Senate Passes Bipartisan Hassan-Lankford Bill to Improve Federal Government’s Customer Service

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Senate passed the Federal Agency Customer Experience (FACE) Act of 2019, a bipartisan bill, introduced by Senators Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and James Lankford (R-OK), to better assess and improve the customer service experience for Americans dealing with federal agencies.

“If there’s one thing that we can all agree on, it’s that dealing with customer service can be maddeningly difficult – so I’m very glad to be working across the aisle to improve the federal government’s customer service,” said Senator Hassan. “Hearing directly from people about their experience with federal agencies will help the federal government to identify problems, address them, and better serve the public. I hope the House quickly follows our lead by passing the bill so it can be signed into law.”

“Attention to customer service is an important part of improving the federal government’s interaction with the public it serves,” said Senator Lankford. “The commonsense, bipartisanbicameral FACE Act gives federal agencies the flexibility to conduct brief and voluntary surveys of the public they serve—something that should be easy but unfortunately red tape even complicates customer service. I am grateful for Senator Hassan’s work to help move this legislation. I am glad the bill passed the Senate unanimously, and I look forward to its further consideration in the House.”

The bipartisan FACE Act would allow agencies to efficiently and effectively assess customer satisfaction with government services through brief surveys developed in coordination with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the General Services Administration (GSA). The surveys include standard questions developed by OMB and GSA which should address (1) overall satisfaction; (2) whether an individual accomplished his/her intended purpose; (3) whether an individual was treated with respect and professionalism; and (4) timeliness of service. The bill also increases transparency within the federal government by requiring participating agencies to publish their customer feedback online and with OMB.

Earlier this year, Congressmen Gerald E. Connolly (VA-11) and Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-1) introduced a companion bipartisan bill in the House of Representatives.

As a member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, and as Ranking Member of its subcommittee on Federal Spending Oversight and Emergency Management, Senator Hassan is focused on strengthening government efficiency and eliminating waste, fraud, and abuse. Last week, the committee voted to approve Hassan-backed measures to strengthen government accountability and save taxpayer dollars. Earlier this year, Senator Hassan joined in introducing the bipartisan Stopping Improper Payments to Deceased People Act to end erroneous payments the federal government makes to deceased individuals, as well as the Grant Reporting Efficiency and Agreements Transparency Act to modernize the reporting system for recipients of federal grants, helping to strengthen fiscal responsibility by better tracking the use of taxpayer dollars.

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