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Joint Base San Antonio MOA becomes official

By Ron Rogers | San Antonio Joint Program Office | Dec. 16, 2009

RANDOLPH AIR FORCE BASE, Texas — The Army and Air Force vice chiefs of staff recently signed a memorandum of agreement outlining how Joint Base San Antonio, under the leadership of the 502nd Air Base Wing, will operate and provide services to three military installations in San Antonio.

In addition to establishing a timeline for transition to the new installation management organization, the MOA details what and how services will be delivered and the standards used to determine required support with implementation and resource transfer, as well as the command structure of JBSA.

The Joint Basing Command structure includes a general officer serving as the air base wing commander, along with a deputy Joint Basing Commander and three geographical separated groups located on Lackland, Randolph and Fort Sam Houston.

"The largest challenge with our MOA came in understanding and allocating expenses as a result of the coming Base Realignment and Closure growth in San Antonio. No other Joint Base is experiencing the kind of growth that is occurring at our San Antonio installations," said Dr. CEM Maxwell, San Antonio Joint Program Office deputy director.

"In addition to bringing Fort Sam Houston into the joint base, we are the only location combining two bases from the same service: Lackland and Randolph. Finally, we are the largest joint base with many varied military units to support, and that has created some challenges."

Next year will be a milestone year for JBSA as the installation support transition period begins Jan. 31 with initial operational capability and culminates with full operational capability Oct. 1. At IOC, Randolph's 12th Flying Training Wing and Lackland's 37th Training Wing will relinquish installation support, including some wing staff activities, and the mission support groups to the leadership of the 502nd ABW. The U.S. Army Garrison at Fort Sam Houston will begin restructuring in April with continued progression to FOC on October 1, 2010.

The actual transfer of real property, civilian employees, and budget will occur at FOC. The signing of the JBSA MOA highlighted an unprecedented level of participation by the Army and Air Force to commit the right manpower mix and resource structure to deliver world class support. In the end, JBSA will employ an estimated 8,000 people to support more than 80,000 military and civilian employees, making it the largest single installation support enterprise in the Defense Department.

"This imminent stand up of the San Antonio Joint Base, while largely transparent to the civilian community, is a major milestone for the military community in San Antonio. We look forward to having the best joint base in the Department of Defense and owe a debt of thanks to the many Air Force and Army personnel who have worked so hard over the past two years to make this a success," said Dr. Maxwell.