Make your own free website on Tripod.com

City of Charlottesville, VA Fire Department
STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURES


Organization

Chapter: IV - General Administration
Subject: Citizen Complaints
Code: 1-IV-10
Revised: 6-10-96

10.01  PURPOSE

      A.  To  centralize  and  assure that all citizens' requests are
          handled in a timely,  equitable,  courteous  and  sensitive
          manner.
      B.  This  procedure  is  designed  to  continue  the  Citizen's
          Assistance  Program  at  a  high  level  of  service,   and
          eliminate the possibility of citizens' complaints/ requests
          not receiving proper attention.

10.02  POLICY

      A.  The   City   Manager's  Office  shall  be  responsible  for
          receiving and processing the  requests  and  complaints  of
          citizens   that   relate  to  the  functions  of  the  City
          government.
      B.  Requests  or  complaints  will  be  assigned  by  the  City
          Manager's Office to the appropriate department/division for
          a timely response.
      C.  Each  departmental response will be reviewed by the Request
          Coordinator to insure that it is complete,  equitable,  and
          consistent with City policies.
      D.  If   a  departmental  response  is  not  satisfactory,  the
          Administrative Assistant to the City Manager will work with
          the   department   until   a  reasonable  response  can  be
          formulated.
      E.  The   affected   department/division   is  responsible  for
          contacting the citizen by phone, in person,  or  by  letter
          within  ten  (l0) working days following the receipt of the
          complaint.

l0.03 DEFINITIONS

      A.  Request for Service or Complaint
          A  citizen  inquiry  that  relates to the functions of city
          government.
      B.  (RFS) Request for Service
          Four  part,  NCR  carbonless  paper  (Exhibit A) upon which
          relevant portions  of  a  citizens'  request/complaint  are
          written and forwarded for departmental response.
      C.  Request Coordinator
          Administrative Assistant to the City Manager.
      D.  Index Card
          Address  file,  3  x  5  white  card  which should list the
          citizens  name,  address,   telephone   number,   a   brief
          description  of  the  request/complaint, date received, and
          request number.
      E.  Index Card
          Location  file,  3  x  5  white  card which should list the
          address or vicinity of the request, a brief description  of
          the request/complaint, date received, and request number.
      F.  Request Number
          Composed  of the calendar year and the chronological number
          of the request.  Example 83-327.
      G.  Ten Day Due Date
          The date on which the citizen is due a response to his/ her
          request or complaint.  Only actual  working  days  will  be
          counted (weekends, holidays excluded).

10.04 RESPONSIBILITY

      A.  Requests/complaints  received  by the City Manager's Office
          will  be  processed  and  forwarded  to   the   appropriate
          department.
      B.  Citizens'  request  and complaints concerning the receiving
          department  will  be  processed  according  to   procedures
          outlined in Section 10.05.
      C.  Each  request  shall  be  analyzed and the citizen answered
          within ten (l0) working days from the date on which he/ she
          first contacted City Hall.  The Administrative Assistant to
          the City  Manager  shall  be  informed  of  all  delays  in
          response.   When a period longer than ten (l0) working days
          is required for response, the citizen must be contacted  by
          the department/division and given a new response date which
          shall not extend any longer than  an  additional  ten  (l0)
          working days.

10.05 PROCEDURE

      A.  A  request/complaint  may  be  received  from  a citizen by
          telephone, letter, mailout coupon, or in person by the City
          Manager's Office.
      B.  The  City  Manager's  Office  will  complete  all  relevant
          portions of the Request  for  Service  form  including  the
          category   and  district  number  following  a  request  or
          complaint.
      C.  Address  and  location  file  cards will be compiled on the
          request and filed  alphabetically  in  the  central  filing
          system maintained by the Administrative Assistant.
      D.  The  Administrative Assistant shall notify the citizen that
          a response to his/her complaint will be made  in  ten  (l0)
          working days.
      E.  The  Administrative  Assistant will forward the Request for
          Service form to the appropriate department/division.
      F.  The  receiving  department/division  shall  respond  to the
          complaint/request within ten (l0) working days.
      G.  The  department  will complete the remainder of the Request
          of Service form  after  responding  to  the  complaint  and
          transfer  a  copy of the completed form to the Public Works
          Department.
      H.  All  departmental responses will be in accordance with City
          policies and procedures to insure equitable disposition  of
          all requests.  All answers must be as complete as possible.
          What action, if any, will be taken and the  date  by  which
          the action will be taken must be included.
      I.  Should  a response appear not to be in accordance with city
          policies and  procedures  instituted  to  insure  equitable
          disposition   of   all   requests,  the  Citizen's  Request
          Coordinator will  so  notify  the  City  Manager  and  will
          receive  advice from that office in not more than three (3)
          working days.
      J.  The  department's reply must always be given to the citizen
          by a departmental representative.  This reply can be  given
          in  writing,  over  the  phone, or in person.  However, the
          date and nature of the response must always be recorded  on
          the Request for Service form.
      K.  Requests/complaints  taken  by  the Public Works Department
          will  be  processed  and  referred   to   the   appropriate
          department/division.  Requests/complaints received directly
          by departments/divisions shall be handled by  the  affected
          office.



Go BACK to Book One Contents page.

For Help using this system, send e-mail to:

Charles Werner (werner@ci.charlottesville.va.us)