They have "performance expectations," and no incentives to do anything else. Say, they are "expected" to do ten per day. There is no eleven. Ever. Because, unionized government workers. Superior performance is punished, while doing the absolute minimum in order to keep the post turtles, diversity beans, and just outright retards from looking like the worthless schitebags they are is rewarded with months of vacation and insane compensation packages.
Government agencies rarely have a deadline, and even when the legislature or congress puts a deadline in the regulations, there is usually a way around it. (e.g., We decided you need to add a highway map showing your location, so our clock starts over once you submit that.) When I worked as a manager, I refused to hire anyone who had worked for the government. People get used to not having deadlines and they can get to a point where they never make one.
I did interview a young lady that I nearly hired who had worked for the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ). She was in an air permitting group that had their activities significantly delayed by a disagreement between Texas and EPA. So in January that year they sent her to work in the emissions inventory group, which was YEARS behind on auditing submissions. She worked hard and diligently and managed to get quite a few done, so around April she went to the boss and told him she was nearly caught up on the work he gave her. Instead of thanking her, he blew up and started yelling. "That work was supposed to last you until the end of the year! Look how you've screwed me up! Now I have to take work from the other people and tell them to slow down even more!!" That was the day she decided to seek new employment. Government agencies work to preserve their bureaucracy so that they protect their jobs.
We had an air permit that had to be renewed. Companies are required to submit the renewal application 6 months before the existing permit's expiration date. The necessary documentation takes up two 6-inch thick binders. So we did that. Five months later, the TCEQ called and said everything looked great, but they just changed their forms that go with the documentation, so we needed to resubmit those. It's about 100 pages. OK, we busted butts and did it. 5 months later, they called to say that everything looked great, but they just changed the forms again, so we needed to fill the new ones out. Now it was about 150 pages. So we did that and about 7 months later they finally approved the renewal. Then we had to post the document for public comment for 60 days, plus an extra 30 days in case EPA wanted to comment. Nobody commented, so we asked that they finalize the renewal. Well, now it had to go up through the chain of command until it reached the Commissioners and then they could review approval during their next session. Another 3 months wait. The interesting thing is that the expiration date is based on the original permit's expiration, so by the time it was finally signed off, it was halfway to the next renewal.
Dealing with government agencies is not for the faint of heart.