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Hartzler outlines services of her staff available for her constituents
Hartzler outlines services of her staff available for her constituents

U.S. Rep. Vicky Hartzler

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Nov. 2, 2012) — Good day. With much of the discussion on radio, TV, and newspapers focused on the elections, I want to move away from political issues and share some of the services available to you through your Fourth District Congressional Office.

The Washington, D.C. office and four district offices in Jefferson City, Harrisonville, Lebanon, and Sedalia exist to provide constituent services — helping citizens with problems involving federal agencies. I am pleased that so many Fourth District citizens are contacting us to take advantage of what we have to offer.

Sometimes the phone calls, emails, and letters we receive from constituents have to do with visits to Washington, D.C. and a desire to get a tour of the Capitol. We can arrange for that. We might also be able to set up a tour of the White House, depending on the timing of the visit. Let us know when you're traveling to Washington and we'll see what we can do.

At times a constituent simply wants to know if he or she resides in our congressional district, or needs to know details surrounding a piece of legislation that has been getting a lot of attention in the media, or wants to share an idea on how best to address the challenges facing us as a nation. We are here to listen and to help if we can. Legislative ideas are forwarded to me and are welcomed! Your input and feedback are vital to allow me to fully represent you. I appreciate your ideas and value your opinions, believing "We the People" can address any challenge facing us as a nation. For anyone who has a problem and feels it would be a "bother" to contact the congressional office to get an explanation or to be pointed in the right direction, rest assured it is NOT a bother to us. We are here to listen and serve and look forward to helping to solve small problems before they become large and — in some cases — unmanageable.

We also help citizens deal with concerns involving such issues as veterans' benefits, the IRS and taxes, Social Security, Medicare, and immigration matters. As much as I would like to, we cannot wave a magic wand to make all problems go away. We can and do act on behalf of our constituents by cutting through the red tape to put constituents in contact with the appropriate federal agency representative who can help resolve problems. Since January of this year, caseworkers in our offices have handled more than 1,200 requests for assistance. I am pleased that so many citizens of our district have reached out for help and that our staff members have been there to answer the call.

Keep in mind a caseworker will not make promises that cannot be kept. One of the key responsibilities of our caseworkers is to cut through the bureaucratic maze and put people in touch with the agency or agencies that deal with specific issues. Communication is the key to solving problems and our caseworkers help open those lines of communication. We cannot bend the rules but we can make sure the rules are working as they should to better serve the people of the Fourth District and the entire country. A lot of this begins with slicing through that government red tape that everyone rightfully complains about.

I hope you will take advantage of all that your Fourth District Congressional Office has to offer. Our Capitol Hill office is located at 1023 Longworth House Office Building in Washington, D.C. and can be reached at (202) 225-2876. In Jefferson City we are located at 2409 Hyde Park and our number is (573) 634-4884. The Harrisonville office, located at 1909 North Commercial Street, can be reached by calling (816) 884-3411. Our office in Lebanon is found at 219 North Adams Street, where the number is (417) 532-5582. In Sedalia, we are in the Pettis County Courthouse at 415 South Ohio, Suite 212B and available at (573) 634-4884. I look forward to seeing you in Washington or at one of our District offices in the near future.

Have a good week.

Vicky Hartzler was elected to Congress on Nov. 10, 2010. She serves on the House Armed Services Committee and the House Agriculture Committee, and can be reached online at www.hartzler.house.gov. She also maintains Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube feeds.

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