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2008-02-21 / From The Mayor...

From The Mayor's Desk ...

CPR: Improving Government Services Through Technology

I've always believed in the power of technology to deliver essential in-formation that you need when you need it. As a businessman, I introduced a system that opened access to financial data and put individual in-vestors in the driver's seat. As mayor, I've continued that same approach by empowering the primary investors in City government - the more than 8.2 million New Yorkers whose tax dollars keep our city running - to keep tabs on their investments.

Last week, we launched a new tool that will help New Yorkers do that. It's called Citywide Performance Report-ing, or "CPR." It provides anyone - a deputy mayor, a reporter, and most especially, an everyday New Yorker - with a new wealth of information on City government. CPR is essentially a collection of performance measures and statistics updated every month that show you how well City government is serving the public. For example, CPR can tell you how long it takes us on average to fix potholes, it can tell you if the Sanitation Depart-ment is doing a good job of keeping the streets clean in your neighborhood, or whether Fire Department response times in your borough are increasing or decreasing.

You can see that information, and more than 500 other key indicators, by visiting the City's web site at nyc.-gov. And you don't have to be an expert on City government to find the information you're looking for. That's because CPR is organized in a user-friendly manner according to themes - such as public safety and education - that give you a quick, clear picture of how well City government is doing in the areas that matter most to you.

CPR uses color-coded pie charts that show performance trends at a glance. For some agencies you can track performance going back as far as five years, and also compare performance in each borough or community district.

In the 1990s, a zero-tolerance policy for quality-of-life crimes - often referred to as the broken-window theory - ushered in a new era of public safety for New York City. As we continue to build on those gains, we're also starting to open the windows of government to bring a new era of trans-parency and accountability to our city. That work began with three simple numbers: 311, our citizen service hotline giving New Yorkers direct access to government 24 hours a day, seven days a week. And it has continued with innovations such as School Progress Reports, which are giving parents new insight into how their child's school is performing.

CPR is the next big step in bringing the operations of City government more fully into the open. Our hope is that CPR will continue to empower the people to hold government account-able long after our Administration has left office. I encourage all New York-ers to check in from time to time to make sure we're spending your tax dollars wisely. After all, these are your investments, and you have every right to see how they're performing. So why not try CPR for yourself by visiting nyc.gov?

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