Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Mayor Hitting the Green Stuff

There was chuckling on the Georgetown mailing list today about a fresh press release from the mayor's office: "Nickels and Conlin Propose Green Fee on Shopping Bags, Ban on Foam."

Many of us were pushing for this action last year when fighting the proposed Georgetown dump. But rumor had it the mayor was not ready to take this stance.

What a difference a year makes! Especially when that year is an election one.

Nickels has been hitting the green stuff extra hard lately, having his office produce 18 environmentalist press releases so far in 2008, versus just 5 during the same period last year.

But personally, my very favorite ridiculous item from the mayor's office this year came via Neighborhoods guy Steve Louie in a recent e-mail to the G-town list:

Hello all, we've been asked by the Mayor's Office to assist with the outreach in getting your responses, which will then be used in developing a Customer Bill of Rights. Please log on to the site below for more information and take a few moments to respond to a few questions. Thanks...and I'm apologizing now if you get this more than once...

Steve Louie
Department of Neighborhoods

I actually went and took a look, hoping for a chance to enter some specific requests (like, can we get assigned a tracking number when we submit graffiti complaints to SPU, so we can later find out what the status is, as you can with DPD complaints).

Instead, the only three questions are totally bullshit:

* What does good customer service mean to you?

* What do you think should be part of a customer bill of rights?

* Do you have a customer service experience with the city of Seattle that you would like to share?

I couldn't care less about this "Bill of Rights." The City already knows what it is that they need to fix. They outlined it in this Customer Service Initiative Overview from last fall. Better accessibility, efficiency, and accountability. There--they've got it right there.

I just wish Nickels would start working on fixing the actual problems now, rather than collecting more data on "what good customer service means to us." But then I guess he'd have nothing to promise us for his next term...

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