State re-signs AT&T to bolster passport service

The State Department has now stretched the hours of service, but not the wallets of users, at the National Passport Information Center.

State extended a five-year, $15.7 million contract with AT&T Corp.'s government solutions group to run the Dover, N.H., one-stop call center for passport queries. The General Services Administration awarded the contract on behalf of the Bureau of Consular Affairs' Passport Services Directorate.

E-mail service is new under the contract. The information center has promised that starting tomorrow, it will respond within 24 hours on business days to messages sent to npic@state.gov.

The center's former 900 number, which charged 55 cents to $1.50 per minute for assistance, will automatically redirect callers to the new toll-free number.

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