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Census 2000 operations and the Census-GSA Joint Venture 2000:

GSA #9630

January 6, 2000
Contact: Viki Reath
(202) 501-1231

The following statement by David J. Barram, Administrator of the US General Services Administration, was released today at a news briefing covering Census 2000 operations and the Census-GSA Joint Venture 2000:


The Census/GSA partnership is a story of how we're providing supplies, telecommunications and space equal to the size of TWO Empire State Buildings to support nearly 800,000 people who will be working on Census 2000.

It is a story of how government partnerships can do great work and work well on behalf of the American taxpayers. GSA knows logistics and how to get space, supplies and phones - fully operational, turnkey workplaces. And the better we do that, the better Census can do its job. This is what we should strive to do always.

Since coming to GSA almost four years ago, I have been stressing two things:

1. Thrilling our customers with great customer service; and
2. Integrating our services for our customers, so that we present a unified and effective GSA - one face to the customer.

I am happy to see that we have done that here.

For the last two years, nearly 1,200 GSA and Census employees have worked on this partnership. Supporting their work are 1,000 commercial vendors - small and large businesses - giving us the largest public-private partnership arrangement, that I know of, that two government agencies have undertaken in peacetime.

GSA initiated this partnership and has felt a great responsibility to make it work well.

And it has.

We have completed the delivery of 1,027 offices - including 520 Local Census Offices like the one we're in today - since the Partnership Agreement was signed in February 1998. That's 4.5 million square feet of office space. That's more space than TWO Empire State Buildings.

But � the real story there is how we supplied office space - ranging from 500 square feet to 8,000 square feet - throughout the country in 1,027 different locations - each negotiated separately.

In some cases, we've put the offices in vacant space in federal buildings or in Post Offices. In California and Arizona, we're using pre-fab, modular buildings and even put an office on Navajo property.

In addition to meeting the space requirements, we also filled Census' needs for furniture, equipment, and voice and data systems - again, fully functioning operational turnkey facilities.

That's:

900 miles of telephone wire - enough to stretch from Washington, DC to Florida.
26,000 phone jacks installed
17,000 telephones
37,000 telephone service orders

GSA also supplied:

113,365 pieces of furniture
663 copiers
1,311 fax machines
700 million pounds of printed materials
520 typewriters, shredders and hand trucks

And I'm proud to say that we were able to get these supplies quickly, while fulfilling our social responsibilities with the National Industries for the Blind and Severely Handicapped. Orders through these vendors totaled nearly $20 million.

Throughout the year, we will continue to serve Census 2000.
But our work doesn't stop there. At the end of Census 2000, we must quickly shut down the facilities and dispose of all of the equipment, furniture, supplies and space.
The GSA partnership with Census has demonstrated that by working together and leveraging our strengths, we can focus on our respective missions. In this case, we've concentrated on what we do best so they can use their resources and time to focus on the count and analysis.
And that's the way it's supposed to work. That's a good government story, which means no one may notice, but that's okay, too - as long as the job gets done.
It also means that working closely with our customers, GSA can:
DELIVER ON OUR COMMITMENTS.
INTEGRATE THE DELIVERY OF SERVICES and PROVIDE ONE FACE TO THE CUSTOMER, and
THRILL OUR CUSTOMERS.

The folks at Census are pleased with our ability to keep our commitment to provide the turnkey facilities required in 50 states and Puerto Rico.
.
I can't possibly mention everyone who has made the Joint Venture such a success up to this stage, but I would like to identify the folks who have provided much of its leadership.
I would like to recognize and thank the members of the Census core team:
Grailand Hall, Census National Project Manager for Phase 2;
Mark Taylor, Census National Project Manager for Phase 1;
Hugh Brennan, Incoming National Project Manager;
Nancy Jones;
Chris Volatile;
Bill Phelan;
Dwight Osborne; and Jack Marshall.

Recognition and thanks also go to the GSA core team consisting of:

Team leader Ken Kalscheur of our Great Lakes Region in Chicago. Ken is tenacious in getting things done, and he brings a whole new meaning to
the so-called Chicago-style of doing things.
Also, thanks goes to Ron Dovel from GSA's Public Buildings Service;
Jim Jones from our Federal Technology Service;
Nick Summers and Shelley Edwards of GSA's Federal Supply Service, and
Richard Hillyard from our Great Lakes Region in Chicago, who developed and oversees the tracking and reporting process for the Joint Venture.
Thank you all and our 12 project managers in the regions and field for your efforts.
I'd like to give a special thanks to Paul Chistolini, Deputy Commissioner of GSA's Public Buildings Service. Paul was the one who identified the issues and opportunities early on here and really got the ball rolling. It's that kind of thinking that helps us do great things at GSA.
When we began this Joint Venture, one of our objectives was "to demonstrate Great Government Work." As we have worked diligently with our Census partners, and with hundreds of contractors, we have shown that we can do this. We have much yet to do, but I am confident that we will be able to build on our successes by using this partnership as a model for working with all our customers.
Good luck to Census 2000. GSA is here for you.