referral for action to Congress. These studies will be cost-shared.

Performance target: Complete 80 percent within the time standard. Result: 23 of 25 reports scheduled (92 percent) were completed within the time standard; in fact, 7 of the 23 reports exceeded the standard.

For those projects authorized, we will complete pre-construction engineering and design within two years. The design is federally funded up front. The local sponsor will be asked to share design and construction costs when the project is under construction.

FY96 performance data were not available at the time this report went to press.

We will provide the sponsor with an estimate of the construction costs and schedule prior to construction, and we will meet regularly with the sponsor to manage risks.

This standard will be deleted.

Waterways Regulation

Regulates the development/use of any work or structure in or affecting a navigable waterway of the United States and the discharge of dredged or fill material in all waters of the United States; authorizes 90,000 activities annually.

We will complete action on 70 percent of all standard permit applications in less than 120 days.

In FY96, 80 percent of all standard permits were completed in 120 days. In addition, Corps of Engineers Civil Works-Operations Division Regulatory Branch is in the process of finalizing a Regulatory Customer Survey form. The form will be used to solicit feedback on our performance from permit-holders, our federal/state resource agency counterparts, consultants, and other stakeholders in the Corps Regulatory Program. The survey form is being reviewed at Department of the Army offices and should be published in the Federal Register for public comment shortly.

Energy (Department)

Energy Resources: Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy

Advances the nation’s capability to deliver clean, efficient, reliable, equitable, and cost-effective energy services to the American people.



Increase by $50 million the sales of energy efficient appliances and building equipment through collaborations with industry and national appliance retailers.

We achieved the equipment sales objective of $50 million.

Add 100 industrial companies and two trade associations to the Climate Wise commitment, thus helping industrial partners improve their competitive position by recycling, eliminating waste, and saving energy.

We added 120 Climate Wise partners, bringing the total to 150.

Improve commercial building energy efficiency and reduce carbon emissions through additional Rebuild America partnerships.

We met the partnership goal by adding 55 new partners and retrofitting commitments for 200 million commercial square feet and 50,000 homes.

Help utilities voluntarily reduce carbon emissions by adding 40 new Climate Challenge agreements.

We exceeded the partnership goal and now have 630 Climate Challenge partners. Our utility partners remain committed to remove an additional 7 million tons of carbon from the air by the year 2000.

Save low-income residential consumers $450 million in energy costs every year by weatherizing 57,000 more low-income homes, for a total of 4.4 million weatherized low-income homes.

We weatherized 56,000 homes, just below the 57,000-home goal. Lower-than-anticipated budgets were the cause of this shortfall.

Reduce annual oil imports by an additional 4 million gallons by adding 15,000 alternative fuel vehicles to the existing 27,000-car fleet in 50 Clean Cities.

We exceeded the goal and added a Clean City in October.

Energy Resources: Office of Fossil Energy

Maintains readiness of the oil stockpile for emergency use at the President’s discretion.

We will ensure, by the year 2000, the readiness of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) to draw down its inventory of crude oil at an initial rate of 4.2 million barrels (MMB)/day within 15 days of direction from the President. Our success will be measured by meeting the following standards:

Degasify an additional 61 MMB of inventory to increase drawdown capability from 3.2 to 3.7 MMB/day and inventory availability to 524 MMB.

We achieved degasification of 68 MMB of inventory—compared to our goal of 61 MMB—and met goals of increasing drawdown capability from 3.2 to 3.4 MMB/day, while also increasing inventory availability to 466 MMB available for drawdown without any operational constraints.

Initiate an additional 22 percent of the infrastructure life extension program, thereby bringing program implementation to approximately 71 percent.

We initiated an additional 20 percent of the infrastructure life extension program—compared to a goal of 22 percent for all of FY96—even though SPR did not receive full FY96 program funding until June 1996.

Complete transfer or sale of all readily removable oil from the Weeks Island storage site to a more geologically stable site, ensuring the availability of that oil.

We transferred 88 percent of 72 MMB of oil—compared to a goal of 87 percent—from the Weeks Island storage site to other sites. We also sold 18 MMB of Weeks Island oil to finance the site’s decommissioning and general budget deficit reduction.

Environmental quality: Civilian Radioactive Waste Management

Finds solutions to spent nuclear fuel storage and funding.



Issue a revised program plan to determine the suitability of the Yucca Mountain site.

The revised program plan (May 1996) aligns future activities and milestones with the Administration’s FY97 budget request and with congressional guidance. The plan incorporates necessary steps to ensure an aggressive start on the interim storage of spent fuel.

Complete 2.5 miles of the exploratory tunnel and begin two test alcoves in the potential repository formation at Yucca Mountain.

By the end of September 1996, the exploratory tunnel had been bored to more than four miles and work on four test alcoves has been completed. The actual progress exceeded the schedule in terms of both distance and calendar days.

Environmental Quality: Office of Environmental Management

Protects human health and the environment.

Demonstrate new environmental technologies and systems and transfer them to private industry and federal facilities. Demonstrate over 126 new environmental technologies, knowledge that drives the nation’s future.

The key technologies listed were successfully completed. In FY96, 127 technologies were demonstrated.

Reduce environmental, safety, and health risks by cleaning up DOE sites and complete 238 environmental cleanup actions.

In FY96, the Office of Environmental Management (EM) completed 273 environmental cleanup actions. The completions consisted of 158 final remedial actions and 115 interim actions.

Stabilize 250 kilograms (kg) of plutonium residues and solutions at the Hanford and Savannah River sites.

In FY96, 482 kg of plutonium residues and solutions were stabilized. This includes 99 kg of plutonium solutions stabilized at Savannah River and 2 kg of plutonium solutions plus 381 kg of plutonium residues at the Hanford site.

Finish 43 decommissioning projects and 137 vicinity property cleanups.

Forty-seven decommissioning projects and 163 vicinity property remedial actions were completed.



Manage 348,211 cubic meters of high-level waste.

Reductions to inventory were 12,865 cubic meters.

Issue pollution prevention performance measures and waste reduction goals by March 1996 to be achieved by the year 2000.

The FY96 data indicate that 60 percent of DOE’s purchases of Environmental Protection Agency-designated items contained recycled or recovered materials.

Initiate 20 additional projects in FY96 that will yield net savings of at least $30 million over a three-year period.

A total of 22 projects were initiated during FY96. Quarterly field progress reports from the 22 projects indicate that the cost savings estimate of $30 million over three years is still appropriate.

Increase the frequency by which Environmental Management employees interact with stakeholders by establishing programs that engage individual employees with individual stakeholders at each EM site.

Since 1992, Site-Specific Advisory Boards (SSABs) have been established at 11 DOE sites. In FY96, a 12th SSAB was established. Two additional SSABs are planned for FY97. In June 1996, an estimated 750 stakeholders at 11 sites across the country participated in a national stakeholder budget videoconference hosted by the Assistant Secretary for Environmental Management.

Improve the distribution of programmatic information by filling orders for publications at the Center for Environmental Management Information within two business days from the time they reach the center.

At least 90 percent of publication requests have been filled within 48 hours of receipt. In calendar year 1995, the center successfully responded to 16,494 requests for information. In FY96, over 135,000 requests for information were filled (including World Wide Web inquiries). If requests involve budget analysis or other comprehensive products, the center’s staff will contact the customer with information on when they can expect a final product or conclusive response.

Increase the percentage of stakeholders reporting a "great deal" or "quite a lot" of trust in DOE from 26 percent in 1994 to 35 percent in 1996.

Results from surveys conducted in 1992 and 1994 show marked increases in trust and confidence in the DOE. The results of the third survey will be released in mid-July 1997.

Ensure that the business of DOE will be open to the full view and input of those whom it serves, consistent with applicable laws, regulations, and contracts. Ensure that EM decisions consider the input of site- specific groups.

SSAB and public participation are in the FY98 EM budget. SSABs provide EM with advice on policy issues and help ensure that stakeholder input is given fair and adequate consideration in EM decisions. Nearly 70 percent of SSAB participants feel that these boards have provided informed advice to DOE. Also, all steps for involving the public in FY98 budget formulation process have been completed on time.

National Security: Office of Nuclear Energy

Protects public health and the environment.

Safely deactivate surplus nuclear facilities and shut down and clean up surplus non-weapons nuclear reactor sites.

Environmental Protection Agency

Protects public health and the environment.

We will be courteous, professional, flexible, honest, and helpful in all dealings with our customers. We will actively listen so we can better understand what motivates our customers and how we can best provide the environmental products, services, and information they value, and be fully responsive to customer concerns and needs regarding our services.

Training options have been researched, and a program will begin in FY97. Surveys of permit applicants and citizens involved in the permitting process have been conducted in three regions. Some of the survey questions will provide quantitative data concerning this standard. Staff members across the agency have been encouraged to meet this standard.

We will answer all telephone calls promptly and will respond to them by close of the next business day. If the person receiving the call cannot fully respond to the inquiry, the customer will be accurately referred to someone who can.

Region VI developed a telephone use and training plan that is based on a two-week recordkeeping effort to determine call sources and problems handling calls and account for limitations of equipment. Implementation, staff training, and measurement of the standard will begin in FY97.

We will respond to all external correspondence within 10 working days of receipt. If we cannot provide a complete reply within 10 working days, we will contact the customer as soon as possible within the 10-day period to acknowledge and clarify the request, discuss what is needed to provide a full response, and indicate when a full response will be provided.

Freedom of Information Act and controlled correspondence systems track and provide status information to EPA managers. "Overdues" have decreased since the system and reporting were instituted. Training in and measurement of the standard will begin nationwide in 1997.

We will provide our customers with clear, easy-to-understand, timely, and accurate information about products, services, policies, and procedures. We will ensure that customers have easy access to information, available through convenient channels in various formats.

A recently completed survey of citizens involved in EPA’s permitting process will provide quantitative information concerning this standard. The Office of Pesticides Programs (OPP) used customer feedback to redesign and expand its home page. Information is easily accessible via the Internet.



Relationships with our co-implementors of environmental programs—the states, tribal and local governments, and other federal agencies—will be characterized by partnership, flexibility, and assistance that empowers them to expand their ability to deliver environmental protection.

EPA continues to work with the states on Performance Partnership Grants and on the National Environmental Protection Partnership System to decrease reporting burdens and enable states to focus on environmental results. OPP conducted nine public meetings, 30 site visits, and a regional conference related to its Worker Protection Standard (WPS). OPP plans to conduct four state-regional conferences to proactively involve states in decisionmaking and priority setting of WPS program goals. The Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program (PESP) has been working on improving customer service since its inception in December 1994. Last fall, over 50 PESP liaisons were trained in customer service. Each of the PESP partners and supporters is given a liaison from OPP who acts as the service representative to the partner/supporter.

We will seek customer input to inform our decisions on policies, programs, and rules.

Region V is holding focus group meetings on its reorganization and service standards. In developing Internet accessibility, EPA participates in the Federal Web Consortium which enables the exchange of experiences, linkages, and consistency among federal partners. In the Urban Wet Weather Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) Committee, representatives from states, municipalities, and the general public meet to identify and discuss issues associated with urban wet weather flows. In the Storm Water Phase II FACA Committee, representatives from states, municipalities, and the general public provide input to EPA on solutions to storm water environmental problems. In the Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) FACA Committee, participants provide EPA with advice on identifying water-quality-limited bodies of water, establishing TMDLs for them, and developing appropriate watershed protection programs for these waters. In the Effluent Guidelines Task Force, representatives from industry, academia, publicly owned treatment works, states, citizen groups, and EPA offer advice on long-term strategies for the effluent guidelines program and provide recommendations on how to expedite promulgation of this program. In the National Drinking Water Advisory Council, representatives from the general public, state and local governments, and public interest groups provide recommendations on guidance and policies related to EPA’s drinking water programs. The Pesticide Program Dialogue Committee (PPDC) established under FACA represents all customer groups and held its first meeting in July 1996. OPP has conducted nine public meetings and 30 site visits around the country realting to the Worker Protection Standard. Surveys of the permit applicants and citizens participating in EPA’s environmental permit process have been conducted in Regions 1 and 6 (NPDES) and Region 5 (UIC). The surveys will provide quantitative information on how clear, fair, appropriate, and effective EPA environmental permits are and how knowledgeable, responsive, cooperative, and available EPA staff are. A survey has been prepared that will quantitatively determine how successful EPA has been in working with representatives of delegated programs to improve EPA’s delegation processes so that they are as efficient, effective, and non-burdensome as possible.

Interior (Department)

Bureau of Indian Affairs

Serves as the steward for Indian and Alaskan Native lands and monies held in trust by the United States.



We will provide you with up-to-date information about the status of your claim, application, case, or inquiry on the day of your visit to our office.

No reportable results.

We will answer your telephone call in a pleasant, courteous manner and be responsive to your questions. We will return your phone call by close of business the next workday. If we are not able to assist you, we will direct you to the necessary office that will help you.

No reportable results.

We will respond to your written inquiries within five days of receipt of your letter, and we will seek resolution of your problems within 30 days.

No reportable results.

We will consult with and provide feedback to you regarding education issues under consideration through regularly held regional education consultation meetings.

The Office of Indian Education held nine consultation sessions throughout Indian country during the last year regarding issues that required an open discussion and joint deliberation of options between the tribes and Bureau of Indian Affairs education officials.

We will develop all new rules and regulations in partnership with tribes.

BIA has completed the final rule and regulations for the Self-Determination Amendments by working in partnership with a tribal advisory group which agreed to and supported the final document which was published in the Federal Register in July 1996. A similar effort is now under way to develop administrative procedures for the implementation of the new regulations, again in partnership with tribes. Another major effort that has been under-way since July 1996 is the establishment of two federal/tribal workgroups to identify BIA’s inherent federal functions, their cost, and the legal authorities mandating these functions.

We will establish a formal consultation process through which comments and concerns by tribal governments will be sought.

BIA has not yet established a formal process for consultation with tribes that can apply to all federal agencies dealing with tribal governments and that has been approved by the majority of tribes, the Department, Congress, and the White House. In the meantime the BIA has been holding consultations with tribes on every major policy by announcing meetings in the Federal Register and through tribal leader letters. These mechanisms are intended to give all tribes every opportunity to provide input into policy proposals. The Bureau often publishes the results of the consultation sessions in the Federal Register to let tribes know the changes their involvement caused.

Bureau of Land Management

Casual Uses of Lands, Facilities, and Developed Sites

Oversees use of campgrounds, visitor centers, developed trails, and other facilities.



If you need an authorization to use lands, facilities, or sites, we will complete action on your in-person request within 30 minutes.

According to 1995 data, 97 percent of respondents received their information within 30 minutes of their in-person request.

We will respond to telephone or written requests within five business days.

According to 1995 data, 77 percent of the respondents received a response to their telephone or written request within five business days.

Compliance and Enforcement

Enforces requirements, regulations, and laws governing leases, permits, grants, and other uses of lands and resources.

You will be informed of what to expect during the application process.

According to 1995 data, 70 percent of the customers who responded were satisfied with what they were told to expect during the application process.

You will be informed of the terms and conditions of your permit or authorization.

According to 1995 data, 74 percent of the customers who responded said they were informed of the terms and conditions for their permit or authorization.

You will receive fair and consistent treatment under laws and regulations.

According to 1995 data, 54 percent of the customers who responded were satisfied that the Bureau of Land Management was ensuring fair and consistent policies.

Information Access Centers

Provides information and products at central locations.

You will be greeted and your request will be acknowledged within five minutes of your arrival.

According to 1995 data, 91 percent of the customers received prompt, courteous service.

You will receive available information within 30 minutes of your in-person request.

According to 1995 data, 97 percent of the customers who responded received available information within 30 minutes of their in-person request.

We will respond to your telephone or written inquiries within five business days.

According to 1995 data, 77 percent of the customers who responded received a response to their telephone or written request within five business days.

You will receive the most current and accurate information about the public land that we have available.

According to 1995 data, 91 percent of the customers who responded said they received the most current and accurate information about the public land.

You will be able to receive information about lands and resources not managed by the Bureau of Land Management.

According to 1995 data, 80 percent of the customers who responded said they received information about lands and resources not managed by BLM.

You will have access to available information that meets the needs of customers with disabilities (information about accessible campsites, brochures in large print or Braille, etc.).

According to 1995 data, 84 percent of the customers who responded were satisfied with access to information meeting the needs of customers with disabilities.

Uses Requiring Authorization

Administers grazing permits, mineral leases, and rights of way that require prior written approval.



Your applications will be processed in a timely manner.

According to 1995 data, 72 percent of respondents were satisfied that the Bureau of Land Management processed their applications in a timely manner.

Good communication will be maintained during the permitting process.

According to 1995 data, 68 percent of respondents were satisfied that BLM maintained good communication during the permitting process.

You will be informed of what to expect during the application process.

According to 1995 data, 70 percent of respondents were satisfied with what they were told to expect during the application process.

Bureau of Reclamation

Power Program

Manages, develops, and protects water and related resources in an environmentally and economically sound manner.

We will always treat our customers with courtesy and respect.

Surveys of our power customers showed that customers rate our employees high in access, courtesy, dependability, knowledge, and responsiveness. Of the customers responding to the survey 84% rated our customer service as good to excellent. In addition, customers were invited to participate on the National Performance Review (NPR) Power Management Laboratory management team and workgroups as equal partners. The laboratory was a customer-driven initiative.

We will promptly answer our customers’ questions with accurate, objective information.

Of the Internet requests we receive, 90 percent are responded to immediately. All requests are fully researched and answered within a week. We have received many comments from the public thanking us for the courteous, timely, and appropriate answers to their questions.

We will resolve our customers’ needs through single-point contact whenever possible—our customers will not receive the runaround.

We receive many questions from customers, the general public, and school children. These questions are promptly researched and responses given, usually within two working days or less. If we cannot provide the response, we contact individuals within the Bureau who can and notify the customer of our actions. We then give the customer the name and number of the person to whom we forwarded their question.

We will provide educational information to our customers about the resources we manage, their use, and the laws and regulations governing their use.

As part of the Power Management Laboratory, we have provided briefings and presentations to a number of our power customers and business partners. Our survey showed that the customers who received information overwhelmingly believed that it is relevant, reliable, timely, and useful. Most educational information questions are requested from the Internet. These questions are answered promptly, usually within two working days or less.

We will use language that our customers can easily understand.

The electric hydropower industry is complex and unique, and the terminology used is not easily understood by the general public. Our NPR laboratory report and Benchmarking Data Book have been written to be easily understood. A glossary of terms is attached to all publications using industry terminology. We receive many questions from school children. These questions are always answered in a language that they can understand and that can be used for their papers. We have several brochures and documents that we use to provide information regarding hydropower that are specifically written for the public’s level of knowledge.



We will ask for and consider our customers’ ideas about agency plans, programs, and services.We will promptly respond to our customers’ suggestions, concerns, and complaints.

From the NPR laboratory survey, we have identified our customers’ concerns. We have developed a power program supplement to our Customer Service Plan. Our plan addresses the needs of customers, partners, constituents, and stakeholders. So far, we have involved customers in our laboratory in the management team and workgroups; solicited advice and ideas from customers through direct two-way communication; identified our customers’ principal concerns; developed a public outreach program; increased our participation in industry meetings; and used electronic media, including the Internet, to share information. Our major reinvention recommendations were based on input from both our constituents and our employees. We have received—and have promptly incorporated—several suggestions on items that could be included in our Web pages.

Mineral Management Service

Offshore Minerals

Administers Outer Continental Shelf leasing program.

Offshore Minerals Management Program-wide standards.

We treat our customers, partners, and Mineral Management Service staff with respect and maintain a professional attitude when dealing with them.

MMS involved affected constituents at the local level in the process for developing the Five-Year Oil and Gas Leasing Program for 1997-2002. We continued efforts to foster better communications and coordination between MMS and coastal counties in southern California and have been actively involved with outreach efforts in the Florida Panhandle. MMS launched a two-year program under which a number of offshore operators agreed to voluntarily implement a Safety and Environmental Management Program and provide data that will help to determine its effectiveness and costs.



We continually provide high-quality scientific and technical data, information, and publications.

MMS customers have access to a multitude of data from its home pages including, but not limited to, publications, scientific and technical information (e.g., Gulf of Mexico Atlas, Assessment of the Undiscovered Hydrocarbon Potential of the Nation’s Outer Continental Shelf (OCS), environmental studies data), press releases, program accomplishments, and organizational information. MMS is sharing its expertise and experience with numerous countries throughout the world (Russia, Romania, Poland, and Hungary). Lessons learned from the U.S. offshore oil and gas program have enabled other nations to develop programs that will attract private investments and/or ensure safe and environmentally sound operations.

We conduct offshore activities with a high degree of quality, integrity, and accuracy.

Several noteworthy initiatives include: the use of industry depth migration data as a tool to determine fair-market value; the use of Coastal Marine Institutes to cultivate new state-federal research partnerships on environmental and socioeconomic issues of mutual concern; sponsoring of the Pipeline Inspection Quality Improvement Team as a consensus-based decisionmaking process to provide user agencies with an analytical framework for assessing the present condition and inspection needs of offshore pipelines; and the initiation of a forum for public discussion of seismic activities on the OCS offshore Southern California.

Customer, partner, and MMS staff needs will be efficiently and effectively responded to in a timely fashion.

Accomplishments include: plain English and significantly shortened rule on unitization of leases; shorter (by 25 percent), more readable environmental impact statements; revised oil spill reporting for spills of less than one barrel. MMS has established many vehicles for customers, partners, and stakeholders to keep up continuous dialogs in the development and operation of the Offshore program; these have resulted in the development of a straightforward set of guidelines when applying for royalty relief of marginally producing wells; changes in implementation of the OCS Deep Water Royalty Relief Act; and a proposal to increase from 90 days to 180 days the time allowed between operations for an offshore natural gas and oil lease to continue beyond its primary term.

Alaska Regional Public Information Office (PIO)—Pilot Project:

The buck stops here when it comes to assisting people lost and wandering in the bureaucratic maze of government.

Of those surveyed, 68 percent agreed that PIO staff willingly took responsibility to assist customers and to provide the answers or to forward the customer to the office responsible for the information; 9 percent disagreed; and 23 percent had no comment.

Walk-in customers have priority and will be promptly acknowledged and assisted as soon as possible.

Of those surveyed, 75 percent stated that they were always promptly and courteously assisted when using the PIO; 4 percent disagreed; and 26 percent had no comment.

All information will be current and correct. Staff will find the answer or find a more knowledgeable person to assist. We will never guess.

Of those surveyed, 66 percent agreed that the information provided was accurate and current, and that questions out of the scope of the PIO were forwarded to specialists; 8 percent disagreed; and 22 percent had no comment.

Not all questions have answers. If the answer can’t be found, that fact will be reported to the customer.

Of those surveyed, 68 percent agreed that PIO staff willingly took responsibility to assist customers and to provide the answers or to forward the customer to the office responsible for the information; 9 percent disagreed; and 23 percent had no comment.

Customers are never sent to another office or agency cold. Staff will check to ensure the office is the correct one and also that the contact person is available.

Of those surveyed, 68 percent agreed that PIO staff willingly took responsibility to assist customers and to provide the answers or to forward the customer to the office responsible for the information; 9 percent disagreed; and 23 percent had no comment.



Before leaving, all customers will be asked, "Does this completely answer your question?"

No data, but considering how positive our survey results are, we feel that very few customers leave the Alaska Regional PIO without having either the correct answer(s) or the name and address of an individual or office that will be able to help them.

The Gulf of Mexico Public Information Office—Pilot Project:

When you enter our office, you will be promptly acknowledged.

Promptness of service was rated as "good" or "excellent" by 92 percent of customers.

We will be sensitive to your information needs.

Ninety-three percent of customers commented that the information needed was provided.

You can expect to be treated with courtesy at all times.

Staff was rated 97 percent in courtesy by customers.

We will make a sincere effort to provide you with information in a timely manner.

No rating.

We will strive to accurately respond to your request.

No rating.

Pacific Regional Public Information Office—Pilot Project:

We will consistently provide exceptional customer service; public information customer requests are our first priority. We define exceptional as courteous, prompt, respectful, and innovative.We monitor the toll-free 1- 800 number a minimum of every four business hours. We return telephone messages left at this number within 24 to 48 business hours.

We will strive to accurately provide you with the information you request, and to assist you in defining your research needs.

Since October 1996, the Technical Information Specialist has proved so successful in meeting customer needs and providing service that she has received, to date, approximately 20 personalized "thank yous," where the requestor has called back to comment on the excellence of the service received. Additionally, between December and January, the Technical Information Specialist received four written "thank yous."

We commit to respond to your requests within a maximum of 48 business hours.

We have received approximately 45 messages from the toll-free 1-800 number; of these messages, the return call and/or response rate has been within 24 to 48 business hours. A Web site ( has been established. A sharp focus on public information and customer service continues. Turnaround time, which includes either materials being mailed to requestor or a telephone call to the requestor reporting on the status of their request, has been within one week of request. Generally, response time to public information requests is 24 to 48 hours. On occasion, we provide public information requests through Federal Express, when cost effective and necessary, to meet the requestor’s deadline.

MMS Royalty Management Program

Office of Indian Royalty Assistance

Handles all mineral revenue functions for federal and Indian lands.



Separate standards for the Oklahoma City, Farmingtons,New Mexico, Pilot Project; and Northern Offices no longer exist. These have been combined into a single set of standards to ensure consistent service to all Indian customers.

We will greet you in a courteous manner, listen to you, and provide efficient and professional service every time you contact us.

The Office of Indian Royalty Assistance (OIRA) holds semiannual meetings for managers and analysts. A regular agenda item at these meetings is an Indian culture and awareness training program, led by a native American from the area. These sessions have enabled the staff to remain sensitive to the differing customs of our clientele. These types of sessions are also being offered to all Royalty Management Program employees to raise their awareness of Indian issues. Responses to surveys regarding OIRA customer service efforts have been extremely favorable. Of the 37 responses received for FY96, all indicated that we were doing an excellent job of satisfying our customers.

We will work with you to meet your needs while complying with existing laws, regulations, and policies.

In response to customer requests, we have structured outreach sessions to include training on the various aspects of oil and gas leasing, including how lands are selected for leasing, how the Department verifies proper reporting and payment, and how the payments are made to the individual Indian mineral owners.

We will promptly research, investigate, and answer your question or concern. If we are unable to give you an answer on the spot, we will: (1) keep you posted on our progress until your question or concern is resolved; (2) not send you to another office, unless absolutely necessary; and (3) assist you in contacting the proper party for resolution.

Of the 868 problems closed out in FY96, over one-third (311) were closed the same day; and over 60 percent (537, including the 311) were closed out within a month.

We will work continuously to streamline and improve our services. We appreciate your comments and suggestions. Feel free to use our comment cards or see the office manager.

During FY96, all OIRA analysts attended train-the-trainer sessions held in Tulsa, Farmington, and Billings. These sessions were designed to improve presentation skills and delivery of information to Indian minerals’ owners.

We will make an extra effort to be available to you. If you cannot come to our office, you may call our toll-free telephone numbers, or we will meet with you at a more convenient location at your request.

OIRA schedules outreach sessions at various locations throughout Indian country. These meetings, publicized in advance, have occurred at tribal offices, Bureau of Indian Affairs offices, and local chapter houses or meeting rooms. OIRA held a total of 75 such meetings with allottees in FY96, and had an additional 25 meetings with tribes.

National Park Service

National Standards

Conserves unimpaired the resources and values of the National Park System (NPS) for public enjoyment, and extends through its programs the benefits of conservation and outdoor recreation throughout this country and the world.

To the best of our ability:

We will be courteous, helpful, and responsive to visitors.

In the Serving the Visitor 1996 report, 86 percent of visitors rated the overall quality of park personnel as good to very good.

We will make available quality NPS maps and brochures.

In the Serving the Visitor 1996 report, 83 percent of visitors rated the overall quality of park brochures as good to very good.



We will provide quality audiovisual programs and exhibits.

In the Serving the Visitor 1996 report, 81 percent of visitors rated the overall quality of exhibits as good to very good.

We will provide quality services in NPS visitor centers.

In the Serving the Visitor 1996 report, 82 percent of visitors rated the overall quality of visitor centers as good to very good.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Management of National Wildlife Refuge System

Manages over 500 National Wildlife Refuges across America.

We are committed to the following standards of service:

Treating you with courtesy.

Of refuge visitors surveyed in the 1995-96 pilot project, 98 percent described employees as courteous. During 1997, similar surveys evaluating customer service will be conducted at additional sites throughout the National Wildlife Refuge System. This standard was recently adopted Service-wide.

Responding to you in a timely and professional manner.

Of refuge visitors surveyed in the 1995-96 pilot project, 94 percent said they had received prompt service. The use of surveys measuring customer service will be expanded throughout the National Wildlife Refuge System in calendar year 1997. This standard also was recently adopted Service-wide.

Maintaining a professional appearance and positive attitude.

This revised standard was recently adopted Service-wide. Various methods of measuring this standard in different organizational settings are currently under consideration; thus, no data are yet available.

Helping you understand who we are and what we do.

This new standard was recently adopted Service-wide. Scheduled for completion in 1997 is the National Outreach Strategy: A Master Plan for Communicating in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Various assessment methods are currently being considered for use throughout the Service; thus, no data are yet available.

Keeping public facilities safe, clean, and accessible.

Of visitors surveyed in the 1995-96 pilot project, 87 percent were satisfied with the cleanliness of restrooms; 97 percent were equally satisfied with the cleanliness of other facilities; 83 percent rated both safety signs and directional signs as "good" or "very good." This standard also was recently adopted Service-wide.

Working in partnership with you to conserve fish and wildlife resources.

This new standard was just recently adopted Service-wide, and applicable measurement techniques for different organizational settings are still under consideration. Nonetheless, qualitative as well as quantitative data from ongoing programs (e.g., landowners entering into habitat conservation programs associated with the Safe Harbor Policy, and participants in the Partners for Wildlife program) reflect a high degree of customer satisfaction.

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