GSA reorganizes, disperses FirstGov office

GSA reorganizes, disperses FirstGov office

The Office of FirstGov grew up, became successful and is no more. The General Services Administration on June 30 reorganized FirstGov, the Information Technology Office and the Intergovernmental Solutions Office into the new Office of Citizen Services and Communications.

The agency also shifted its Communications Office and the Federal Consumer Information Center into the new office to consolidate services to citizens, GSA administrator Stephen Perry said.

'This is part of the president's effort to be more citizen-centered,' he said. 'There were a lot of duplicated efforts among these offices, and we wanted to simplify how citizens interact with us.'

GSA officials said they have been discussing the reorganization since last December and included the new Citizen Services office in their fiscal 2003 budget request.

M.J. Jameson, whom GSA hired in December, is associate administrator of the new office. She said the heads of the other offices have moved to the new divisions within Citizen Services.

Deborah Diaz, former FirstGov director, moved to the E-government Solutions Support office, which develops requirements and new capabilities for Citizen Services, including enhancements to the firstgov.gov portal. Diaz's office also works on USA Services, one of the Office of Management and Budget's 24 e-government initiatives, and other cross-agency projects.

'We never intended FirstGov to be a permanent office,' Perry said. 'Once the search engine was solidified, we wanted to find it a permanent home so it could expand with transactional services and facilitate communications.'

Jameson said FirstGov became bigger than just an office. She called it a very successful product that has expanded to the point where it needs many different people helping it to continue to develop.

The reorganization did not cause any layoffs, Perry said. It will be funded by pulling money from the Communications Office, from FirstGov and from the consumer center.

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