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Feedback Fridays

By Brig. Gen. Laura L. Lenderman | 502d Air Base Wing Commander | May 17, 2019

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO, Texas —

Feedback Fridays is a weekly forum that aims to connect the 502d Air Base Wing with members of the Joint Base San Antonio community. Questions are collected during commander’s calls, town hall meetings and throughout the week.

If you have a question or concern, please send an email to RandolphPublicAffairs@us.af.mil using the subject line “Feedback Fridays.” Questions will be further researched and published as information becomes available.

Installation & Facilities

Q. Building 7243 on JBSA-Lackland has been broken for a month now with no word from the Civil Engineer team on a fix. As the air conditioning has had major repair work in the past, will CE ever replace the AC unit?

A. Thank you for your question. Our CE team works hard to try and keep our many aging systems that support our massive infrastructure footprint going.

CE reviewed their records for building 7243 and show that the system went down April 18 when both compressors went out. Two new compressors were ordered and arrived this week. The first unit was installed this past Wednesday; however, it experienced technical difficulties that will require further troubleshooting to fix. The second compressor is currently being installed and we are optimistic that the repair will function properly for that unit.

In regards to a major repair, there is currently no project scheduled; however, CE will work with the facility manager to develop an appropriate investment strategy. Thank you for your patience and please continue to let us know how we can help!

Q. I’ve been here for a month, and have been driving from east side to west side or vice versa, through the Luke and Selfridge gates, sometimes multiple times a day.

I don’t understand the reason to check the ID again if we just got out of the West Gate and are driving toward East Gate (or vice versa) since we have already been vetted to get on the base.

Can we apply a new rule that if we travel through either side of the gate to the other side, the ID checked is not needed. Of course, during the morning rush hour, this rule would NOT apply since it may just raise some obvious security concerns. My suggestion is this rule can be activated after 9 a.m. or 10 a.m. maybe, and provide a smoother travel flow from either side of the base, the security forces personnel at the gate will still have the final to decision to let the vehicle to pass through or not by using simple hand gesture for “keep coming through” or “STOP” to check our ID.

A. Thank you for sharing this idea with us. Our Defenders work hard to avoid unnecessary delays at the gates.

But, security is, and has to be, their top priority. To that end, in order to mitigate the need for vetting a vehicle leaving the base, even just to cross Military Highway, a Defender would need to dedicate focus purely on that vehicle all the way into the next gate.

With the myriad of things our Defenders are looking for and watching, unfortunately, it’s not practical to narrow focus to individual vehicles in order to avoid having to re-check credentials. While the bridge that connects the two sides of JBSA-Lackland may not always be convenient, it is the only way we can move traffic from one side of the base to the other without re-vetting access credentials.

Q. I have a two-part question. First, when will the marquee sign at JBSA-Randolph Lindsey Gate get fixed? There is a big white line running through the top of the messages and it makes it impossible to read. Second, when will more marquee signs be placed around JBSA-Randolph in order to reach more people here on base?  I am thinking one should be placed in the BX and Commissary parking lot, South Gate, or base housing areas?

A. Thank you for your questions regarding the marquees at JBSA-Randolph.

Our 502d Air Base Wing Public Affairs team, in close coordination with the 502d Civil Engineering Group and the 502d Communications Squadron, are analyzing the issue with the marquee in order to determine whether the existing unit can be repaired or if a replacement is the best option. We hope to have this resolved in the near future.

The second part of your question about additional marquees will require a bit more planning as well as allocation of funds. I agree that base marquees are a very important way to ensure information gets out to the base populace in a timely manner. We will be sure to keep you informed of our progress via the JBSA.mil web page and also in the JBSA Legacy newspaper. In the meantime, please join our Joint Base San Antonio Facebook page to stay aligned with the latest events at all of our operating locations!

Q. I have a question about the personal usage of electrical consumption, such as charging one’s personal vehicle at government expense.

I have noticed in quite a few areas now that military and civilian personnel are using extension cords to charge their personal electrical POVs across JBSA.

Is this legal to consume electrical power that the government pays for to charge their POV on a daily basis? Should the facility managers perform a walk around of their facilities and report this type of abuse? What is the appropriate procedures of reporting this type of abuse?

A. Great question and thank you for bringing this to our attention!

Individuals should not use government resources, to include electricity, to charge their personal electric vehicles, or PEVs. Department of Defense regulations require employees to protect and conserve government property, and employees must not use government property for other than authorized activities. While there is no written JBSA policy on this specific subject, the conduct is still prohibited.

In certain situations, a supervisor may permit the limited use of government property for personal use, when it does not adversely affect the performance of official duties; is of reasonable duration and frequency; and creates no significant additional cost to the Government.

Using government resources to charge a PEV is not permissible as a limited use of Government property. It also poses potential fire and safety hazard risks.

In 2015, the “Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act” authorized agencies to allow employees, and other authorized users, to access existing or install new charging stations. The act requires the collection of fees to recover associated costs of use.

At JBSA, we do not have any existing charging stations available. We are; however, currently researching plans that could add charging stations in certain locations. Until then, employees shall protect and conserve Government property (including electricity to charge their PEVs) and shall not use it for other than authorized activities.

Miscellaneous

Q. Basic Military Training graduation events cause significant traffic delays at JBSA-Lackland gates 50 weeks of the year. Is there any way to adjust the graduation schedule at JBSA-Lackland on Thursday mornings to avoid rush hour? Easiest fix is to change the report time for families to 8:30 a.m., giving plenty of time for all of us to get through the gates without waiting 30 to 45 minutes.

A. Thank you for your feedback. We understand your frustration. Our Security Forces do their best to work with the 37the Training Wing to manage congestion during BMT events.

Some of actions we take to mitigate congestion are flexing gate hours, dedicating lanes of travel, and increasing manpower at certain gates.

Even with those solutions, however, as you point out, the congestion can still be severe. We’ll take your question and work with the 37th TRW leadership to discuss additional options that could help alleviate traffic on BMT graduation days. Thank you for your continued patience and thanks again for the feedback … keep it coming!

Q. What ever happened to the Air Force incentive flights that used to occur many years ago? People who had done great achievements, reenlisting, etc., were offered an incentive flight by the Air Force. Can we bring back incentive flights?

A. Great question. I asked a similar question when I arrived here last summer.

The incentive flight program is now called the Familiarization Flight, or Fam Flight, Program. Our mission partners in the 149th Fighter Wing and 433rd Airlift Wing at JBSA-Lackland and the 12th Flying Training Wing at JBSA-Randolph offer flights to familiarize members with the F-16 (149th FW), C-5 (433rd AW), T-38 and T-6 (12th FTW) aircraft.

Flights are on a space-available basis, and may be contingent upon medical clearance and ability to accomplish specific training requirements. Each flying wing has a relatively long waiting list, so flights could take some time to actually schedule.

Nominating someone for a Fam Flight can be done through your respective chain of command. The member's respective wing (or equivalent headquarters level) can then reach out to the appropriate flying wing's Operation Support Squadron to work through the process of getting the member added to the waiting list.

For folks in our wing, we’ll work with your commanders and directors to ensure the information is disseminated so we have the opportunity to recognize folks for a job well done with a Fam Flight!

Q. Is it possible to have a JBSA Wingman Day? We could work with all our mission partners for a day to pause and connect.

A. Thank you very much for your question. With 266 mission partners across JBSA, diversity is one of our greatest strengths.

Unfortunately, the large diversity in mission sets across JBSA also creates a challenge; especially when it comes to organizing events where we limit services. There are many partner mission functions, which can't be halted, in whole or in part: security forces, cyber defense, medical, force support, and the many training missions, etc.

That said, every commander and director at every command level is encouraged to, and does to some extent, engage in Wingman Day and Wingman Day-like activities. Additionally, our Force Support Group, Religious Affairs Teams, major Army mission partners, USO, San Antonio area community partners, and many other organizations, frequently arrange events where the JBSA population as a whole can get together for fun and fellowship.

We highly encourage everyone to take advantage of any and all of these offerings!