Town hall meeting gets interactive
November 4, 2010
FORT JACKSON, S.C. -- Members of the Fort Jackson community who did not have a chance to attend Tuesday's installation town hall meeting will not have to wonder what they missed.
A video of the meeting will be available online no later than Nov. 17, said Lewis Kellam, supervisor operations officer with the Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization and Security. In addition, the format of the meeting has been expanded so that community members can e-mail questions in advance.
Col. James Love, garrison commander, said the format changes are part of a continuous effort to improve and expand community forums. The purpose is to provide information about garrison developments to as many people as possible and to garner feedback from the community, Love said.
"As a garrison team, as an installation staff, we have but one voice we listen to, and that's our customer," he said to those in attendance. "It is our job to provide you all with a level of service commensurate with your level of sacrifice to a nation at war."
Traditionally, community members have had the opportunity to raise questions during the meetings, some of which could be answered immediately; others were answered at the following town hall meeting. Although questions are still accepted during the meeting, Kellam said he hopes that more people will get involved by being able to e-mail questions in advance.
"We try to make the process as simple as possible and also use some of the available resources ... to get to as many people as we can," he said. "It is the opportunity for those living on the installation or working on the installation to share with us those things that we don't see, things that affect them that maybe we could provide them a solution to."
Although the main focus of Tuesday's meeting was holiday safety, Love took the opportunity to remind the community about the importance of energy conservation. He said Fort Jackson's electricity bill averages about $1 million each month.
"We have to do a better job as an installation," Love said. "We're going in the wrong way. We're supposed to be saving energy. We're actually consuming more energy than we did last year, and that's a bad trend."
Love urged Fort Jackson employees to be mindful of their energy use and to turn off office lights, monitors, computer speakers and printers at the end of the work day.
"A little effort on your part can save us money," he said. "And that money is something I can then put back into the community and do things like build new roads (or) put it back into other programs that eventually will help Soldiers."
The next town hall meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m., Feb. 1 at the Solomon Center.
To view the video of Tuesday's town hall meeting, visit www.jackson.army.mil, scroll to the bottom of the page and click on the Vimeo link. To send in questions for the next town hall meeting, e-mail JACKSON_townhall_questions@conus.army.mil.
Town hall topics:
-- Holiday safety tips
-- Dealing with stress
-- Housing updates
-- AAFES updates