SHAHEEN, HODES, SHEA-PORTER URGE SECRETARY CLINTON TO KEEP DOVER NATIONAL PASSPORT INFORMATION CENTER OPEN
(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen, U.S. Congressman Paul Hodes, and U.S. Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter today urged U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to prevent a premature closure of the National Passport Information Center (NPIC) in Dover, which employs over 300 workers. The NPIC has provided services to the State Department since 1996, but a new contract with Peckham Industries threatens to terminate the existing contract and move the facility from Dover on February 27, 2009. The Communications Workers of America (CWA) filed a complaint with the State Department on behalf of the NPIC employees, and the letter to Secretary Clinton asks that she not close the facility until it is shown that the new contract was awarded in good faith.
“The Dover NPIC facility has provided a strong and reliable service of highly qualified and trained employees that have served the State Department since September 1996,” wrote the group. “We urge you to keep the Dover facility open until the investigation into the CWA allegations is complete.”
The full text of the letter to Secretary Clinton follows:
The Honorable Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary, Department of State
U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street, NW
Washington, DC 20520
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Dear Secretary Clinton,
The State Department contract with AT&T Government Solutions for the National Passport Information Center (NPIC) in Dover, New Hampshire is expected to terminate on February 27, 2009, laying off 300 hard-working New Hampshire employees. We urge you to reconsider the pending termination of the contract and delay the closure of the Dover facility until pending allegations of misconduct have been investigated.
On February 13, 2009, the Communications Workers of America (CWA) filed a complaint on behalf of the employees of the NPIC in Dover to the Office of the Inspector General at the Department of State. The complaint, enclosed, requested an investigation into the contract awarded to Peckham Industries. The Peckham Industries contract will terminate the contract with AT&T Government Solutions and move the NPIC services from Dover, New Hampshire despite the quality infrastructure already in place in Dover.
The Dover NPIC facility has provided a strong and reliable service of highly qualified and trained employees that have served the State Department since September 1996. On May 9, 2008, 300 employees were terminated from this center, and at the end of this week, over 300 more employees will lose their jobs.
We urge you to keep the Dover facility open until the investigation into the CWA allegations is complete, so as to ensure that the Peckham Industries contract was awarded in good faith. We appreciate your attention to this matter, and please do not hesitate to contact our offices if we can be of any further assistance.
U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH)
U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman (I-CT)
U.S. Congressman Paul Hodes (D-NH)
U.S. Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter (D-NH)