Document Name: Chapter 9: Travelers, Tourists, and Outdoor Enthusiasts
Date: 12/04/95
Owner: National Performance Review

Chapter 9

Customer Service Standards for

Travelers, Tourists, and Outdoor Enthusiasts

Agriculture (Department)

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

Animal Damage Control

Helps solve conflicts between human activities and wild animals.

We strive for the highest possible standards in providing you service. When requesting assistance, you can expect the following:

* You will be provided with accurate information or expert help to resolve or minimize your wildlife conflict.

* Our employees will show respect for people, property, and wildlife.

* Our employees will respect varying viewpoints on wildlife damage management.

* We will use the most humane, selective, and effective control techniques.

* We will conduct activities in a professional, biologically sound, and accountable way.

* Our work will be done in a safe manner and in accordance with all federal, state, and local laws and regulations.

International Services

Facilitates international trade in animal and plant products and helps to ensure an abundant food supply through helping to prevent agricultural pests and diseases from entering the United States.

We promise you, our customers:

* Professional and courteous treatment: Our employees are knowledgeable and responsive. Your concerns are important to us, and you will be treated in a professional, courteous, and efficient manner.

* Clarity in explaining our position: We will answer your questions in a clear and concise manner. We will explain how decisions were made and convey this information in understandable language.

* Program responses: Our program designs use the latest scientific methodologies. We promise to deliver our services with minimal disruption to the normal daily operations of our customers.

* Transparency and consistency in our regulatory processes: We promise to be consistent and transparent in the enforcement of our regulations.

Plant Protection and Quarantine

Protects the health of U.S. plant and animal resources and facilitates their movement in the global marketplace.

We will serve international travelers and carriers by:

* Providing professional and courteous treatment.

* Providing expeditious inspection to the majority of all international travelers within five minutes of luggage claim.

* Answering travelers' questions or concerns before they leave the inspection area.

* Working with other federal inspection agencies, the transportation industry, and facility owners to provide the best in customer service.

We will serve cargo customers and carriers by:

* Providing professional and courteous treatment.

* Providing accurate and complete responses to requests for information within three days.

* Scheduling inspections of perishable cargo within three hours of availability and inspections of other regulated cargo within 24 hours of availability.

* Notifying customers of cargo holds and releases within one hour of inspection.

* Identifying intercepted organisms within four hours at ports where an identifier is stationed and 24 hours at all other ports.

* Communicating "no action required" or "action required" with options and/or our decision rendered within one hour of interception or identification of an organism.

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.

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

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

* Visitors will always be welcomed with prompt, courteous service.

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

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

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

Defense (Department)

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

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.

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

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

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

Executive Office of the President

Public Tour Program

Conducts public tours.

We will base our success on how well we meet these standards:

Public tour program:

* That we provide an enjoyable and educational tour.

* That we have knowledgeable and interesting tour guides.

* That we give you clear directions as to the time and location of Old Executive Office building tours.

White House visitors:

* That visitors have an enjoyable tour experience.

* That visitors receive accurate and helpful assistance.

* That visitors are given clear directions for obtaining tickets and reaching the tour entrance.

* That tour schedulers are informed of all aspects of the scheduling process and assisted in implementing them.

Interior (Department)

Bureau of Land Management

Casual Uses of Lands, Facilities, and Developed Sites

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

* You will be provided with well-designed and well-maintained facilities.

* You will receive complete and up-to-date information on the requested site.

* If you need an authorization to use lands, facilities, or sites, we will complete action on your in-person request within 30 minutes. We will respond to telephone or written requests within five business days.

Information Access Centers

Provides information and products at central locations.

* You will be greeted and your request will be acknowledged within 5 minutes of your arrival.

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

* You will receive available information within 30 minutes of your in-person request. We will respond to your telephone or written inquiries within 5 business days.

Public Policy Involvement Opportunities

Provides opportunities for you to be involved in our planning process and our management of resources.

* You will be provided with the opportunity to tell us how you think publicly owned resources should be managed.

* As we develop plans, rules, and regulations for use of public resources, you will be asked for your ideas.

* You will be afforded adequate time to make your comments and suggestions.

Recreational and Educational Users

Manages all aspects of 270 million acres of federal land and 570 million acres of federal mineral resources.

You can expect from us service that is professional, efficient, courteous, and that actively seeks and responds to your views.

We will always:

* Treat you courteously every time you contact us.

* Work with you to meet your needs while complying with laws and regulations.

* If any request cannot be filled in your initial contact with us, advise you who will respond to your request and when that will be done, and what the process is for addressing the request.

* You will be provided with well-designed and well-maintained facilities.

* You will receive complete and up-to-date information on the requested site.

* If you need an authorization for your use of lands, facilities, or sites, action on your in-person request will be completed within 30 minutes. We will respond to telephone or mail requests within 5 business days.

Bureau of Reclamation

Recreation Areas

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.

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

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

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

* We will use language that our customers can easily understand.

* 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.

Fish and Wildlife Service

Management of Conservation Refuges

Manages 500 conservation refuges across America.

* You will be treated with courtesy.

* Your calls will be answered promptly. An answering machine will be available during non-business hours.

* We will provide you with all the information you need to visit the facility: hours of operation, facility rules, telephone numbers, including an emergency number for problems, and brochures.

* Our employees will always look professional. Our employees are easily identified by uniforms and name tags.

* We will provide you with high-quality wildlife-dependent recreational and educational opportunities to enjoy this refuge's resources.

* We will clearly mark all trails and tour routes.

* We will clearly mark all hazardous areas and materials.

* Our facilities will be clean at all times.

* We welcome your comments and suggestions at any time. Contact a uniformed employee.

National Park Service

Promotes and regulates the use of national parks, monuments, and reservations.

We pledge to:

* Protect your right to experience superlative wilderness and scenic grandeur.

* Communicate an understanding of the people, places, and events that shaped these United States.

* Provide opportunities for quality outdoor recreation while conserving exceptional natural, cultural, and historical resources.

* Make the beauty and history of our nation's parklands a more meaningful part of the life of all Americans.

* Manage the National Park System so that everyone, now and in the future, may be assured the right of enjoying the parks.

* Seek out and protect the finest of what remains unprotected of the nation's natural, cultural, historical, and recreational resources.

* Join in partnerships throughout this and other nations in conserving and maintaining a quality world environment.

* Over 200 individual park units have developed site-specific visitor standards.

Visitor Centers

Provides information on National Parks.

* We will keep the Center open during peak hours and seasons and provide alternative sources of information when the Center is closed.

* We will maintain the facility in a clean, safe condition.

* We will answer your questions or refer you to additional sources of assistance.

* We will make special efforts to inform you of hazards and situations that may adversely affect your visit.

* We will provide and maintain exhibits and audiovisual programs that impart understanding and stimulate appreciation of the park and its significant natural, historical, cultural, and recreational values.

* We will display schedules of programs and activities available throughout the park.

* We will offer a wide range of quality, park-related educational items at fair market value sold in well-maintained outlets.

* Over 200 individual park units have developed site-specific visitor standards.

Justice (Department)

Immigration and Naturalization Service

Administers the Immigration and Nationality Laws.

INS employees will provide high-quality services to our diverse customers. To ensure this:

* By the second quarter of FY 1996, district offices will establish and implement an ongoing staff development program that emphasizes:

-- cross-cultural awareness.

-- consistent application of policy and procedure.

-- multifunctional training.

-- the use of available technology to improve service.

* INS will widely distribute informational materials and common forms through community service providers, public agencies, and telephone systems in an effort to minimize the need for customers to visit district offices.

* If you request information through the "Ask Immigration" telephone number, (202) 514-4316, we will provide improved service by reducing the message format from 58 items to 10 and the length of the menu from nine minutes to one. The message system is available 24 hours a day, with staff available to assist with follow-up questions during normal business hours.

* INS applications processing will be fair, accurate, and consistent throughout the Service. This will be accomplished by reengineering the naturalization and adjustment processes to:

-- provide adjustment and naturalization applicants with filing receipts within 30 calendar days.

-- enhance computer system capabilities so that status inquiries can be completed within 30 calendar days.

-- complete action on adjustment applications within four months.

-- complete action on naturalization applications within six months.

-- reengineer the processes for all other applications and petitions to include establishment of timeframes for completion of actions.

* INS will accelerate customers' access to benefit services with the primary objective being to:

-- greet customers promptly upon arrival in our offices.

-- direct customers to appropriate personnel.

-- deliver services in community settings to the fullest extent possible.

* INS will establish a formal customer feedback and complaint resolution process by the end of the second quarter of FY 1996. Information about this process will be posted prominently in public areas, translated into languages spoken by significant numbers of customers, and include the name and address of a designated official. All written complaints will be acknowledged within 30 days and resolved promptly.

Joint Inspections (INS/U.S. Customs Service)

INS will uphold the following customer service standards at land border ports-of-entry:

* Treat you, our customer, with professionalism and respect.

* Work with you, facility managers, and other federal agencies to provide excellent customer service while enforcing the laws of the United States.

* Provide a supervisor (by phone in remote locations) to address your inspection-related concerns before you leave the area.

* Make every effort to minimize your wait for an inspection.

* Respond to your written inquiries as expeditiously as possible. Upon receipt of your written inquiry with a phone number, INS will contact you within five working days. INS will mail you a written response within 10 days, if desired.

* Improve our inspections process while providing you with the highest level of customer service.

Entry into the United States

* If you are a United States citizen entering the country at an airport, you will find citizen inspection lines dedicated specifically for rapid clearance back into the country.

* If you are a frequent business traveler being inspected in an airport using the INSPASS program, and being inspected at the Newark, New Jersey; New York City; or Toronto, Canada, airports using the INSPASS System, you will be processed in less than a minute. This service is available 24 hours a day. INS is exploring the possibility of expanding this service to other airports.

* If you use the recently instituted Dedicated Commuter Lanes in Blaine, Washington, you will experience virtually no delay in entering the country. We are working with local authorities to establish similar lanes in other land border locations.

National Aeronautics and Space Administration

NASA Exhibit Program

Informs the general public about the objectives, methods, and results of the U.S. aerospace program through traveling exhibits and NASA Visitor Centers.

We will:

* Display themes in a concise, informative, and accessible way to a largely nontechnical audience.

* Provide safe and adequate passage for persons who use walking aids, or have visual impairments, as well as people who use wheelchairs.

* Plan all aspects of an exhibition in terms of the physical and intellectual needs of visitors.

* Caption audio-visual presentations.

* Consider eye level of persons standing and seated (as in a wheelchair) in the placement of text and visuals.

* Use a simple and clear grid format to minimize clutter and assist persons in accessing information.

* Make sure the operation of interactive devices does not require tight grasping, pinching, twisting of the wrist, or unreasonable strength.

* Make a sign language interpreter available for guided tours of NASA Visitor Centers to assist the hearing-impaired who have made specific tour arrangements in advance.

* Incorporate bilingual text into exhibits.

National Archives and Records Administration

Ensures, for the citizen and the public servant, for the President and Congress and the courts, ready access to essential evidence.

* We will treat all of our customers with courtesy.

* We will meet or beat our established deadlines for providing customer service.

* We will provide high-quality service by knowledgeable staff.

* We will provide informational products to meet our customers' needs.

If you need information about the National Archives:

* You can obtain timely and up-to-date information about NARA, its services, and holdings through the Internet and other on-line services, our fax-on-demand service, through printed publications, or by contacting one of our offices.

If you visit our exhibition hall in Washington, D.C.:

* You will find us open to serve you with knowledgeable staff or volunteers 364 days (closed only on December 25), with information readily available about our programs and services. During the peak visitor season, we will extend our hours for your convenience.

If you visit one of our presidential library museums:

* You will find us open to serve you with knowledgeable staff or volunteers 362 days (closed only on Thanksgiving Day, December 25, and January 1), with information readily available about our programs and services.

If things go wrong:

* If our service has not matched our values and standards for customer service, we want to know so that we can do something about it and get it right the next time. Our local complaints and suggestions procedures are as follows. You may:

-- Discuss the problem with the person who served you.

-- Use our suggestion/complaint comment form (NA Form 14045). You can mail it or drop it in the box provided. Or you can simply write us a letter. If you request a reply, we will provide a response within seven working days.

-- Speak or write to the supervisor in charge. If we cannot solve your problem immediately, we will provide a response within seven working days.

-- If you are still not satisfied that we have handled your complaint or provided the service we promised, you can write to the Assistant Archivist for the office with which you have been dealing.

State (Department)

Bureau of Consular Affairs

Handles passports and visas.

* You will receive your passport within 25 working days after your application is received. Service will be provided in a courteous manner and, whenever possible, we will try to meet your individual travel needs.

* You will receive timely and accurate information on travel safety and conditions in foreign countries 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

* You will receive a timely and courteous response to your request for American citizen services and service will be provided by knowledgeable, professional, and courteous personnel.

* Services to persons seeking visas to legally visit or reside in the United States will be provided by professional, knowledgeable, and courteous personnel.

Transportation (Department)

Federal Aviation Administration

Civil Aviation Security

Seeks to protect the traveling public in air transportation throughout the world.

FAA will:

* Always seek input from and coordinate with all stakeholders before amending the Federal Aviation Regulations and security programs.

* Have Federal Security Managers at 19 major airports in the United States to coordinate security measures, policies, and programs.

* Have agents at airports across the country to conduct continuous inspections and investigations of security measures, to share results immediately upon completion, and to ensure corrective action.

* Provide Federal Air Marshals for in-flight security on selected flights for U.S. airlines.

* Conduct hazardous materials surveillance and inspection of all air carriers serving the United States to ensure safe handling.

* Provide training and support for K-9 explosive detection teams at major airports.

* Collaborate with FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration, and U.S. Customs to develop strategies and state-of-the-art techniques for drug interdiction.

Federal Highway Administration

Federal Aid Program

Ensures the highest quality surface transportation system for the nation.

For our partners:

* We will inform you of all major changes in polices and regulations in a clear and timely manner. Except in unusual circumstances, you will have at least 60 days in which to offer your views on all proposed changes, and your views will be appropriately considered. The regulations will be clear and realistic and impose only the minimum necessary requirements.

* All of our partners and customers with whom we have a financial relationship will receive timely and accurate payment of all funds due to you. For those state partners who use electronic signature, we will make reimbursement payment to you on the same day that you request it.

* We will provide you, either directly or through other sources, with the best available training, technical assistance, and access to state-of-the-art transportation technology that will meet your needs.

* We will provide an open and cooperative approach to considering and deciding on changes that may affect practices, materials, or other aspects of transportation improvement activities.

* We will show integrity in our business processes, openness to innovation, and objectivity in our evaluations.

For the motoring and general public:

* All persons and businesses affected by federally aided transportation improvements will have an opportunity to present their views during the decisionmaking process, and they will receive all services and benefits to which they are entitled under the law.

* All federally aided transportation improvements will be undertaken with the aim of minimizing delay and maximizing safety in and around construction activities.

* We will work with our partners to address identified safety problems in a timely and prioritized manner.

* We will work closely with our partners to enhance the condition and performance of our nation's major roads and bridges.

* We will work with our partners to ensure quality and appropriate uniformity in signs, signals, and design standards on the nation's major highways.

* All federally aided transportation improvements will take full account of impacts on the human and social environment and on historical sites. We promise to minimize those impacts to the fullest reasonable extent, and to enhance the environment whenever possible.

* All of our partners and customers will be provided with timely and accurate information whenever you request it. You will receive the requested information, or a specific commitment for future delivery, within 10 days of our receipt of your request.

U.S. Coast Guard

Office of Marine Safety, Security, and Environmental Protection: Recreational Boating

Provides information for recreational boater.

We will provide the following services for recreational boaters:

* 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week search and rescue services on demand.

* 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week radionavigation services.

* Toll-free, 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week Boating Safety Hotline, 1-800-368-5647, for immediate access to a Coast Guard customer service representative with accurate on-the-spot answers to technical questions and written information follow-up to:

-- obtain free boating information,

-- obtain boating accident statistics,

-- obtain boat safety defect warnings,

-- report a possible boat safety defect, and

-- learn about a recall campaign.

* Boating safety classes and courtesy inspections by trained Coast Guard Auxiliarists at locations across the United States.

* 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week navigation information services at (703) 313-5900.

* 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week operation of Channel 16, the VHF-FM national distress system.

Treasury (Department)

Bureau of Engraving and Printing

Public Tours

Offers public tours of the Washington, D.C., plant that prints U.S. currency.

You can expect:

* Knowledgeable and courteous personnel.

* Additional personnel stationed throughout the tour to assist you and answer your questions.

* A comment card to be provided for your questions and suggestions for improving the tour.

* At least one tour guide will be assigned to each group.

* That your group will be distinct and separate and be given personalized attention.

* Your group will have no more than 80 people.

* Your tour guide will be fluent in the language you requested.

* To receive various informational brochures from the gallery and the Visitors Center.

* The "Visitors Guide" to be available at the ticket booth, visitor's entrance, and the Visitors Center.

* Knowledgeable and courteous service in the Visitors Center sales area.

* Quality products from the Visitors Center.

U.S. Customs Service

Field Operations: International Air Travelers

Facilitates entry of international air travelers into the United States.

We'll serve international air travelers by:

* Providing professional and courteous treatment to everyone.

* Providing expeditious clearance to the majority of international travelers within five minutes of luggage claim.

* Providing a supervisor to address your Customs-related questions or concerns before you leave the area.

* Working with you, other federal inspection agencies, airlines, and facility owners in providing the best customer service.

* Upon receipt of your written inquiry, complete with a telephone number, we will contact you personally within three working days.

Land Border Crossings

Enforces compliance of federal laws at land border ports-of-entry.

We are committed to upholding the following customer service standards at land border ports-of-entry:

* Treating you, our customer, with professionalism and respect.

* Working with you, facility managers, and other federal agencies to provide excellent customer service while enforcing the laws of the United States.

* Providing a supervisor (by phone in remote locations) to address your inspection-related concerns before you leave the area.

* Making every effort to minimize your wait for inspection.

* Responding to your written inquiries as expeditiously as possible. Upon receipt of your written inquiry with a phone number, we will contact you within five working days. We will mail you a written response within 10 days, if desired.

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