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JBSA-Fort Sam Houston leaders host family housing town hall, address resident issues

By Sgt. Andrew S. Valles | U.S. Army North Public Affairs | Feb. 25, 2019

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas —

Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston leadership held a family housing town hall at the Fort Sam Houston Community Center Feb. 21 to provide information and gain feedback as part of an ongoing Army-wide effort to resolve unsatisfactory conditions in Army family housing.

Lt. Gen. Jeffrey S. Buchanan, U.S. Army North commander and senior Army commander, and other leaders from JBSA-Fort Sam Houston and Lincoln Military Housing answered questions and addressed issues raised by Soldiers and their families regarding various housing issues.

“We want to identify the issues, identify the maintenance problems, talk about how we respond to those and ultimately improve the quality of life,” Buchanan said.

Buchanan encouraged all residents to use the existing reporting systems to request maintenance of their quarters and asked for candid feedback.

“We have work to do and we will try to do this as a team,” said Mark Greszler, Army Support Activity manager. “With our partners at Lincoln Military Housing, we are going to figure this out and fix the issues we have. We need to respect our service members and families. We owe you that and we are going to fix this.”

Residents told leaders that they were upset with poor maintenance, contractors leaving debris laying around, mold, pest control, physical security, HVAC and plumbing issues, repeat work orders with lack of resolution for issues and lack of cleanliness or repairs in the homes during tenant turnover.

Many residents said they just want to have issues fixed right the first time instead of having to go back and forth with maintenance on “Band-aid” fixes.

Within the next 30 days, senior commanders will complete visits to family homes and Soldier barracks – with appropriate notice and consent of families – to assess the scale and scope of housing issues and provide feedback to senior Army leaders.

In a recent statement, Secretary of the Army Dr. Mark Esper stated, “We are deeply troubled by the recent reports highlighting the deficient conditions in some of our family housing. It is unacceptable for our families who sacrifice so much to have to endure these hardships in their own homes. Our most sacred obligation as Army leaders is to take care of our people – our Soldiers and our family members.”

According to a Feb. 21 Army.mil story, the U.S. Army’s top three senior leaders met with housing contractor senior executives to discuss how to fix the housing issues.

The article stated “poor customer service was identified as a top issue, and a number of immediate, mid-term and long-term initiatives were discussed. The CEOs agreed to work on a “Tenant Bill of Rights,” suspend certain fees, and allow Soldiers to suspend their rent payments if they believe that service is not satisfactory. In addition, they made commitments to improve work-order transparency through an online tracking system, and to ensure sufficient numbers of trained staff are available at each installation to address housing problems in a timely manner.”

JBSA-Fort Sam Houston family housing residents can submit service requests 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by calling “Lincoln at your Service” at 210-225-5564 or by submitting routine requests online at http://www.lincolnmilitary.com.

If assistance with your online access is needed, call the LMH office at 210-270-7638. Watkins Terrace residents should call 210-832-8104. In-person service requests are taken at the Fort Sam Houston Residence Center on Dickman Road and at the Watkins Terrace Community Center on Frazier Road between 8 a.m. and 5 p. m.

For all maintenance emergencies, call “Lincoln at Your Service” at 210-225-5564 or call the LMH office.

For additional information, visit https://www.army.mil/leaders/sa/questions/ or https://www.samhouston.army.mil/ASA/. Make routine maintenance requests online at http://www.lincolnmilitary.com.