Effective Jan. 1, 2009, the Pine Bluff Arsenal is the new marshalling site for all U.S. General Services Administration vehicles utilized in the state of Arkansas.

"This is a service that comes up for bid every year. We had been asked in the past by GSA to become a site because they liked our security," said Deborah Eifling, director of Logistics. "We also had quite a bit of room for the vehicles. So, when they asked us about it, we were interested in it."

Eifling said the partnership is really a win-win. "They were excited about us having a secured facility and by the quality of work that our guys do," she said.

Fleet Manager Kerry Wright from the GSA Central Fleet Program, Federal Acquisition Service in Oklahoma City, Okla., said that GSA was excited about working with PBA. "We are confident this new agreement will benefit both GSA and the Arsenal," he said.

According to their website, GSA is an independent agency of the United States government, established in 1949 to help manage and support the basic functioning of federal agencies. The GSA supplies products and communications for U.S. government offices, provides transportation and office space to federal employees, and develops government-wide cost-minimizing policies, among other management tasks.

As the GSA marshal, the Arsenal will receive the vehicles, do an initial inspection of them, and contact the federal customer who is getting the vehicle for pickup. "The customer would then come here and turn in their old vehicle and pick up the new one," said Eifling. "We will then do an inspection of the old vehicle, and then GSA will tell us where to send it for public auction. If anything is wrong with the vehicles, we will make the necessary repairs and be reimbursed for our costs."

Partnership agreements such as this help reduce operating expenses, said Larry Wright, Arsenal civilian executive assistant. "GSA has confidence in our capability. They've seen our vehicle management operations, and were impressed," he said. "This new venture will allow beneficial use of available capacity on the Arsenal."