Stewart, Hunter hold Town Halls
February 11, 2010
<b> FORT STEWART, HUNTER ARMY AIRFIELD, Ga. </b> - Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield garrison commander, Col. Kevin Milton headed Fort Stewart's last full-blown town hall meeting at Club Stewart, Feb. 4 as he encouraged residents to continue communicating with Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield leadership via dial-the-boss, ICE comments, Ask Rocky and other social media available on the Team Stewart Web site.
Colonel Milton said that all feedback have an impact. He said each and every comment or concern is studied by the garrison. the appropriate staff prepares a detailed response to the comment or concern, and the garrison responds to the customer's concern with a solution.
The garrison commander didn't rule out town hall meetings. He said community concerns will continue to be addressed, as needed, but on a smaller scale, especially during budget constraints times. Future meetings will not encompass all the directors and their supporting staff.
Both Col. Milton and his wife Christi encouraged residents to become familiar with and to religiously recycle. Declaring that recycling saves the installation thousands of dollars; proper recycling saves even more dollars.
Town Hall issues were recorded and will be published in a future edition of the Frontline along with the appropriate installation response to each issue.
Soldiers, Families or Army Civilians who have concerns or comments can visit the Team Stewart Web site at www.stewart.army.mil and using the left-hand menu of icons can provide feedback to the command via 3rd ID Facebook or ICE. Additionally, a host of informational pages, to include Marne Messages, are published via the left menu.
Ask Rocky is another form of feedback medium available on the right menu just below the "Rocky" symbol on the Team Stewart web site. However, if you want to leave a voice mail for the commander, just dial 767-BOSS.
<b>Hunter holds own Town Hall meeting</b>
Hunter Army Airfield spouses and retirees aired their concerns to leaders face-to-face at Hunter Army Airfield during the Town Hall meeting held at Hunter Club, Feb. 3. It was the first meeting held separately from Fort Stewart's quarterly meetings in which Hunter previously participated by video teleconference.
A panel of leaders attended, including Lt. Col. Jose Aguilar, Hunter garrison commander, along with directorate and tenant service representatives from the installation, shared information of community interest and addressed issues that were raised.
The meeting opened with a slide presentation that listed upcoming events and switched periodically to issues of concern by those who attended. The overarching concern that drew passion from attendees was recent budget cuts and their impact on activities and services on the installation. Doreen Vandal, wife of Brig. Gen. Thomas Vandal, 3rd Infantry Division deputy commanding general-support, expressed concern and disappointment about how the budget cuts affected the Hunter Library's closure.
Vandal asked Beverly Childs, Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation deputy director, if the library could reopen if staffed with volunteers. Childs said alternate options are being considered in lieu of the closing; however, there are legal issues under consideration, and a staff person is also needed to provide operational oversight. The options under consideration were discussed, including a book shuttle to transport books from Fort Stewart to Hunter. Also expressing his disappointment about the closure was Lt. Col. Aguilar, who said he is also looking into reopening the library, pending legal guidance.
Other issues discussed included landscaping in the housing areas on post and the March Spring Clean Up; new physicians at Tuttle Army Health Clinic; flu vaccine availability at the Hunter PX; the need for additional youth activities on post; the upcoming opening of a CYSS facility, the construction of future CYS facilities and the need for additional DFMWR facilities and services at Hunter.
Chaplain (Lt. Col.) Jay Hearn spoke about the construction of Hunter's new chapel, slated for 2014.
Captain Bill Ward, officer in charge, Hunter Legal Center, closed the meeting with an announcement that despite budget cuts, the Marne Tax Center will be operational this year beginning Feb. 16 at the Legal Assistance Center for free tax return preparation and electronic filing. Hours of operation will be Monday - Wednesday, 9 a.m. to noon, for drop off only; Thursday - Friday by appointment only to pick up completed returns. Service is limited to simple returns and only to active duty servicemembers and eligible Family Members. Retirees and their eligible Family Members may be included at a later time.
The panel of leaders who attended the Hunter Town Hall Meeting included Lt. Col. Jose Aguilar, Hunter Army Airfield garrison commander, and directorate and tenant service representatives from the installation. They shared information of community interest and addressed issues that were raised.
<b>Editor's note:</b> The Hunter Army Airfield portion of the article was written by Nancy Gould, Hunter Army Airfield Public Affairs.