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PR- 020-04
January 27, 2004


Customer Service Levels Maintained as Workloads Rise in Response to the Introduction of 311

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today released the Preliminary Mayor’s Management Report (PMMR) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2004.  The PMMR provides a snapshot of how the City is performing four months into the fiscal year and forecasts expected levels of service based on the City’s Preliminary Budget. 

The results of the PMMR demonstrate the increasing popularity of the 311 Citizen Service Center as a means for accessing non-emergency services, and the success that City agencies have had in stepping up to meet the public’s needs. The demand for services in key areas tracked in the PMMR, such as potholes and noise, jumped by nearly 20% when compared to the first four months of last year, prior to the launching of 311. Despite this dramatic increase in workload, agencies are on track to meet their goals for Fiscal 2004.  In addition, the preliminary performance results indicate that the quality of City services remain high.  Vital services have largely been maintained or improved over the reporting period and for Fiscal Year 2005, agencies are projecting performance levels that are similar to, or better than the prior fiscal year.

“Our 311 system revolutionized the way New Yorkers interact with and receive services from our government. I am proud that through better management we have been able to use this innovative tool to meet New Yorker’s most pressing needs,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Despite the most severe fiscal crisis in a generation and cutting more than $3 billion from the City’s budget, New York has continued to provide the services our citizen’s depend upon.”

The PMMR includes a wealth of statistics that report on services that affect the lives of New Yorkers. These statistics can be viewed on at, which has been newly overhauled to be more interactive and to enhance City government accountability.  The website includes, for the first time, monthly performance and inquiry information generated by 311, and a “scorecard” for street cleanliness ratings.  While still being improved, ‘My Neighborhood Statistics’ --- an Internet tool that allows residents to view performance by neighborhood – is being expanded to provide monthly, rather than annual, performance statistics.

The following highlights some of the preliminary results reflected in the Fiscal 2004 PMMR.  Unless otherwise noted, the trends described below compare July-October 2002 to July-October 2003.

  • New York is the safest large City in America: With the number of major felony crimes falling by 4% from 54,956 to 52,884, New York is once again the safest large city in the United States.

  • 311 calls increased dramatically: During the first four months of Fiscal 2004, the 311 Citizen Service Center logged over 2 million calls. Monthly call volume has risen by 56%, from 342,296 calls in June to 535,275 calls in October.

  • Traffic fatalities are on track to be lower than a decade ago: Traffic fatalities fell from 135 to 113; this 16% drop continues a ten-year downward trend.

  • Potholes were repaired in record time: The percent of potholes repaired in 30 days increased from 77% to 88%, even as pothole complaints doubled, from 6,007 to 12,232, because of the ease of dialing 311.

  • Street cleanliness improved: The citywide rating for acceptably clean streets climbed from 85% to 90.3%, the highest average rating for the reporting period in nearly 30 years.

  • Park conditions exceeded goals: Overall parks conditions were 84% acceptable, versus a target of 83%, while play equipment and playground safety surfaces were rated 94% and 93%, exceeding their 90% target. At 87% acceptable, cleanliness ratings were slightly off target but are expected to reach the 89% goal by year-end. 

  • Fire Department response times rose due to the citywide power failure on August 14-15: Response times to structural fires averaged 4 minutes 25 seconds, increasing by 11 seconds, while ambulance response to life-threatening medical emergencies averaged 7 minutes 8 seconds.  High 911 call volumes and telecommunications problems during the blackout were factors.

  • Noise and air complaints were addressed quickly:  While noise complaints to the Department of Environmental Protection more than doubled, 86.3% were responded to within five days, exceeding the 85% goal. DEP also responded within 5 days to 85.3% of air quality complaints, though the volume of complaints rose by 39%. Increasing noise and air complaints are due to the ease and accessibility of the 311 Citizen Service Center.

  • More emergency building complaints were responded to faster:  While 311 resulted in additional complaint volume, the Department of Buildings responded to over 96% of emergency complaints within 1.5 days.

  • Response times to public housing emergencies were better than target:  Emergency complaints were responded to within 1.44 hours compared to a target of 24 hours, while non-emergencies were addressed within 10.9 days compared to a goal of 15 days. Response times to elevator complaints were slightly above target at 5.1 hours.

  • More school children were immunized: The percent of school children receiving required immunizations increased from 82.1% to 85.0%.

  • Rodent exterminations outpaced complaints: Pest control complaints rose by 3% to 8,530, but exterminations rose to 22,490, up 17%.

  • Math scores improved for grade school: Nearly 42% of students in grades 3 through 8 met or exceeded standards for math during the 2002-2003 school year, up from 37.3% the previous year, and surpassing the target of 39.5%.

  • Math Regents scores declined: During the 2002-2003 school year the percent of high school students with a minimum score of 55 on the Math Regents exam fell from 72.3% to 66.8%, below the 73% goal for the school year.

  • Graduation rates improved. During the 2002-2003 school year, the percent graduating from high school within four years rose from 50.8% to 53.4% for general education students, and from 7.9% to 8.8% for special education students.

  • More public school teachers were certified: While the total number of teachers employed fell by 2% to 78,232, the percent that are certified rose from 86.3% to 98.7%.

  • Efficiencies were achieved in school construction: The on-time completion rate for capital project work at existing schools rose from 51% to 65%, while the percent completed within budget was virtually unchanged at 91%.

  • Food stamps and Medicaid continued to grow: The number of food stamp recipients increased 10%, to 918,300, and the number of New Yorkers enrolled in Medicaid grew by 12%, to 2.36 million. Most new recipients of food stamps and Medicaid were not receiving public assistance.

  • The number of children in foster care reached a 16-year low: The number of children in foster care was 23,264, a drop of 12%, and the lowest level since 1987.

  • Fewer families entered homeless shelters, but the number of single adults grew: While the number of families in homeless shelters remains high, families entering shelters for the first time fell by 7% from 2,757 to 2,561. The number of single adults entering shelters for the first time rose by 14%, to 3,849.

  • Homeless families placed in permanent housing soared: A total of 2,319 families were placed in permanent housing, an increase of 47%. Placements in permanent housing for single adults declined by 6%, to 1,806.

  • Rent increase exemptions were processed faster for seniors: The average processing time for applications to the Senior Citizens Rent Increase Exemption program fell from 34 to 32 days.

  •  Utilization of senior centers dropped: The proportion of the Department for the Aging senior centers that operate at 90% of capacity fell from 81% to 68%. The City is working with underutilized centers to explore reasons for declining usage.

  • School safety incidents rose: The total number of crimes and non-criminal safety incidents in the public schools grew from 2,795 to 2,972, a rise of 6%. Major crimes in the schools rose slightly from 316 incidents to 321, an increase 1.6%.

  • Civilian fire fatalities increased but remain at historically low levels:  The number of civilians dying in fires rose from 18 to 29.

  • Complaints concerning police officer actions rose: The Civilian Complaint Review Board received 1,912 complaints about police officer misconduct, an increase of 310 complaints.

  • Violence in jails remained at low levels: Assaults on staff declined by 10%, to 132. There was a minimal increase in violence among inmates, with stabbings and slashings increasing from 9 to 14 and fights/assault infractions rising from 2,014 to 2,034.

  • More minority and women-owned businesses were certified.  The number of newly certified businesses in the City’s Minority/Women-Owned Businesses Program rose by 300%.  


Edward Skyler / Jordan Barowitz   (212) 788-2958

More Resources
Preliminary Fiscal 2004 Mayor's Management Report