Department of the Army Historical Summary: FY 1992
The Army provided a variety of support services on posts and in the field. Some helped to sustain the force, while others improved the quality of life for soldiers and their families, thereby raising troop morale. Personal support services included the ministry of Army chaplains, alcohol and drug counseling, and help with weight control. Installations managed libraries, day care centers, and other necessary services, such as commissary and post exchanges, legal assistance, and medical care. For units in the field, support encompassed laundry and food. In addition, the Army also supported initiatives of the Department of Defense, such as casualty and memorial affairs, prisoners-of-war/missing-in-action (POW/MIA) issues, and real property acquisition and disposal.
The Army made a major effort to ensure that soldiers and civilians leaving the service received help in their difficult transition. The Army Career and Alumni Program (ACAP), which became fully operational in November 1991, provided transition assistance and job search training for soldiers and civilians leaving the Army. During FY 1992, the Army changed its policy and allowed separated soldiers, Department of the Army civilians, and their family members to continue using the ACAP for up to sixty days after their separation.
ACAP had numerous components. The Army Employer Network (AEN) listed over 5,000 employers who had expressed interest in hiring Army alumni. In addition, fifty-five Job Assistance Centers assisted almost 128,000 first-time clients during the fiscal year. To provide job assistance to personnel located at a distance from one of its Job Assistance Centers, ACAP used portable automation equipment based at Forts Benjamin Harrison, Indiana; Benning; Carson; Dix; Hood; Ord; and several sites outside the continental United States. On a test basis, a mobile job assistance van from the ACAP at Fort Carson, Colorado, made a total of twenty-one visits nationwideseven to troop stations to assist depart-
ing personnel, and the remainder to cities to advertise their skills to prospective employers. The Defense Outplacement Referral System and the Transition Bulletin Board also came within the scope of ACAS These DOD transition initiatives were automated employment assistance programs through which registered employers could reach soldiers and civilians leaving the Army and members of their families. By using a toll-free number instituted in November 1991, callers could hear about ACAP and its components, locate a Transition Assistance Office or Job Assistance Center near them, and learn about benefits. On 10-14 August 1992, participants from all ACAP sites as well as senior Army military and civilian leaders attended the first annual ACAP Training Conference. Testimonials from the clients of ACAP as well as from the Army chain of command attested to the quality of services ACAP provided to the Total Army family as personnel left the service.
The New Careers in Education (NCE) program, which started in 1990 under the ACAP, helped departing soldiers and other members of the Army family pursue careers as teachers and administrators in the nation's public schools. NCE was intended to help remedy nationwide shortages of qualified math, science, language, special education, and minority teachers. With support from FORSCOM, TRADOC, and the Military District of Washington, the Education Division of PERSCOM had been working with the National Executive Service Corps since September 1988 to establish and evaluate model teacher certification programs for departing Army personnel. While the Education Division handled program policy, Army Education Centers worldwide provided counseling on teacher certification requirements and alternate routes to certification, and the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Training and Education established a toll-free telephone service that provided information on certification in more than thirty states. During FY 1992, the NCE program received almost 9,600 inquiries.
The Army also was involved in efforts to increase the number of Hispanic college students. In 1989, only 16 percent of college-age Hispanics were enrolled in college, and only 3.6 percent of college-age Hispanics were attending four-year higher education institutions. By an executive order in September 1990, President Bush requested Army agencies to advance educational opportunities for Hispanic Americans. In August 1992, the Army responded with GATEWAY (Growth and Advancement Through Education with Army), a career exploration seminar for approximately sixty selected students from the Passaic Community College of Paterson, New Jersey; the Passaic Technical High School in New Jersey; and the Hostos Community College in the Bronx, New York. This pilot program was a partnership between these schools, PERSCOM, and the U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command (CECOM) at
Fort Monmouth, New Jersey. During the two-week seminar, instructors provided academic instruction, on-site projects, and mentoring to first- and second-year students pursuing careers in computer science, engineering, math, and science. The seminar tried to motivate the students to complete the academic requirements for a four-year college degree. PERSCOM, CECOM, and college officials planned to meet in FY 1993 to discuss employment opportunities for these students, and PERSCOM hoped that the Army could sponsor this program on a nationwide basis in the future.
In addition to his traditional duties, the Chief of Chaplains received the mission of training soldiers in suicide awareness and prevention. The Office of the Surgeon General remained the proponent agency for suicide prevention in the Army, but the Army considered the Unit Ministry Teamthe chaplains and chaplain assistants in each TOE unitto be the best means for imparting an understanding of the dynamics of suicidal tendencies and behaviors. Under the guidance of mental health professionals, the Unit Ministry Team in each battalion-size unit provided quarterly classes and training to Army military personnel. To prepare these teams, the Army arranged for the Menninger Clinic in Topeka, Kansas, to instruct over 160 chaplains and their assistants on suicide and crisis counseling skills at an initial training session. This session was so successful that the Office of Chaplains planned for additional ones to train as many of the members of Unit Ministry Teams as possible. In addition, installation chaplains will implement the Family Member Suicide Prevention Program under the guidance of mental health professionals and in conjunction with each installation's suicide prevention program.
Available data on the results were encouraging. By the close of FY 1992, sixty-four active duty soldiers had committed suicide, a reduction of twelve from FY 1991. Even allowing for later adjustments due to changes in the originally reported cause of death, the number of active duty suicides in the 1992 calendar year was 87, compared to 102 for 1991. The ratio of suicides per 100,000 soldiers was 14.5 for 1992, a slight decrease from the 14.6 rate in 1991. By way of comparison, the civilian suicide rate for roughly the same age group (20-34) was 22-25/100,000. Psychological autopsies of soldier suicides did not indicate that downsizing or changes in policy played any role in their motivations. Psychologists still attributed suicides, in large part, to failures in personal relationships, alcohol abuse, and financial difficulties.
Alcohol and Drug Abuse
During FY 1992, the Army tightened its Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Program (ADAPCP). As of 1 October 1991, it
required the mandatory separation of all drug abusers with three or more years of active or reserve duty. The Army also reemphasized that soldiers involved in serious cases of alcohol-related misconduct, such as driving under the influence and repeated intoxication while on duty, would be considered for separation. These developments underlined the Army's policy that drug and alcohol abuse was incompatible with military service.
Advances in the specificity and sensitivity of tests enabled the Army to tighten its testing standards. Through improvements in initial test kits and the gas chromatograph/mass spectrometry confirmation tests, officials could detect drugs at lower levels. Thus, levels at which it was possible to detect marijuana, cocaine, and amphetamines dropped by 50 percent. The confirmation test level for cocaine fell by 33 percent, and the levels for codeine and morphineintegral elements of the test for opiateswere reduced by 85 and 92.5 percent, respectively. During the fiscal year, the Department of Defense certified Northwest Toxicology to test for LSD using new methodology that the civilian firm had developed to detect LSD at lower levels. Reports from the Army Criminal Investigation Command and newspaper articles indicated that the use of LSD had increased, and the Army anticipated that the number of positive tests for LSD would rise with the 50 percent lowering of the confirmation level effective in December 1992. For the moment, however, the lowering of detection levels resulted only in an increase in the number of positive tests for marijuana.
The expansion of drug testing affected Department of the Army civilians as well as soldiers. When DOD lowered cutoff levels for military personnel in January 1992, the Army moved to test soldiers and Department of the Army civilians at different levels, with the Department of Health and Human Services determining testing levels for civilians. Since Northwest Toxicology had already tested civilians in the Army Materiel Command, the Army decided that the firm would be responsible for testing civilians. At this time, the Army tested close to 10,000 civilians per year. With the decision to require testing for positions requiring security clearances, the Army expected an increase to 40,000 in the future.
The Army's drug test requirements exceeded the capabilities of its forensic laboratories. To test the active Army at its current level and to add testing of the Army Reserve and National Guard, the Army renewed a contract with Northwest Toxicology in 1991. The burden on stateside laboratories was increased by the closure of the USAREUR facility in Wiesbaden, Germany, which necessitated the shipment of all test samples destined for that center to laboratories in the continental United States. The stateside laboratories absorbed the USAREUR specimens into their workload by increasing their capacity, but they faced still another problem. Prior to its closure, the Wiesbaden facility had reported results by
electronic message, but the transfer of sample evaluation to the continental United States increased the distance between the collection site and laboratory, a change that figured to increase the time involved in the process. The stateside laboratories continued the practice of reporting results to the USAREUR collection sites by electronic mail, a practice they extended to submitting sites in the continental United States as well. However, the requirement for a paper copy of all positive test results remained in effect.
Since 1988, the U.S. Army Drug and Alcohol Operations Agency has possessed responsibility for operational oversight of the Army's Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Program around the world. The agency has carried out systematic oversight visits and also acted as the contracting officer representative for the Adolescent Substance Abuse Counseling Service. Through the latter program, it educates military children and also identifies and treats adolescent abusers throughout USAREUR, USARPAC, and U.S. Forces Korea (USFK). During FY 1992, 1,281 adolescents were enrolled in the treatment program, the fifth consecutive annual increase.
The challenges posed by downsizing as well as other changes in the Army and the world led the agency to sponsor an Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Program Workshop in Indianapolis, Indiana, on 22-24 September 1992. About 200 program administrators, educators, and biochemical testing coordinators from around the world attended the workshop. The Drug and Alcohol Operations Agency worked with the Center for Substance Abuse Prevention and the Federal Quality Institute to design an agenda that focused on substance abuse prevention and Total Quality Management (TQM). Workshop speakers advocated a "paradigm shift" in which TQM provided the framework for the allocation of resources among rehabilitation and alcohol and drug abuse prevention. During the meeting, DCSPER presented certificates of appreciation to the 1991 Secretary of Defense Military Service Community Drug Awareness award winnerFort Bragg, North Carolinaand the three runners upFort Sill, Oklahoma; Seneca Army Depot, New York; and USARPAC.
In evaluating the Army drug program, investigators from MACOMs, the Army Drug and Alcohol Operations Agency, and the Army Medical Department concluded that personnel had performed in a superb manner. They reported that prevention activities were well coordinated with appropriate agencies and effectively promoted by alcohol and drug abuse control officers and clinical directors. In addition, investigators rated the overall quality of clinical care as excellent. Commanders at all levels believed that the program for adolescents was essential to their support for Army families and to their substance abuse prevention efforts.
Effective 15 November 1991, the Army used the ODCSPER Enhancement of Quality changes to make a number of alterations to its Weight Control Program. Under the new program, Army school personnel would screen all students upon their arrival and deny enrollment to overweight applicants. Another change allowed the unit commander to start separation proceedings if a soldier with no medical problems exceeded the body fat standard within twelve months of leaving the weight control program. The Army also required a commander to bar reenlistment or begin the process of administrative separation for soldiers whose progress in the weight control program was unsatisfactory after six months. Again, the commander would consider medical conditions that might have adversely affected a soldier's progress.
Discipline, Law Enforcement, and Military Justice
On 17 August 1972, the Army Judge Advocates General and the General Counsel of the Department of Transportation formed the Joint Service Committee on Military Justice (JSC) to prepare and evaluate proposed changes and amendments to the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) and the Manual for Courts-Martial (MCM). During FY 1992, the JSC coordinated with the Office of Management and Budget in conducting its sixth annual review of the MCM (Change 6). This review established procedures for investigating complaints of judicial misconduct or unfitness, required the military judge to consider the government's interest before ruling on a defense request for immunity, and issued several other clarifications on procedures and the authority of the magistrate. The JSC also assisted during the fiscal year in the executive coordination of the Seventh Annual Review (Change 7), making significant changes with regard to convening authority and posttrial procedures and increasing the maximum punishments for involuntary manslaughter, negligent homicide, carnal knowledge, forcible sodomy, and sodomy with a child. The JSC also completed a preliminary Eighth Annual Review of the MCM (Change 8) and at the close of the fiscal year was studying public comments.
The 1992 DOD Authorization Act incorporated several JSC-proposed amendments to the UCMJ. These changes closed a "gap" in court-martial jurisdiction for offenses committed by reservists between drills. They also added drunken operation of a vehicle or aircraft to violations under the UCMJ and set a per se blood-alcohol level for drunken driving. Other revisions clarified the scope of depraved-heart murder, removed the spousal exemption for rape, and made rape gender neutral.
During FY 1992, the Office of The Judge Advocate General (OTJAG) completed a draft interim change to Army Regulation 27-10, Military Justice, that made several substantive modifications. These included clear
establishment of the "beyond a reasonable doubt" standard of guilt for nonjudicial punishment proceedings, provision for the review of a military magistrate's release of a soldier from pretrial confinement, enhancement of the Victim/Witness Assistance Program, and incorporation of the program for prosecuting criminal offenses in federal court. OTJAG planned to publish these changes in FY 1993.
The total number of courts-martial decreased by 41 percent from FY 1988 to FY 1992. The Army attributed the decline to the drawdown of the Army's end strength and the common use of administrative separations, especially the Entry Level Separation, which removed at an early stage in their service many soldiers who might otherwise have appeared in the courts-martial statistics. However, the most significant factor in the decline in the number of courts-martial was the Army's continued enforcement of high-quality recruitment standards.
Army Communities of Excellence
Through the Army Communities of Excellence (ACOE), the Army attempted to provide the best possible services and facilities for soldiers, civilians, and their families. At the invitation of installation commanders, the ACOE office staff made on-site visits, assessed their hosts' use of TQM, suggested improvements in facilities, and conducted customer service training workshops. The ACOE also encouraged excellence through awards at the installation, MACOM, and Department of the Army levels.
During FY 1992, Army communities made tremendous improvements in renovating facilities and improving customer service. Over 200 Total Army installations entered the ACOE competition in 1992. From January through March, three ACOE teams from the active Army, Army National Guard, and Army Reserve made site assessment visits to six stateside and six overseas installations for the Chief of Staff's Active Army Award, four sites for the Chief of Staff's Special Category Award, and two stateside and two overseas posts for the Most Improved Award. They also visited five ARNG states and ten USAR centers. During a 21 May award ceremony at the Pentagon, fifty-seven Total Army communities received awards, and Fort Sill received the Commander in Chief Award at a Pentagon ceremony the following day. Of all garrison commanders surveyed in FY 1992, 96 percent agreed that ACOE had made a positive impact on the Army.
Morale, Welfare, and Recreation
The Army expected that the formation of a Board of Directors, which received the preliminary approval of Army leaders in October 1992, would
have a significant impact on the efficiency of Army Morale, Welfare, and Recreation (MWR). An outgrowth of the old Community and Family Program Review Committee, the Board of Directors enhanced the influence of Army CINCs on the process and also pinpointed fiduciary responsibility for congressionally appropriated and soldier-generated dollars. As of the close of the fiscal year, the committee members were refining their draft bylaws in preparation for discussion at the November 1992 meeting of the board. Pending board approval, working groups, subcommittees, and committees will operate according to the draft bylaws.
The Army's MWR program management strategy contained three main elements. The program element maximized benefits to soldiers and families by eliminating nuisance and user fees for category A programs and retaining those basic community support programs most in demand. It also streamlined installation MWR organization and facilitated personnel reductions. The capital financing element improved funding procedures for construction at installations. The Army MWR Fund financed all major construction that used nonappropriated funds (NAF). The corporate resource element sought to bring together appropriated and nonappropriated funds in a way that recognized the government's responsibility for support, prevented uncoordinated drawdowns from appropriated funds, and assured that soldiers paid their fair share. Using these elements, the Department of the Army and the MACOMs created a budget that promoted MWR self-sufficiency, with installations using locally generated income and available appropriated funds to provide programs and to finance minor capital improvements on a cash-flow basis.
The Army led the other services in compliance with the Military Child Care Act of 1989, particularly in funding obligations, staffing levels, inspections, accredited centers, and diversification of child-care services. Army programs sought to keep up with private industry in providing child care as a corporate benefit. Through Army Child Development Services (CDS), the Army met its obligations for appropriated child-care funding at a level that rendered surplus some child development center (CDC) patron fees. In response, the U.S. Army Community and Family Support Center (CFSC) implemented in October 1991 a new DOD standard fee policy based on total family income. The new policy decreased fees for children of junior soldiers in the lowest income category. To help meet the demand for child care, USAREUR instituted a family child care (FCC) subsidy program throughout the command, and other installations started similar programs. The Army hoped these subsidies would lead to more FCC homes and child-care spaces. Department of the Army and MACOM CDS multidisciplinary teams inspected all CDS programs, and the Army accredited forty CDCs by the end of the fiscal year, exceeding the DOD goal. The CFSC also implemented supplemental CDS programs at most installations.
In response to its overseas drawdown, market demand, and a desire to provide a tangible benefit to soldiers at a time of great personnel turmoil, in December 1991 the Army began to investigate the possible establishment of an Armed Forces Recreation Center in Orlando, Florida. During the first quarter of 1992, Louisiana State University faculty conducted a market survey that identified a significant demand for such a center among the 8.3 million eligible DOD patrons in the continental United States. Of these, 3.8 million lived within 900 miles of Orlando, the most popular vacation destination in America. CFSC determined that leasing an existing facility was the most feasible course for the proposed center, due to the minimal risk, the lack of availability of appropriated or nonappropriated funds for capital investment, and the project's great potential for success. The CFSC accordingly placed an ad in the Orlando Sentinel requesting interested hoteliers to contact the Army. The CFSC carefully evaluated the forty replies, conducted some on-site inspections, and selected three finalists. As of the close of the fiscal year, the CFSC had selected a candidate and was preparing to request the Army's approval for a lease in mid-November 1992.
The Army Recreation Machine Program enjoyed its most successful year since its worldwide implementation in 1982. During FY 1992, the program operated over 5,000 machines in Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Panama, Japan, and Korea. The program's machines earned $102 million in FY 1992, returning at least ninety-three cents of every dollar played to the customer in the form of funds for MWR projects. Since 1981, the program has contributed $450 million to MWR.
In 1992, the CFSC implemented the Consolidated Ticket Consignment Program (CTCP) to consolidate DOD ticket purchases for attractions, to reduce nonappropriated funds invested in ticket inventories, and to eliminate the expense of individual procurement of tickets. The new program planned to provide the same services in the eastern United States as the naval base in San Diego gave to western military installations. It charged nonappropriated funds with the vendor net price, adding no markup to installations and saving 15 to 17 percent from the gate price. Most MWR funds added a small markup that left MWR patrons with an average saving of 10 to 12 percent. In its first eight months of operation, the CTCP supported 72 major DOD locations (44 Army MWR Funds and 28 Air Force, Marine Corps, Navy, and Civilian Welfare Nonappropriated Fund Instrumentalities [NAFI]). Through October 1992, CTCP shipped more than 63,000 tickets valued at over $3.5 million, and installations using CTCP saved close to $60,000. Since FY 1992 was the pilot phase of CTCP, the program handled one product lineWalt Disney World in Florida. CTCP expected to add other regional attractions and theme parks in the eastern two-thirds of the continental United States during FY 1993.
Commissary and Subsistence Operations
On 1 October 1991, the Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) assumed full control of all commissary systems in the Department of Defense. Headquartered at Fort Lee, Virginia, the agency operated over 370 commissaries, 111 troop issue stores, and 13 central distribution centers employing 22,000 people worldwide. The DeCA established seven regional centers headquartered at Fort Meade, Maryland; Little Creek Amphibious Base, Virginia; Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama; Kelly Air Force Base, Texas; the Marine Corps Air Station in El Toro, Santa Ana, California; Fort Lewis, Washington; and Kapaun Air Station, Germany. It supplemented regions supervising widely dispersed commissaries with eleven district offices. Two service centersat Fort Lee and Kelly Air Force Baseprovided contracting, bill-paying, and accounting services. During the fiscal year, DeCA closed twenty-three commissaries under BRAC, slightly reducing total sales. The commissary at Fort Belvoir, Virginia, remained the top commissary, posting total sales of $78,171,000.
Army/Air Force Exchange Service
In January 1992, the Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) reported sales of $7.5 billion, earnings of $297 million, and contributions of $224.5 million to MWR in FY 1991. The Army received $136.4 million of these funds, with the balance going to the Air Force. The following January, AAFES reported FY 1992 sales of $7.3 billion, earnings of $301 million, and $213.5 million provided to MWR. The Army received $130.5 million of the MWR money, and the Air Force $82.9 million.
During the fiscal year, the AAFES reorganized. In April, AAFES realigned its organization in the continental United States from four regions and fourteen sales districts to nine sales regions, eliminating a level of management. In February, the headquarters of AAFES-Europe returned to Pinder Barracks in Nuernberg, Germany, after twenty-three years at the McGraw Kaserne in Munich. In July, the AAFES consolidated the former AAFES-Pacific headquarters in Honolulu, Hawaii, with sales districts in Korea, Japan, Guam, and Thailand to form the new Pacific Rim Region Operations Center on Okinawa, Japan.
AAFES responded rapidly to natural disasters during the fiscal year. When Hurricane Andrew leveled Homestead Air Force Base, Florida, AAFES deployed mobile food and retail units to provide food service, barbershops, beauty salons, a service station, military clothing, laundry, dry cleaning, and exchange merchandise. In addition, AAFES supplied 280,000 pounds of ice, thousands of dollars worth of clothing, and tire service at no charge to hurricane victims. AAFES also brought in mobile retail trailers and food units to help the almost 4,000 troops assisting in the cleanup of Kauai, Hawaii, after Hurricane Iniki. After Hurricane Val hit
American Samoa in December 1991, the acting store manager remained in the local store for five days providing exchange services to the hard-hit customers. AAFES also supplied food, drinks, haircuts, and basic necessities to the forward-deployed troops in Turkey and Iraq during Operation PROVIDE COMFORT.
National Capital Region Lodging-Success Program
Implemented in January 1992, the National Capital Region (NCR) Lodging-Success Program located quality lodging with easy access to transportation, simplified the process of obtaining lodging near temporary duty stations, and reduced travel costs. The Army estimated annual savings in lodging and rental car costs as a result of the program would be over $2 million. These reductions in travel costs made funds available to installation commanders for higher priority requirements.
During FY 1992, the Army developed a water reuse kit to reduce by half the 6,000 gallons of water required daily by the M85 Laundry Trailer Mounted (LTM). The new kit collected rinse water into a holding tank equipped with a heat exchanger and reused the water in the next wash cycle. At the end of the fiscal year, the Army had installed kits on five M85 LTMs, and seventy-five other LTMs were in the process of reequipping. All 484 M85 LTMs will eventually receive water reuse kits.
The Army also was developing the Laundry and Decontamination Drycleaning System (LADDS), a nonaqueous supplement to the M85 LTM. Planners expected LADDS, a regenerating solvent system, to eliminate the logistical burden of providing wash water on the battlefield. By the end of FY 1992, LADDS had completed Technical Test I at Aberdeen and Yuma Proving Grounds, and changes had increased the system's capacity from 160 to 400 pounds per hour.
In June 1992, the Chief of Staff of the Army approved a new Army Field Feeding System policy to distribute and prepare one A/B ration meal every day, rather than every third day. The Quartermaster School had developed a concept under which two cooks with sufficient equipment to provide a limited number of A/B rations were placed in divisional line companies. The proposal raised a mechanized infantry battalion's authorizations for cooks from seventeen to twenty, with ten in the companies and the remainder in the battalion headquarters. It also replaced or upgraded existing kitchen equipment with such state-of-the-art items as
the Kitchen, Company Level Field Feeding, and it containerized kitchens and sanitation centers at battalion level and above. The concept also called for altering the rations to reduce preparation time and to simplify distribution. A food service warrant officer would serve in each major subordinate command of a division to provide peacetime training and to coordinate the wartime mission. The Chief of Staff directed the XVIII Airborne Corps to field test the concept during FY 1993, with Army-wide fielding scheduled for FY 1995.
Health and Medical Care
Years of rapidly escalating health care costs throughout DOD, the continuing restructuring and downsizing of the military establishment after Operation DESERT SHIELD/DESERT STORM, and the end of the Cold War and mounting congressional pressure led to significant changes in the existing Military Health Services System (MHSS) during FY 1992. In particular, the continuing growth and cost increases in the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Uniformed Services (CHAMPUS) since the late 1980s had prompted Congress and the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs (ASD [HA]) to authorize a number of health care demonstration projects in the services' military treatment facilities (MTF). These projects were designed to help determine the best way to apply civilian-style managed care approaches to DOD medical programs. As the ASD (HA) developed the new Coordinated Care Program (CCP) for managed health care in DOD, the Army had introduced its own Gateway to Care program in FY 1991 as a demonstration project of an alternate health care delivery system.
Gateway to Care and the Coordinated Care Program
The Gateway to Care (GTC) program was the Army's primary experiment with alternative health care delivery systems. For GTC, the Army drew heavily on the lessons learned since FY 1988 in two congressionally mandated Catchment Area Management (CAM) Demonstration Projects at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and Fort Carson, Colorado. At these two posts, MTF commanders had full authority, responsibility, and resources to provide health care to all eligible beneficiaries in the designated catchment area. In addition, the GTC was shaped by DOD's CHAMPUS Reform Initiative (CRI), information from a number of other ongoing Army-initiated projects in its Medical Enhancement Program, and initiatives developed at the Office of The Surgeon General and Headquarters, Health Services Command. The program based its foundation on seven elements that were closely linked to civilian health care delivery and business practices: enrollment of eligibles, utilization management, outcomes
study and management, primary care managers, local design and implementation, specialized treatment facilities and regions of excellence, and marketing and education for the beneficiaries. But the real key to GTC was that it returned responsibility for comprehensive health care planning and delivery to the local MTF commander. During FY 1992, the GTC program expanded to eleven more sites in the continental United States: Forts Benning; Bliss; Bragg; Campbell; Drum, New York; Gordon, Georgia; Hood; Leavenworth; Riley; and Leonard Wood, Missouri; and the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York. The Army estimated a cost savings of over $5 million during the year, and it planned to phase all of the remaining MTFs in the continental United States into the program in FY 1993.
While the Army continued to work on its growing Gateway to Care initiative, the ASD (HA) unveiled its Coordinated Care Program, which would fundamentally restructure the manner in which the MHSS and Army health care delivery system functioned. In contrast to the GTC program, which focused more on increased authority and responsibility for the local MTF commander, CCP leaned more heavily on contractors to provide decisions and health care. Combining elements of the CAM and CRI projects, the CCP featured beneficiary enrollment, changes in beneficiary cost share, creation of local networks of military and civilian providers and specialized treatment facilities, merger of direct and CHAMPUS operation and maintenance funds, and local accountability with centralized oversight. The Army would develop comprehensive local health care networks by combining the MTF and CHAMPUS programs under each MTF commander. Geographic regions, each under a service lead agent, would manage the CCP at a higher level. ASD (HA) proposed phasing in the new program over a three-year period beginning in FY 1992. In April 1992, the Surgeon General submitted the Army's proposed implementation plan for the Coordinated Care Program to ASD (HA). Developed in close coordination with Health Services Command, the Army proposed to implement the new CCP at its eleven existing GTC MTFs and the two CAM facilities during FY 1992 and adding the remaining sixteen MTFs in FY 1993.
Tidewater Tri-Service Managed Care Project
In the National Defense Authorization Act of 5 December 1991, Congress directed the further development and implementation of a tri-service health care delivery program based on the CRI in the overlapping service catchment areas of the Tidewater region of Virginia. Originally developed by the Navy Surgeon General and approved by ASD (HA) in 1991, the Tidewater Tri-Service Managed Health Care Project, or TRICARE-Tidewater, would be the first tri-service, locally
managed CCP project and a prototype for the entire program. The U.S. Army's McDonald Army Community Hospital at Fort Eustis, Virginia, would participate, along with Navy and Air Force MTFs and a network of individual and institutional civilian health care providers under the overall direction of the Naval Hospital, Portsmouth, as the lead agent for ASD (HA). The project would provide three health care delivery options to over 400,000 beneficiariesa preferred provider organization (PPO), a health maintenance organization (HMO), and the standard CHAMPUS coverage. Its objectives were to improve access to care, emphasize quality outcomes and improvement, control health care costs, and use managed care concepts to monitor and control patient usage patterns. The PPO was to begin operation on 1 October 1992 and the HMO option on 1 April 1993. In addition, ASD (HA) selected TRICARE-Tidewater as the "alpha site" for testing the Composite Health Care System Coordinated Care Program (CHCS-CCP) information management system that DOD planned to install in all MTFs. CHCS was critical to the long-run success of ASD (HA)'s plans for the centralized control and decentralized execution of the Defense Health Program and the Coordinated Care Program.
Section 733 Study
Capping a rather busy year of change for the Surgeon General was major involvement in another congressionally directed study of military medical care. In Section 733 of the National Defense Authorization Act of December 1991, Congress directed the Department of Defense to submit a final "Comprehensive Study of the Military Medical Care System" by 15 December 1993 with an intermediate report due on 15 December 1992. The overall study was under the ASD (Program Analysis and Evaluation) and called for the extensive involvement of the Department of the Army and the Surgeon General. Four functional work groups assembled in February 1992 and worked the rest of the year to develop the supporting studies on the major areas of congressional concern that would contribute to the interim report.
Health Services Command
The workload for Health Services Command during FY 1992 reflected the predominantly overseas drawdown and the increase in the number of retirees and their dependents in the continental United States. Thus, even though the Army reduced its active duty end strength by 100,000, the population supported by the command remained relatively constant. Worldwide, average daily admissions to Army hospitals declined 2.7 percent, outpatient visits declined 1.1 percent, and births increased 10.0 percent, largely due to the modest "baby boom" follow-
ing Operation DESERT STORM. In the United States, admissions and visits remained close to their FY 1991 levels, and births increased 10 percent. The largest workload reduction occurred in Europe, as admissions and visits fell 18 and 15 percent, respectively, although births increased 14.3 percent. In Korea, births fell nearly 17 percent, and admissions and visits declined by 6 and 5 percent, respectively. In Japan, clinic visits decreased by 8 percent.
During FY 1992, Army Medical Department personnel continued the vital role they had played in providing preventive medicine and supporting public health during Operations DESERT SHIELD and DESERT STORM. The Preventive and Military Medicine Consultant Division of the Surgeon General's Office investigated postwar medical issues such as leishmaniasis, exposure to smoke from Kuwaiti oil well fires and depleted uranium munitions, medical defense against chemical and biological agents, and clusters of unexplained medical symptoms in several reserve component units.
As for the fight against AIDS, education and behavioral change remained the key strategies in the Army community for preventing transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). At the end of FY 1992, the Preventive and Military Medicine Consultant Division was developing a revised Army HIV Education Plan. As a result of civilian reports in the news media, the risk of HIV transmission from HIV-infected health care workers to patients became a high profile issue. The division thoroughly investigated the case of an HIV-infected Army dentist, and the Army conducted a large-scale effort in testing and counseling as a result. None of the 1,631 former patients that the Army tested was HIV positive.
The Army continued its efforts to integrate the Army Medical Department's environmental health program with the Army's overall environmental program. The environmental health staff of the Preventive Medicine Consultant's Division represented the Office of The Surgeon General (OTSG) in senior staff actions to reorganize the Army's environmental structure and to develop an overall Army environmental strategy. One of these actions streamlined the Health Hazard Assessment reporting process. The change allowed MACOMs to send requests for assessments directly to the U.S. Army Environmental Hygiene Agency (USAEHA), instead of through the OTSG, resulting in a faster response.
The Army's presence in Southwest Asia continued to present environmental health challenges for Army medical personnel. Malaria, leishma-
niasis, filth flies, and other entomological problems affected troops deployed to the Persian Gulf in the aftermath of Operations DESERT SHIELD and DESERT STORM. Preventive medicine personnel responded with guidance on repellents, fly reduction, and vector control. In 1992, the Army Medical Department gained approval for factory impregnation of desert battle dress uniforms with permethrin, a repellant that gives passive protection against biting insects and other arthropods for the combat life of the uniform. The division also initiated the establishment of the DOD Lyme Disease Center at USAEHA and coordinated with the Veterans Administration to establish a program for the periodic evaluation of soldiers wounded by depleted uranium fragments during Operation DESERT STORM.
Industrial Hygiene and Occupational Health
During FY 1992, the Army's Industrial Hygiene and Occupational Medicine consultants developed biotechnological ways of alleviating cumulative injuries that cost the Army several million dollars each year. In the area of noise hazards, the staff in the OTSG integrated time-weighted averages of noise exposure into the Army Medical Department's hearing conservation program. This step will improve the measurement of personal exposures to excessive noise, allow quick remediation of the worst noise hazards, and direct tests of hearing acuity for overexposed workers.
Army health professionals worked throughout the fiscal year on safety and occupational health standards for the Army. The TQM partnership of Health Services Command and Army Materiel Command (AMC) developed installation occupational health programs for the AMC. The success of this partnership pointed the way to similar arrangements with other MACOMs. The Surgeon General's Office also was working on the development of a new Army regulation11OSHthat defined safety and occupational health operations and responsibilities on installations.
The Army Medical Department also continued its work on blood programs. The Department of Defense, supported by each service's medical department, spearheaded a new congressionally mandated blood lead screening program to identify and treat children with high blood lead levels. This program also included environmental remediation where lead-based paint in government housing caused the problem. The OTSG also distributed the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Bloodborne Pathogen Standard to Army medical facilities worldwide. The standard required the development of plans to reduce bloodborne exposure to HIV and Hepatitis B viruses, and it increased the availability of the Hepatitis B vaccine to health care workers.
Casualty and Memorial Affairs
In March 1991, the Deputy Secretary of Defense designated the Secretary of the Army as the DOD executive agent for mortuary affairs. During the fiscal year, the Secretary of the Army assigned this responsibility to the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs (ASA [MRA]). The Assistant Secretary formed a DOD Mortuary Affairs Program Working Group that consisted of representatives from all of the services, the Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff. This working group studied all aspects of mortuary affairs, including its relations to casualty assistance and medical operations. The group also reviewed three mass fatality incidents and three major contingency operations. In its report, it recommended the establishment of a DOD Casualty and Mortuary Affairs Agency to consolidate the services' casualty, POW/MIA, and mortuary affairs programs. In July 1992, the working group presented its report to the ASA (MRA), who at the end of FY 1992 was preparing to send it to the services for comment.
Prior to Operations DESERT SHIELD and DESERT STORM, the Army had developed no detailed procedures for the handling of chemically and biologically contaminated human remains. During the fiscal year, the Deputy Chief of Staff for Logistics chaired a multiservice group of experts to find ways to decontaminate human remains so that they could be safely returned to their next of kin for final disposition. The ASA (MRA) approved the group's proposals for further testing and evaluation and the development of joint doctrine. At year's end, the Army was drafting procedures for inclusion in joint Field Manual 10-63, Handling of Deceased Personnel in a Theater of Operations.
During FY 1992, efforts to locate and identify remains from past wars continued. With regard to World War II, the Central Identification Laboratory identified the remains of a Marine private killed on Guadalcanal and an Army private who disappeared in combat in the Netherlands. With regard to Vietnam, the laboratory identified nine individual remains from Southeast Asia as five members of the U.S. Air Force, two members of the U.S. Army, a German civilian, and a French civilian. The pathologists also determined that a group of remains were two members of the U.S. Army.
The Department of the Army's Casualty Operations Center maintained the official Army casualty database. Reported soldier deaths totaled 744 for the fiscal year, a decrease from 1,219including deaths in the Gulf Warin FY 1991. Among dependents of soldiers stationed overseas, 188 died in FY 1992, compared to 262 for FY 1991. Soldiers reported as Very Seriously Ill/Injured and Seriously Ill/Injured in overseas areas totaled 133 for FY 1992, a decrease from the previous year's 507, which
included casualties of Operations DESERT SHIELD and DESERT STORM. Reported retiree deaths totaled 9,926 in FY 1992, a slight decrease from the 9,931 deaths reported in FY 1991.
During FY 1992, the Office of The Judge Advocate General (OTJAG) revised Army Regulation 27-3, The Army Legal Assistance Program. The new regulation incorporated suggestions from legal offices and lessons learned from Operation DESERT STORM. It provided for increased employment of Army Reserve and Army National Guard judge advocates and gave guidance to soldiers regarding such issues as Group Life Insurance beneficiary selection, veteran reemployment rights, and wills.
Based upon recommendations from the OTJAG, the Army and Air Force Exchange Service updated its contract with H&R Block to protect soldiers and their families. Judge advocate personnel had revealed H&R Block's failure to comply fully with the Truth in Lending and Fair Credit and Billings Acts. The new contract specifically stated how H&R Block would comply with these federal laws.
Task Force RUSSIA
During the fiscal year, the national media reported numerous allegations that American servicemen were detained by the Soviets during World War II and the Cold War. After officials of the former Soviet Union confirmed that American prisoners had been held in Russia, the two nations formed the United States-Russian Joint Commission on POW/MIAs, which convened its first meeting in March 1992. The commission was supposed to collect and analyze information from Russian archives and citizens on missing American servicemen who may have been detained in the Soviet Union during World War II, the Korean War, the Cold War, and the Vietnam War. It would also investigate all reports alleging the presence of POWs/MIAs in the former Soviet Union, assist in facilitating repatriation if desired, and establish procedures to return any American remains to the United States.
In May 1992, the Deputy Secretary of Defense designated the Secretary of the Army as the executive agent to assist the American delegation to the Joint Commission. At the direction of the Secretary, the ASA (MRA) ordered the Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel (DCSPER) to form a task force. The DCSPER established a five-person cell from the Total Army Personnel Command (PERSCOM) to lay the groundwork for the formation of the task force and also to serve as liaison with the three-
person cell in Moscow serving as representatives of the American delegation. On 29 June, Lt. Col. Lawrence J. Gomez, Chief of the Mortuary Affairs and Casualty Support Division, became the deputy director of the task force, named Task Force Russia.
As approved by the Department of Defense, the task force consisted of thirty-nine military personnel and civilians from the Army, Navy, and Air Force, commanded by a major general. Ten members, including a historian, an archivist, an interpreter, field interviewers, and administrative support personnel, staffed the Moscow office. The rest, including the director and deputy director, filled the various cellstask force headquarters, translation, analysis and production, collection management, database support, and administrative supportof the Washington office.
The new task force submitted its initial report to the United States delegation on 17 July 1992 and followed with additional reports every two weeks. By early September, twenty-three personnel had arrived, including seven in the Moscow office. Another twelve arrived by mid-October. The Moscow office gathered documents from Russian archives and sent these, along with interviews, to the Washington office for translation and analysis. Analysts in Washington extracted the names of servicemen, along with dates and circumstances of incidents, from the source material and compared them with information from U.S. archives to resolve cases of missing Americans.
As of the end of the fiscal year, the evidence produced by the investigation was inconclusive. Early in June, the new Senate Select Committee on POW/MIA Affairs announced the receipt of a document from the commission indicating that 125 American servicemen listed as dead or missing may have been interrogated in North Korea by the Soviets. On 30 June, President Bush told reporters at a White House press conference that the commission had not found any evidence of living American POWs/MIAs in Russia, and Malcolm Toon, American cochairman of the commission, added that commission members were hampered in obtaining Soviet intelligence and military documents.
Other POW/MIA Activities
The twenty-third National League of Families annual meeting on 23-25 July 1992 in Crystal City, Virginia, was the first time that Army medics drew blood samples from POW/MIA family members to assist in the future identification of remains. The Army coordinated government-sponsored travel to the meeting for two family members from each participating Army POW/MIA family. At the meeting, the Casualty and Memorial Affairs Operations Center (CMAOC), in coordination with the Armed Services Institute of Pathology, drew blood from selected family
members to establish a mitochondrial DNA sample file for comparisons with samples from remains then in custody or from remains received in the future. This meeting also launched a DNA outreach program that would allow those family members not in attendance to donate samples for future comparison.
During the fiscal year, the North Koreans showed a greater willingness to cooperate on the sensitive issue of recovery and identification of remains. Under the terms of the Korean Armistice Agreement of July 1953, the two sides from the Korean War had agreed to exchange remains, a process called Operation GLORY. GLORY dissolved in 1954, having exchanged few remains, but it revived with the end of the Cold War. In May 1992, North Korea repatriated remains of thirty American servicemen. These, along with five remains returned in May 1990 and eleven in June 1991, brought the total received since the termination of Operation GLORY in 1954 to forty-six. Currently, close to 6,300 Army servicemen remain "unaccounted for" out of a total of 8,177 for all the services from the Korean War. In June 1992, the J-5 of the Joint Staff hosted a meeting of representatives from the Department of State, the Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the United Nations Command Military Armistice Commission (UNCMAC), the OSD (POW/MIA), and the CMAOC to discuss a draft proposal from the Korean People's Army (KPA) and the UNCMAC's prospective counterproposal for search and recovery operations for unrecovered remains. The attendees agreed that the UNCMAC should consider the KPA proposal as a sign of increased cooperation and that the UNCMAC should reach an agreement on this issue. Based upon the recommendations of the meeting, the UNCMAC will revise its counterproposal.
Also during the fiscal year, the U.S. Army Central Identification Laboratory in Hawaii began developing a database of Korean War fatalities to aid in the identification of both recently returned remains and those that the Army may recover in the future. The database also will help to identify possible locations of remains and aid in their recovery.
Construction, Facilities, and Real Property
Fiscal year 1992 was a challenging one for the military construction (MILCON) program. During fiscal years 1987 through 1989, Army construction programs used only 86 percent of programmed dollars due to delays from high costs, user changes, site problems, and obstacles in negotiations. Starting in FY 1990, the announcement of BRAC and planned force reductions led the Corps of Engineers to place many projects on hold pending stationing decisions. Following a brief moratorium on all
construction awards, in April 1991 OSD allowed some projects as long as they passed special approval procedures. These procedures, which remained in effect throughout FY 1992, included prior approval for the projects by either the Secretary of Defense or the Under Secretary of the Army. Despite these restrictions, during the budget process Congress continually added projects that had no completed design. During FY 1992, 12 percent of the Military Construction, Army (MCA), program and 20 percent of the Army Family Housing (AFH) program were congressional additions.
The MCA and AFH construction programs during the fiscal year still fell well short of the programmed dollar totals. The FY 1992 MCA program contained 107 projects with a combined dollar value of $660.7 million available for construction. As of 30 September 1992, the Army had awarded forty-eight projects costing $384.6 million, or 58 percent of the programmed dollars. The Army canceled two projects with a total value of $10.2 million during the fiscal year. The AFH construction program contained twenty-seven projects programmed at $162 million. As of 30 September 1992, the Army had awarded nine projects at $60.8 million, or 38 percent of the programmed dollars, and canceled none.
The U.S. Army Health Facility Planning Agency (USAHFPA)the Surgeon General's program manager for health facility planning, programming, design, and constructiondeveloped the Army Medical Department's capital investment plan for medical facilities, including funds for the replacement of substandard buildings or for temporary safety upgrades and alterations. The Surgeon General wanted to replace hospitals every twenty-five years, but historically the Army has not had adequate funds to support this replacement cycle. For the period from FY 1994 through 1999, the USAHFPA program included twenty-one new Army projects valued at $216.85 million in addition to forty-five projects already in design or ongoing construction worth $1.27 billion. During FY 1992, Congress authorized $390 million for the construction of a new 400-bed Fitzsimons Army Medical Center in Denver, Colorado, and $148 million for a new Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Washington, D.C. The Army also awarded construction contracts for the new Brooke Army Medical Center/Institute of Surgical Research, Fort Sam Houston, Texas, and the new Womack Army Medical Center, Fort Bragg, North Carolina; completed construction at Madigan Army Medical Center, Fort Lewis, Washington; and continued work on the Reynolds Army Community Hospital at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and Patch Barracks Health/Dental Clinic, Stuttgart-Vaihingen, Germany. It also made numerous other additions to medical facilities around the world.
As a result of the Secretary of Defense's consolidation of the service medical programs under the Assistant Secretary of Defense, Health
Affairs (ASD [HA]), as a unified medical budget, the USAHFPA became the program manager for the Army Medical Department's Real Property Maintenance account. USAHFPA expected the account's annual budget to approach $295 million but did not anticipate full funding. The consolidation moved construction funding for medical training and medical research facilities from the services to the ASD (HA) and made USAHFPA the program manager.
In line with its DOD responsibilities, the Army also performed construction for the other services. The Military Construction Air Force (MCAF) program for FY 1992 contained 143 projects worth $831 million. As of 30 September 1992, the Army had awarded fifty-nine projects valued at $422.2 million, or 51 percent of the programmed dollars. The Military Construction Air Force Reserve (MAFR) program for FY 1992 comprised six projects budgeted at $10 million. The Army awarded five of these projects worth $9.5 million. Special management controls, to last through 30 September 1993, required either the Deputy Secretary of Defense or the Secretary of the Air Force to approve each project before the Army could award it. For its part, the Army did not award many projects for the usual reasons: site problems, user change, and contractor's work estimate/procurement appropriations problems.
Facilities and Real Property
During FY 1992, the Army was committed to providing excellent facilities for its soldiers, families, and civilians. Through such initiatives as the Whole Barracks Renewal and the Whole Neighborhood Revitalization Programs, the Army sought to fund essential facilities, to reduce inventory, and to supply sufficient resources for revitalization, construction, and maintenance. The Army leadership considered these goals essential to the readiness of the force, to the quality of life for soldiers and their families, and to the avoidance of long-term costs for facility replacement or environmental compliance.
Since FY 1980, the Corps of Engineers has enjoyed almost total control of the Recruiting Facilities Program. During FY 1992, the Army Recruiting Command planned 732 new offices, relocations, expansions, and upgrades. That same year, the Corps of Engineers scheduled 735 projects and completed 649. It also used savings to complete an additional 164 projects in the annual Recruiting Facilities Reduction Program (RFRP), which involved office closures, relocations, and reductions in place. Finally, the corps exceeded its goal of 95 percent completion of the funded FY 1992 Recruiting Facilities Program.
The Army renewed its emphasis on installation master planning during the fiscal year because of the impact of downsizing on its organization and installations. The Corps of Engineers rewrote AR 210-20, Master
Planning for Army Installations, to establish a new component for this responsibility, the Capital Investment Strategy (CIS). Resources, not time, constrained the strategy, which provided a picture of the investment needed to revitalize Army installations to meet future Army needs. The Real Property Planning and Analysis System (RPLANS) also aided planning, particularly in the case of BRAC, by comparing installation capabilities to possible stationing actions. The Army fielded RPLANS to forty-two installations during the fiscal year and began work on expanding the system's capabilities with a space utilization model.
Substandard barracks were an increasing concern in all of the services. In June 1992, after a tri-service committee pointed out the need for changes in barracks design standardization, an Army subcommittee adopted a new set of guidelines for barracks renovations and new construction. These new guidelines barred administration, command and control facilities, and dining facilities from the barracks; provided that all rooms have separate baths, temperature controls, and wiring for cables and telephones; stipulated that barracks have enough parking to service 70 percent of the building's maximum utilization; and directed the separate establishment of a "core area" for a combination of living room, barracks manager's office, laundry area, and mail area. At the request of the Corps of Engineers and the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Installations and Housing (DASD [I&H]), the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Installations and the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (Comptroller) approved the standards in July. Anticipating approval of the new standards, the Corps of Engineers had already issued revised design directives for all FY 1994 barracks projects.
The Whole Barracks Renewal (WBR) program represented the Army's long-term commitment to improve the living conditions of single soldiers through the construction and modernization of barracks in the continental United States. Too many of these soldiers lived in thirty- to forty-year-old facilities that not only required major overhaul but also were designed for the austere standards of a conscript army. The WBR program demanded a fifteen-year investment of approximately $4 to 5 billion to bring the Army's barracks up to standard. It provided for the renovation of 158,500 existing barracks spaces and the construction of 9,000 new ones. At the close of the fiscal year, however, funding reductions for fiscal years 1993-95 had adversely affected the planned schedule.
Launched in FY 1992, the Whole Neighborhood Revitalization Program sought the systematic upgrade, repair, or replacement of Army family housing to new construction standards. The program was supposed to renovate family quarters on a 35-year cycle while reducing recurring maintenance, energy consumption, and inconvenience to occupants. The Army found that eliminating the backlog of revitalization projects would
cost $4.31 billion as of FY 1992. However, funding reductions in the FY 1993 budget delayed the planned schedule.
In addition to the BRAC process, during FY 1992 the Army initiated the Facilities Reduction Program to decrease the number of buildings on all U.S. installations. The program had three objectives: improved utilization of permanent facilities, consolidation into the best buildings, and disposal of the worst structures. It sought to demolish 33.8 million square feet of the worst facilities from FY 1992 to FY 1996 and established targets for all MACOMs. For most new construction, the program called for the disposal of an equal square footage of temporary buildings, although MACOMs could "cross-level" this requirement among different installations. During FY 1992, the Army invested $35 million as demolition began to meet annual reduction targets. In nearly all cases, the facilities destroyed were World War II "temporary" buildings.
After years of meager funds for Real Property Maintenance Activities (RPMA) accounts, the Army's infrastructure had deteriorated and environmental compliance requirements had increased. The FY 1993 budget estimated the backlog of maintenance and repair at $3.8 billion, an increase of 37 percent over FY 1992. The Army expected the major increases to lie in unaccompanied personnel housing, maintenance shops, and utility systems, many of which the corps envisioned as potentially expensive environmental compliance projects. The Army concentrated its efforts to control the maintenance and repair backlog in the continental United States, a reflection on the Army's significant reductions in overseas bases.
With less money for facilities maintenance in prospect, the Corps of Engineers improved the utilization of facilities. The Office of the Assistant Chief of Engineers published AR 405-70, Utilization of Real Property, to provide guidance on space authorizations and utilization. The corps established a new career program for real property personnel in the space management field and started composition of a Department of the Army pamphlet as a "how-to" guide. The corps demonstrated its receptiveness to new forms of facility utilization with the June signing by the Detroit District Commander of the first lease under the Stewart B. McKinney Homeless Assistance Act. Under the three-year lease, Damiano of Duluth, Inc., rented the former yardmaster's dwelling at Duluth Vessel Yard in Duluth, Minnesota, for emergency family housing. The signing of the lease culminated a fifteen-month effort of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the COE's Detroit District to provide a shelter for the homeless.
In addition to leasing property for the homeless, the Real Estate Directorate of the Corps of Engineers found other ways to help the less fortunate. One of the directorate's more unusual activities was support for
the response and recovery efforts in the aftermath of Hurricanes Andrew and Iniki. In Florida, Corps of Engineers real estate personnel obtained rights-of-entry and leases in Miami for debris removal and burn sites. In Hawaii, they leased hundreds of units of temporary housing for hurricane victims. Corps personnel managed to make these acquisitions quickly due to extensive liaison with the property owners, state and local officials, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). They planned to use the resulting lessons learned as the foundation for updating and streamlining the directorate's disaster response procedures.
Following a congressional mandate, Engineer district offices prepared contracts for the private management and disposal of properties acquired under the Homeowners Assistance Program (HAP). A special relief program authorized by Congress, the HAP partially compensated eligible military and federal civilian employee homeowners serving at or near military installations for losses caused by a drop in real estate values when their bases received orders to close or reduce operations. In some cases, the government actually purchased the employee's dwelling. The authorization act for FY 1993 established a demonstration project to determine whether a national contractor, local contractors, or the Corps of Engineers on a national level should administer disposal of the properties.
During the fiscal year, the Army attempted to maintain an acceptable level of support services to soldiers, their dependents and installations, and other agencies. In many instances, the Army succeeded in its efforts to fulfill its obligations. But in many cases, the Army faced delays due to fiscal uncertainty and budget cuts. In addition, downsizing actions prevented the Army leadership from adequately fulfilling many of its support responsibilities, especially in the areas of construction, maintenance, facilities, and real property. Only time and additional funds would provide the kind of support services that soldiers had come to expect from their Army.
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