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209 House Office Moves, All in a (Few) Day’s Work for CAO

Dan Beard, the newly installed Chief Administrative Officer of the House, has been involved in a number of Congressional office moves during his previous stints on various House and Senate staffs.

“I always marveled at how easy it was,” Beard said of his view from the staff side.

It wasn’t until he became the CAO in January that Beard developed a bit more perspective on all that was involved in the effort.

At a ceremony Friday to honor CAO and Architect of the Capitol employees for their work during the House’s transition from the 109th to 110th Congresses, Beard simply told the assembled employees, “You guys moved mountains.”

Between the beginning of December and the opening of the 110th Congress on Jan. 3:

• a total of 209 Member, committee and leadership offices were moved on the House side;

• 8,392 pieces of furniture were moved along with about 4,900 phones;

• painters used about 4,100 gallons of paint while 10,000 yards of drapery were installed;

• workers replaced some 15,000 fluorescent light tubes and hung 5,400 pictures; and

• 11,000 individual Web addresses were changed, hundreds of new BlackBerrys were purchased and thousands of staffing and personnel transactions were processed.

And that’s only part of the effort.

“It took more than 1,000 people to execute this in a short amount of time,” said Frank Tiscione, the AOC’s superintendent of House office buildings. “We have tough clients but they were very happy with what we did.”

(On the Senate side, only a handful of lawmakers switched offices, and those moves took place after the 110th was under way.)

At the ceremony Friday, a few special awards were given out to the joint AOC/CAO teams that both coordinated and physically moved the individual offices.

Jennifer Hodges from the CAO’s office and the AOC’s Mark Italiano were recognized for coordinating the most office moves, 30, among the nine planning teams. Awards also were presented to the labor teams that were able to physically move an entire office in about four hours.

The award for the shortest move went to the team that relocated Rep. Grace Napolitano (D-Calif.) from Room 1609 in the Longworth House Office Building to Room 1610.

Beard noted that one of the new initiatives instituted during the 110th transition was to enlist the services of the General Services Administration to help coordinate moves that took place in many of the 900 House district offices around the country.

“This is a massive effort requiring the work of hundreds of people that work late into the night and usually don’t get a lot of credit,” Beard said. “We’re very proud of the fact that on Jan. 3 all the Members’ offices were ready to go.”

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