The Trump administration’s nominee to serve as assistant Army secretary for installations, energy and environment says predictable, adequate, sustained and timely funding is needed to improve Army posts and installations.
A White House government reform plan would transfer 11 Army-run cemeteries—all but one located at now closed forts—to the Department of Veterans Affairs’ National Cemetery Administration in a move aimed at improving efficiency and freeing up Army funds for more critical needs.
High-profile locations like Arlington National Cemetery, the cemeteries at the U.S. Military Academy and the U.S. Soldiers’ and Airmen’s Home, and cemeteries at 18 other Army installations would remain in the Army’s hands, as would Air Force-funded cemeteries at former Army bases.
For advice on everything from online housing referrals to grocery delivery, the Army is enlisting the help of its youngest soldiers to guide decisions on how installation services might be delivered using smart technology.
Energy self-sufficiency remains a goal for U.S. Army installations, Lt. Gen. Gwen Bingham, assistant Army chief of staff for installation management, told a Senate subcommittee.
“We continue to reduce reliance on external utility systems for critical missions, improve energy and water efficiency, enable operational freedom of action and contribute to mission readiness,” Bingham said.
The Army made “significant improvements” in barracks and housing though the “inventory of facilities in poor or failing condition grew from 22 to 25 percent this past year,” Lt. Gen. Gwen Bingham, assistant chief of staff for installation management, told Congress.
Years of threatening to close excess military bases have left most Army communities with a case of outsized anxiety, said Lt. Gen. Kenneth R. Dahl, U.S. Army Installation Management Command commanding general.
“We have sufficiently terrorized every community,” Dahl said March 20 during a Hot Topic event on Army Installation Management hosted by the Association of the U.S. Army’s Institute of Land Warfare. “They require some behavioral health.”
The Army has two big goals for installations, moving to make them self-sufficient for at least 14 days without outside power, water and other utilities, and trying to harness technology to improve efficiency and security and reshape installation services, said Jordan Gillis, acting Army secretary for installations, energy and environment.
Army bases are no longer sanctuaries but are “the first skirmish lines” in future warfare, says a new report from the Association of the U.S. Army’s Institute of Land Warfare.
Called “Modernization for Industrial Age U.S. Army Installations,” the report by Col. Patrick M. Duggan, a career Special Forces officer with cyber experience, argues for rethinking the role and purpose of installations and making certain they are included in the discussion about modernization priorities.
The accelerating rate of technological advancement will drive a fundamental change in how the Army organizes, resources and conducts o
The Army can no longer afford to place readiness before installation management, a senior service official says.
“The reality of today is the Army is taking risks to fund training and unit readiness,” said J. Randall Robinson, the acting assistant secretary of the Army for installations, energy and environment, during the recent Association of the U.S. Army Annual Meeting and Exposition in Washington, D.C.