CVC addresses post concerns
February 24, 2014
ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. - The Community Voice Committee, or CVC, held its first meeting of the calendar year Feb. 11 in the Garrison main conference room to discuss issues regarding APG.
The committee, which meets bimonthly, is led by Garrison Commander Col. Gregory R. McClinton and Garrison Command Sgt. Maj. James E. Ervin.
"This is part of the colonel's efforts to gather representatives of the APG community and have a roundtable discussion on issues that affect the quality of life on post," said Staff Action Officer Karen Dern of the Office of the Garrison Commander.
Among the topics discussed at this month's meeting were crosswalk and parking lot painting, motorcycle safety on post, aggressive driving, traffic light timing, Corvias housing improvements, extending the deer hunting season at APG, active shooter training, and inclement weather and social media updating.
Each meeting, the committee agrees on closed issues from the previous meeting, receives updates for ongoing issues, and examines current issues provided prior to the meeting. Members are also given the opportunity to submit new issues for future review.
Aggressive driving was a topic that dominated much of the discussion, as issues were raised regarding crosswalks and speed limit adherence. Ervin suggested lowering the speed limit to 35 mph on Aberdeen Blvd. in anticipation of increased future pedestrian traffic in the area.
Correlating crosswalk traffic and aggressive driving, McClinton said, "There's nothing that prevents us from doing a traffic study. ... So we'll do further analysis, and we just need to make sure that people cross at the appropriate locations."
Committee members also requested an increased police presence and the placement of radar signs to combat dangerous driving habits.
Active shooter training will be scheduled in the near future for the housing residents with suggestions for simulated walk-through-style training sessions. Chief of Police Joel Holdford said active shooter training at APG is imperative.
"The good thing about the training is it doesn't matter where you're at. If you're outside Walmart, if you're at the commissary or if you're in your place of work, those steps you're supposed to take are the same and are put out by the Department of Homeland Security," he said. "We've been training on this for a very long time. We've been really trying to get the word out about what people should do if that unfortunate incident occurs."
The APG Police Department will continue to make active shooter training available on post, and each organization will be responsible for coordinating with police to conduct training sessions.
Corvias Military Living representatives said they are working on improving snow clearances around APG neighborhoods, promoting safe walking at APG by passing out safety belts to be worn by those walking or running on the installation, and adding to neighborhood beautification.
The Directorate of Public Works announced that designs for the running track to be built at Fanshaw Field are nearing completion.
At the meeting, participants agreed the Route 22 Gate for APG North will remain open during inclement weather and be minimally manned during installation delays. The Directorate of Emergency Services will continue to work on improving the coordination of post traffic during inclement weather.
The Garrison Public Affairs Office -- represented by Public Affairs Specialist Adrian Foss -- also announced plans for a new web portal to be launched by the end of March. The office is currently working on ways to send out text messages about post closings and delays via an opt-in service.
The PAO will post a banner with such information on its webpage and encourages post residents and employees to continue checking its Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/APGMd and using the SNOW line (410-278-SNOW) for the most recent updates. The new site will also post information about several critical services on post.
When asked whether KUSAHC would have a few clinical staff there if APG were to close early, Commander Lt. Col. David R. Zinnante answered that because 34 percent of his employees reside in Cecil County, Kirk follows APG guidance for late arrivals and closures. He added that because of this, Kirk will soon add a 24-hour nurse advice line to its services.
Dern said the CVC will continue pursuing issues until they are resolved or addressed. "People like it when they can come and sit down and discuss issues concerning them," Dern said. "They feel like their needs are being heard by the head of the Garrison. ... I think it helps build the community in general because everyone can come together. They have a voice and feel they have a say."
The CVC will soon have a link on the APG website where people can obtain updates on community issues. Post community members can submit any issues or concerns by using the Interactive Customer Evaluation system, which allows individuals to rate post services online. ICE is accessible via its website, ice.disa.mil.
Organizations represented at last week's meeting included the U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command; U.S. Army Test and Evaluation Command; U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command; Garrison Headquarters and Headquarters Company; APG Commissary; APG Civilian Personnel Advisory Center; Corvias Military Living; Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical and Biological Defense; Army and Air Force Exchange; U.S. Army Network Enterprise Center; APG Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation; Department of Plans, Mobilization, Training and Security; and the DPW.
CVC will hold its next meeting in April.