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In a May 18, 2004 letter, the Chairman of the House Select Committee on Homeland Security observed that many management and integration challenges remain at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and to strengthen the departmentwide reforms and transformation underway at DHS the Select Committee is considering options such as the Chief Operating Officer (COO) concept to help address these challenges. This letter describes the roles and responsibilities of an effective COO and presents certain options that could serve to strengthen and streamline management functions in a department as large and diverse as DHS. As agreed, we have summarized our reports on the COO concept, organizational transformation, as well as DHS's management and transformation challenges.

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