President Joe Biden signed an executive order in early December intended to improve basic government services such as renewing a passport, claiming Social Security benefits, filing taxes, and getting through airport security.
The order directs 17 federal agencies to improve the customer experience in more than 30 areas including passport renewals and airport security screening and check-in.
Administration officials said they’re trying to help people navigate a too-often tangled web of government websites, offices and phone numbers.
President Biden said that he believes the changes will help prove that democracy still works for its citizens.
“I know it sounds like a simple thing,” Biden said when he signed the order, flanked by cabinet officials, “but I think it’s pretty consequential.”
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the changes will take six to 12 months to implement.
The ability to apply for passports online, for example, will start on a limited basis this month but will take time to dramatically expand, according to Neera Tanden, a senior advisor to Biden.