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Feedback Fridays

By Brig. Gen. Laura L. Lenderman | 502d Air Base Wing Commander | July 5, 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.

Personnel Issues

Q. Joggers at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, from 5 a.m. through daylight, have NO reflective gear and are wearing headsets.

In the past two months, I have had three Joggers run out in front of my car with NO reflective gear of any kind. All three were wearing headsets not paying attention to traffic.

From 2007 thru 2014, reflective gear was a mandatory safety requirement. Exercising of any kind on roads in dark and inclement weather required reflective gear.

As I understand, headsets are also not to be used on roads while jogging. What can be done to help make JBSA-Randolph a safer place for everyone?

A. Thank you for sharing your concerns … I greatly appreciate your question. Joggers at JBSA-Randolph are encouraged to wear highly visible clothing during hours of darkness and inclement weather, and the use of listening devices is still prohibited while running on the roadways in accordance with Air Force Instruction 91-207.

The 902nd Security Forces Squadron can cite violators on JBSA installations for wearing listening devices while jogging on the roadways. With the help of commanders and supervisors, we will send out Safety reminders to personnel about the rules for jogging on base. It’s currently briefed at all newcomer’s briefings, but we will ensure to emphasize the jogging rules and safe locations to jog.

The rules for jogging on base may be more stringent for personnel in other branches of service; it is recommended that those personnel check with their command.

Q. Non-appropriated funds supervisors are not eligible to receive union representation to file grievances or complaints. What agencies are out there to assist the NAF supervisor, when we ourselves are experiencing a negative work environment, bullying from our supervisor and fear of retaliation?

A. Thank you for the opportunity to provide this reminder to our workforce that we do not tolerate bullying and retaliation. In many cases, non-appropriated fund supervisors may file a complaint and/or appeal with the Air Force, the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Office, the Inspector General (IG), and/or the Office of Special Council (OSC).

If the complaint or appeal is in response to a formal disciplinary action or adverse action, then the Air Force will notify the employee of their complaint and/or appeal avenues. However, if the complaint or appeal is in response to an informal action, then the employee should contact the various offices to obtain basic administrative information.

If a non-bargaining NAF employee finds they need to file an administrative grievance, our NAF Human Resources Office can provide the process and procedures; however, they cannot represent an employee. Employees may obtain a representative of their choosing at their own expense.

Guidance related to NAF Appeal and Grievance Procedures for non-bargaining employees can be found within the following Instruction and Guide:

Outlined in AFI 34-301, dated June 2019, Non-appropriated Funds Personnel Management and Administration, Chapter 8, paragraph 8.1, “General. Employees may file an appeal or grievance to express dissatisfaction with matters relating to conditions of employment without fear of penalty or reprisal or the threat thereof.”

NAF Personnel Management and Administration Procedures Guide dated June 2019 Chapter 9, paragraph 9.1.2, “Filing an appeal or grievance does not reflect unfavorably upon either employee’s standing in the organization or the employee’s loyalty or value to the organization. An employee is free to use these procedures without fear or penalty or reprisal. No supervisor or other person acting in an official capacity for the AF may take, or threaten to take, any action of reprisal against an employee because that employee has exercised or expressed an intention to exercise any right under these procedures.”

Paragraph 9.1.3, “Whenever appropriate, all parties are encouraged to discuss and resolve disputes informally at the lowest levels. Policies regarding alternate dispute resolution techniques are addressed in Department of Defense Directive 5145.5, Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), April 22, 1996, as amended.”

Chapter 9.8. Representation. Paragraph 9.8.1, “An employee may be accompanied, represented, and advised by a representative of the employee’s choice at any stage of the procedure. The employee shall designate his or her the representative in writing. A written designation is changed only by the employee’s written notification to the official then considering the appeal or grievance. The employee bears all costs of representation.”

If an employee has questions in regards to the NAF Appeal and Grievance process please contact Daryl Rous, Human Resources Specialist (EMR/LMR) at 210-652-5841.

Installation & Facilities

Q. The roads at JBSA-Randolph have many potholes. While those are being fixed, is there a way to install extra street lights so JBSA-Randolph isn’t so dark and drivers can see the potholes?

Better lighting would make it easier to see potholes, joggers and the new speed bumps at the Lindsey Gate. Saving energy is important, but energy-saving lighting solutions should be available today.

A. Thank you for your question! Our Civil Engineer team is actively working to improve our roadways and traffic safety JBSA-wide, including pavement and pothole repairs, new and updated signage and paint striping, as well as improved lighting.

For any newly identified potholes, please report them through your unit’s facility manager, or if immediate safety concerns arise contact our CE Customer Service line direct at 210-671-1555.

Regarding lighting, we recently were successful with partnering with our local energy provider to help improve lighting at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston, and we are presently in the process of privatizing our utilities on JBSA-Randolph which may open up similar doors to work lighting improvements there.

In the meantime, CE will look to conduct a lighting survey to identify what areas require the greatest need, and to determine if the corrective actions should be to improve existing fixtures or add new.

If there are any easy fixes identified, CE will look to accomplish in-house, otherwise they will work to resolve through contracted means or through the privatized utility company. Lighting can also be a challenge as we try and balance safety with energy efficiency goals and light pollution concerns, however, we will do our best to ensure proper safety and security on our installations.

Q. In the morning, when there is a line at JBSA-Lackland waiting to turn left from Military Drive into Luke West gate, there are people that bypass the line and do a quarter turn at the closed gate (Luke East) to come straight across.

Some of us have waited patiently while others decide to speed and turn towards the closed gate just to U-turn and come straight across. It happens every morning. I have seen active duty, retirees, DOD civilians … everyone do it.

My recommendation would be to put down a concrete strip. The one individual that decided to turn right into the crosswalk and then make their left to come straight across might avoid the barrier though.

A: Thank you for your interest in the safety of personnel traveling onto our installations. Your question was timely, as we were able to discuss it during a Traffic Safety Working Group meeting at JBSA-Lackland June 26.

The specific concern you raised, along with other behavior on Military Drive, such as drivers stopping in the middle lane to cut into the left turn lane toward the Luke East gate, were discussed during this working group.

Likely outcomes include education on observance of traffic laws on Military Drive and discussions with the Texas Department of Transportation to determine whether physical improvements on Military Drive can help the flow of traffic during peak times in the morning.

Specific to your question, since the roadway leading into the Luke West gate is mostly on government property there are options under review that we may be able to implement soon.  

We ask all drivers to be considerate of others as they access our installation, obey traffic laws, and use all 4 gates on military drive during the peak hours of 6-9 a.m.

Spreading traffic across all gates during peak times will reduce the congestion observed when a preponderance of traffic attempts to access the single Luke East gate.

Q. My question involves the C-5 side of the flightline at JBSA-Lackland.

When we are marshaling planes in this area, we have to walk through the grass to the nose of the plane. This is a problem because the grass is usually long, and I worry about being bitten by rattlesnakes or any other venomous snake.

My solution would be to lay a concrete walk way that stretches the span of all the planes in this section of the parking apron. When walking through this area, engines are running, so even if a rattlesnake was to “rattle,” we wouldn’t hear it.

In addition, because of the way the Red Line is set up, we have to walk a large section of the grassy area just to position ourselves to marshal the jet. I think this would be an inexpensive way to avoid a fatality.

Thank you in advance for your response. I hope something can be done because for me personally, I hate walking through this and I don’t exactly feel safe.

A. Thank you for bringing this concern to our attention. Regarding the long grass and snake issue, much of this is a result of the high levels of rain we have received over the past month which has made it difficult for our grounds maintenance contract to keep up. CE has coordinated with the contractor to address this concern and to keep the grass at a more reasonably maintained height.

CE will also increase their efforts to mitigate snakes in that area. Regarding the suggested new sidewalk, please engage with your unit’s facility manager to submit an Air Force Form 332 Work Task Request with CE that identifies where exactly you are proposing to have the new walkway constructed.

Provided there are no regulation or siting issues, this may be a viable solution to your concern, though the new request will need to compete with other priorities for potential fiscal year 2020 funding. You can also request that the safety office assess the situation to determine if a Risk Assessment Code, or RAC, is warranted, which would help elevate the priority.

Miscellaneous

Q. Does the Gateway Club at JBSA-Lackland really need the club membership program? A lot of people do not understand the real benefits of it.

A. Thanks for the opportunity to highlight the benefits of being a member of one of our JBSA clubs. 

Belonging to our clubs brings tangible benefits to include: $10 lunch buffet or Thursday night dinner buffet birthday coupon, two-month calendar mail outs with coupons, quarterly Customer Appreciation Night, $1 off lunch program, Thursday night dinner buffet, Sunday breakfast buffet, $2 off special events, special occasion drawings members only eligible, 10 percent discount on all food and beverage on catered events, the ability to host events like retirements, promotion, wedding, anniversary, or birthday with no room fees, reciprocal privileges with other Air Force Clubs, free admission to special events throughout the year, a chance to win a $10,000 Bingo jackpot at the Kendrick Club (non-members receive only 50 percent), complimentary hors d’oeuvres during Friday afternoons social hours, and a free birthday meal at JBSA-Randolph’s Parr Club.  

Club membership also helps us uphold our storied Air Force heritage and traditions, and provides the JBSA community with an opportunity to recharge, socialize, and celebrate in a comfortable, elegant setting. 

If all that isn’t enough, we’ve funded significant capital improvements in all three clubs to give our members venues worthy of holding some of life’s most important events.  I encourage everyone to become a club member today at one of our JBSA Clubs!