By Mrs. Erinn Burgess (IMCOM)October 10, 2019
KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany - Housing and barracks work orders, potholes, and extended hours at facilities were among some of the questions raised during a U.S. Army Garrison Rheinland-Pfalz virtual town hall Sept. 25.
The town hall is an opportunity for garrison leaders to answer questions and provide feedback to the community, said Garrison Commander Col. Jason T. Edwards. Edwards provided an initial response to the majority of questions received during the live stream. After the town hall ended, all questions were routed through garrison leaders for in-depth review and response.
A request for an online form for housing and barracks work orders came up during the town hall. Community members expressed concerns that the Directorate of Public Works work reception number goes unanswered. Garrison officials provided an explanation as to why this sometimes occurs.
"DPW does not have a call-waiting system. If our service order clerks are on the phone with a resident and someone else calls, our current phone system does not have the capability to put the caller on hold or into a waiting queue," DPW officials said.
DPW is researching technical solutions to this problem, but at this time residents can also call the main DPW office at 0611-143-541-4000 or send a work order request via email to email@example.com.
Edwards added a reminder that if residents are unable to get through to a DPW clerk, they may call the 24/7 commander's housing hotline at 0611-143-541-3032.
Another area of concern during the town hall was potholes on roads in Baumholder.
Garrison officials said the DPW Roads and Grounds team continuously inspects the roads and parking lots on post. It prioritizes road repairs based on impact to life, health, safety and availability of funds. For fiscal year 2020, DPW will be funding a project to repair Menue Road between the traffic circle and Baumholder Java Café.
"Our goal is to repair roads and parking lots over time with the funds we have available. If you see an area which you deem to be an immediate impact to life, health or safety, please report this area to the DPW work reception desk," DPW officials said.
Another question that arose was the possibility of extending evening hours at facilities in Baumholder, specifically at the library.
Officials from the Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation said changing operational hours at USAG Rheinland-Pfalz libraries is challenging, as the two main customer bases (Soldiers and family members) visit the library at different times.
"Soldiers need the library to complete mission requirements during morning hours, while family members primarily use the library after school hours. Army libraries are funded to open a set number of hours per week, so when we add hours to the evening to accommodate family members it takes hours away from Soldiers using the library in the morning," DFMWR officials explained. "We will review the potential for a library late-night, but we first must analyze the effect of taking more hours away from Soldiers before we commit."
In the meantime, other facilities in Baumholder offering evening hours include the Warrior Zone, Baumholder USO, Strikers Bowling Center and Mountaineer Fitness Center.
The garrison plans to host a physical town hall in Kaiserslautern or Baumholder this fall. More information will be released on the USAG Rheinland-Pfalz Facebook page at www.facebook.com/army.rp.
A full list of town hall questions and responses may be found on the garrison website at https://home.army.mil/rheinland-pfalz.