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25 jan07courier

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25 jan07courier

  1. 1. 1/24/2007 13:16 Page 1 PG 1 COLOR Home of the Atlantic Fleet Seabees Gulfport, Mississippi Vol. 44 No. 2 PG 24 COLOR January 25, 2007 inside this edition NCBC Gulfport's Environmental and Public Safety Departments are coordinating with the Mississippi State Forestry Commission to conduct a series of controlled burns designed to clear combustible brush and undergrowth from the wooded areas onboard the Center. See page 10 BU1 (SCW) Michael Cadoret of Naval Mobile Construction Battalion One Thirty Three credits his crew and expresses his thanks to the veterans at the VA Medical Center in Biloxi during the ribbon cutting ceremony for the fishing pier recently built by NMCB 133. See page 11 http://cbcgulfport.navy.mil Photo by MC2 Gregory N. Juday EO2 Kevin Rapier from Austin, Texas of Naval Mobile Construction Battalion Seventy Four helps maneuver the pipe for proper fitting at Out Post Viking on Jan. 2. NMCB 74 is currently deployed to Ramadi, Iraq and other locations throughout South West Asia in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. See story on page 9 24 CB PG 01-24 COLOR January 25, 2007 Military and civilians came together to celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., at the annual commemorative service held at the Seabee Memorial Chapel Jan. 16. Pastor Othell Adkins of Bible Way Baptist Church in Gulfport spoke at the service. See page 2 Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  2. 2. Page 2 PG 2 B&W CLEAN NCBC/20SRG Commanding Officer Capt. Van Dobson Executive Officer Cmdr. Bill Finn Public Affairs Officer Jean Remley Editor Bonnie L. McGerr Mass Comm. Specialist MC1 Sean Mulligan 22ND NCR Commander Capt. Eric Odderstol Public Affairs Officer Lt. Cmdr. Kyra Hawn NMCB ONE Commanding Officer Cmdr. Dean A. Tufts Public Affairs Officer Lt. Kris Portacci Mass. Comm. Specialists MC2 Chad Runge MC3 Ja'lon Rhinehart NMCB SEVEN Commanding Officer Cmdr. David J. Sasek Public Affairs Officer Ensign Russell Becker Mass Comm. Specialists MCC Jeffrey J. Pierce MC3 Paul D. Williams NMCB SEVENTY FOUR Commanding Officer Cmdr. Craig S. Prather Public Affairs Officer Lt. Edsil L. Logan Mass Comm. Specialist MC2 Gregory N. Juday NMCB ONE THIRTY THREE January 25, 2007 Commanding Officer Cmdr. Allan Stratman Public Affairs Officer Lt.j.g. Amy Yoon Mass Comm. Specialist MC3 Jessica A. McIver 2 NCTC Gulfport Commanding Officer Cmdr. Darius Banaji Public Affairs Officer BU1(SCW) James LePage The Seabee Courier is an authorized publication for members of the military services and their families. Its contents do not necessarily reflect the official views of the U.S. Government, the DoD or the U.S. Navy and do not imply endorsement thereof. The appearance of advertising in this newspaper, including inserts or supplements, does not constitute endorsement by the U. S. Government, DoD, the Navy, NCBC Gulfport or Gulf Publishing Company of the products and services advertised. All content in this newspaper shall be made available for purchase, use or patronage without regard to race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, marital status, physical handicap, political affiliation or any other non-merit factor of the purchaser, user or patron. If a violation or rejection of this equal opportunity policy by an advertiser is confirmed, the publisher shall refuse to print advertising from that source until the violation is corrected. The Seabee Courier is published 22 weeks a year by Gulf Publishing Company, a private firm in no way connected with the DoD , under an exclusive contract with the U. S. Navy. The Seabee Courier solicits news contributions from military and civilian sources, but the Public Affairs staff reserves the right to edit and/or rewrite material selected for publication to conform with journalism standards. The deadline for material is close of business Wednesday the week prior to publication. Your comments are always welcome. The Seabee Courier office is in Building 60, Room 250. The mailing address is 4902 Marvin Shields Blvd., Code 15, Gulfport, MS 39501. Phone: 228 871-3662, Fax: 228 871-2389. Email: seabeecourier@navy.mil. Photo by MC1 Sean Mulligan BU2 Charles Sergeant from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion One delivered the Litany of Commemoration at this year's Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemoration Service held at the Seabee Memorial Chapel January 16. Pastor Othell Adkins of Bible Way Baptist Church in Gulfport was the featured guest speaker. Refreshments were served in the Fellowship Hall at the conclusion of the service. A monument to honor Dr. King is being built on the national mall in Washington, D.C. and is expected to be completed next year. CBC Photo Lab Closed Jan. 29 - Feb. 9 Due to training requirements the CBC Photo Lab in building 60 will be closed Jan 29 - Feb. 9. Battalion photographers may use the studio by making arrangements with the Public Affairs Office at X2699/3662. Office of MCPON hits 40 year mark By MCCS(SW/AW) Bill Houlihan MCPON Public Affairs At a retirement ceremony Jan. 12, one day prior to the fortieth anniversary of the inception of the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy, MCPON (SW/FMF) Joe R. Campa Jr. reminded chief petty officers here what he expects of them as deckplate leaders. Addressing a number of area chiefs at the retirement ceremony of Master Chief Electronics Technician (SW) Mickey Manes, Campa recalled the chief petty officers who led and trained he and Manes as they grew up in the Navy, and said he envisions a return to their traditional type of leadership. "Those chiefs were cut from a cloth of leadership that I want to blanket the Navy with today," said Campa. "They had something I like to refer to as 'CPO presence.' When they walked into a space the tone of the entire space changed. They were uncompromising leaders." Campa said that when Del Black was appointed the first MCPON in 1967, his goals were similar to those of Campa's forty years later. "MCPON Black was a true chief. He knew the value of communication, of listening to his Sailors, and the Command Action Line From BRIDGES page 11 we could do for the Seabees," said Gunnery Sergeant Vernon Getter, Fox Company, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marines. "These guys are doing From PSD page 7 absolute need for our community to take on the role of standard bearers, to enforce those standards amongst ourselves as well as up and down the chain of command," he added. The eleventh master chief to hold the position, MCPON Campa said that the nine men who followed Black each entered the office with one goal in mind; the development of the enlisted force as Sailors and people. "Each of us has had our own style and way of doing things, but there has been a constant theme for 40 years from Del Black to Tom Crow to John Hagan to me: providing Sailors the best opportunity to succeed," he said. Campa echoed that in his remarks at Manes' retirement ceremony. He said that as a Sailor's character strengthens, so too will his commitment to the Navy. Campa and Manes served together on USS Frank Cable (AS 40) from 2003 to 2005. available latter in the day. DFAS Customer Service support is also available for assistance for any W2 or MyPay questions at 1800-390-2348, Monday through Friday between the hours of 0700 – 1930 Eastern Standard Time. Special Leave Accrual (SLA) calculation OPNAVINST 1050.3 established guidelines for Navy members to qualify for SLA up to 120 days. Commands must follow the guidelines published in this instruction when determining SLA entitlement. Special leave accrual is not a unique kind of leave. The only significant differ- great work out here in Iraq; I truly believe they are playing a large role in the War on Terrorism". "It was great having the Marines out there providing security," said Equipment Operator 2nd Class Kevin Rapier, project Crew Leader, of Austin, Texas. "It allowed us to focus on our job instead of worrying about keeping our guys safe". After three long days of work in the cold weather, the Seabees completed the culvert project ahead of ence is that members subject to special leave accrual are entitled to accrue and carry forward leave in excess of the normal limit of 60 days into a new fiscal year. Leave in excess of 60 days is treated as ordinary leave for purposes of leave usage, but is protected until used. A member's leave usage is charged against the entire current leave balance on his or her account at the time leave is taken. If the member's leave usage reduces the leave balance below the special leave accrual balance, then the member has used some of the leave accrued in excess of 60 days. If the member's leave usage reduces the leave balance to 60 days, then the member is considered to have received the full benefit of the special leave accrual and is no longer subject to the provision. In accordance with Department of Defense Financial Management Regulations paragraph 350102c, the charging of leave is based on the last leave earned is the first leave used (LIFO) method. Service members using leave early in the fiscal year are more likely to see hold leave balances charged. This is because they may have not earned enough leave to prevent a leave period from reducing their current leave balance below the maximum set at the end of the last period of special leave accrual. schedule and above expectations. "They did an outstanding job," said GySgt. Getter, "it was better than anything we could have asked for". The Fearless Seabees of NMCB 74 continually live up to their "Can Do" motto with the successful completions of a multitude of projects at Out Posts and Iraqi Police Stations throughout Iraq while deployed to Ramadi in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Example of Special Leave Accrual (SLA) As of 30 Sept. 06 member's leave balance was 75.5 of which 15.5 days is SLA. Leave balance before 1 Oct. 06: 75.5 days Leave earned 1 Oct. 06 - 31 Dec. 06: 7.5 days Leave used 15 Dec. 06 - 31 Dec 06: 17 days Leave balance as of 31 DEC 06: 66 days This member has used some of the leave in excess of 60 days brought forward from the previous fiscal year (FY06). The new maximum number of days that could be carried forward in FY 07 is 66 days, assuming no additional periods of qualifying special leave accrual. Any further leave accrued in excess of 66 days in FY 07 and not used by 30 Sep 07 would be lost. For more information on this topic see OPNAV instruction 1050.3 or call PSD at 871-3283. Ad Space Because of limited IG resources throughout the Southeast Region, all Fraud, Waste and Abuse hotline work will now be handled by the Region. To report Fraud, Waste and Abuse, contact the Region at: Toll Free 1-877-657-9851 Comm: (904) 542-4979 DSN 942-4979 FAX: (904) 542-5587 E-mail: CNRSE_HOTLINE@navy.mil 23 CB PG 02-23 “We EXIST to enable Warfighter Readiness” CBC celebrates life of Martin Luther King, Jr. PG 23 B&W January 25, 2007 13:16 Seabee Courier 1/24/2007 Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  3. 3. 1/24/2007 13:17 Page 3 3 COLOR CLEAN 22 COLORClassified An update of the Katrina Recapitalization Chart. conceptual drawing of the new $41.5 million Operational Expeditionary Logistics Facility to be built by BE&K Construction Company. Groundbreaking on the new facility is expected to begin in April, with a completion date of February, 2009. Above: Left: A maintenance, and breakout/deployment of equipment, materials and supplies in support of NCF operations. Existing facilities are obsolete, damaged, and geographically dispersed, rendering the current containerization mission highly inefficient. Ultimately, this project will consolidate three facilities and include 343,500 SF of demolition for a net square footage reduction of 151,000 SF. Located along the north Keesler Medical to hold Town Hall Meeting The 81st Medical Group will conduct a town hall meeting on Thursday, January 24 for all those eligible to use Keesler Medical Center. Brig. Gen. (Dr.) James Dougherty, 81st MDG commander, will host the program which will be held from 5-6 p.m. in the Welch Theater on base. Among the topics to be discussed will be the medical center's current and future capabilities and services. A question and answer session will be included. Contact (228) 376-3018 for further information. edge of the base and adjacent to the new OELF, the Commercial Vehicle Gate and Truck Access Zone will significantly improve force-protection and traffic flow to the base. ROICC Gulfport and BE&K hosted a Post Award Kickoff meeting last week in Gulfport, MS. Ground breaking is scheduled early April 2007 and construction will be complete by February 2009. The president of BE&K's Government Group is Rear Adm. (Ret) Dave Nash, former "King Bee" and Chief of the U.S. Navy Civil Engineer Corps. The NAVFAC Southeast and OICC Katrina project team involved in construction management and oversight includes: Carl Sellers, Project Manager; Gene Baker, Public Works Engineer in Charge; Russ Dail, Construction Manager; Lt. Hely S. Gonzalez, Construction Manager; Bobby Wayne, Engineering Technician; and Bennie Boren, Contract Specialist. Seabee Ball Tickets Are Available! Prices: March 17 E1 - E4: $15 Imperial Palace E5 - E6: $20 E7 - 03: $30 04 & Above: $35 Civilians: $35 Contact your your command rep for tickets & prepare to party! 22 CB PG 03-22 COLOR 3 The largest stand-alone facility in NCBC Gulfport's recapitalization program, a state-of-the-art Operational Expeditionary Logistics Facility (OELF), was awarded last month to BE&K Construction Company. In addition to the OELF, the $41.5 million design-build construction contract includes a Commercial Vehicle Gate and Truck Access Zone, a Public Works Shops facili- ty, and a Consolidated Public Works Complex renovation. The OELF is required to support Naval Construction Forces (NCF) shipment of containerized warfighting equipment. One of CBC's primary missions is packing Table of Allowance (TOA) material for NCF units. TOA's must be task-tailored for a specific mission and deployed on short notice. The mission includes temporary storage, containerization, preservation, Seabee Courier January 25, 2007 By Lt. Cmdr. R. Tibbetts ROICC Gulfport January 25, 2007 Preparations underway for new Operational Expeditionary Logistics Facility Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  4. 4. 1/24/2007 13:17 Page 4 PG 4 B&W No Higher than 4” across 5 columns 21 B&WChurch Page NMCB 7 Seabees represent the Navy in Outreach Program SW1 (SCW) Lyndon Romeo and Airmen. Romeo and Everson spent the first week of January in Washington D.C. where they received basic training in speech preparation and media engagement skills at the Pentagon. Each was also given audio-visual support equipment to assist them during their speaking engagements. According to Romeo and Everson, the training went really well. They spent most of their time in D.C. developing their speeches and readying themselves for the weeks ahead. Despite feeling prepared, they both felt a little anxious about what they are about to do. "I'm excited about representing the Navy. It's going to be a great experience being able to tell my story about where I've been and what I've done," Everson said. "Even though I know what I'm going to talk about and I'm comfortable with that, I'm still a little nervous. I know what to expect, but not all the particulars." "I was a bit surprised when I was chosen to do this, but I'm really happy about it," Romeo said. "During our training we Defense Department telecommunications system or device constitutes consent to monitoring. Ad Space 4 21 CB PG 04-21 Rain date for 3rd Annual Seabee Classic Golf Tournament at Windance is Friday, Jan. 26. EA2 (SCW) Andrew Everson got the chance to practice our speeches in front of the representatives from the other services. That went well, but I'm still pretty nervous." Everson's first speaking engagement was with representatives from Florida's Federal Highway Administration in Tallahassee, Fla., on January 9. From there he traveled back to D.C. where he stayed for a few days before he was off to another speaking engagement with a veterans group in Clearwater, Fla. For Romeo, he spoke to personnel at the Fleet Industrial Supply Center in Philadelphia, PA. From there, he also headed back to D.C. for a few days before he traveled to Alabama to speak with members of the National Guard. Any organization may request a speaker for its event. Once a request is received, it is evaluated based on relevant DoD policy in order to determine the appropriate level of support. To request a speaker for your event go to: www.whyweserve.dod.mil. January 25, 2007 January 25, 2007 Two Seabees from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion SEVEN (NMCB 7) were chosen to be the Navy's representatives for a Department of Defense speakers outreach initiative entitled "Why We Serve." SW1(SCW) Lyndon Romeo from Brooklyn, N.Y., and EA2(SCW) Andrew Everson from Ocala, Fla., will spend the next three months temporarily assigned to the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs (OASD(PA)). While with OASD(PA) they will travel around the country sharing their personal military experiences with the American people at events organized by academic institutions, community organizations, business associations, veterans groups, and other nonprofit or non-partisan organizations. In preparation for the "Why We Serve" program, each of the four military services was asked to select and screen potential candidates between the grades of E-5 and O-4. In addition, each member must have recently returned from Iraq, Afghanistan or the Horn of Africa; and each member must be a representative of their respective service's contribution to the fight. From all the potential candidates, each service was to whittle their selections down to two representatives and an alternate. Originally, Romeo and another Sailor were chosen to be the Navy's representatives with Everson slated as the alternate. As events would have it, the second Sailor could not commit to the three-month engagement so Everson was given the opportunity. According to OASD(PA) the "Why We Serve" program was designed to connect Americans directly with service members and create an environment where they can share their experiences free of third-party interpretation and filters. This allows service members to present a personal perspective as can only be seen through the eyes of Sailors, Soldiers, Marines Seabee Courier By MCC Jeffrey J. Pierce NMCB 7 Public Affairs Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  5. 5. Page 6 PG 6 B&W CLEAN By MC3 J.A. McIver NMCB 133 Public Affairs January 25, 2007 The Seabees at Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) One Thirty Three received commendation certificates mid-month for volunteering to restore American Legion's Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 2539. The old post was damaged by Hurricane Katrina in the fall of 2005. The project took 80 Seabees and 184 mandays to complete. Members of One Thirty Three stripped and replaced the roof on the post's main shed, built shelves, helped out with the electrical work and circuitry, and painted over 10,000 square feet of wall and trim after pressure washing the area. Charles Purchner, Vice Commander at Post 2539, extended thanks on behalf of the post, to Project Supervisor EA1 (SCW) Peter Sydow and his crew. "They really did a great job, and we appreciate Photo by MC3 J.A. McIver The members at VFW Post 2539 served the members of NMCB 133 dinner at the commendation ceremony, where 80 Seabees received certificates for restoring the post. it," said Purchner. "We hope that someday we can pay them back." Sydow returned the same respect for all that the post does for the Seabees at Construction Battalion Center (CBC) Gulfport. "The post has donated a lot to us," said Sydow, indicating gifts the post has given to the battalions at CBC Gulfport from phone cards to a pool table. "It felt good to help them out, after they've helped us so much. It actually felt like we were paying them back." The camaraderie between active duty and veterans is apparent at VFW 2539. Several Seabees that participated in the project joined the post as members. Ivan Bangs, Commander at Post 2539 recognizes the unique bond between presentday servicemembers and veterans. "Everyone has done something," said Bangs. "We've all contributed." Public Private Venture (PPV) Provided by CNRSE Public Affairs As part of an ongoing effort to ensure Navy Family Housing residents are kept up to date on the conversion of military housing to a Public Private Venture sometime in fiscal year 2007, town hall meetings were recently held in order to communicate with residents on their questions and concerns. This is the first in a series of articles in which Frequently Asked Questions from the residents during these meetings will be published. Q1 Why are we doing PPV in the first place? A1 A shrinking housing 5 budget coupled with aging housing units and maintenance backlog make it difficult for the Navy to provide quality housing for our service members. The public private venture partnership will make it possible for the Navy to renovate and construct family housing quickly and affordably. Q2 Will there be effective oversight by the government of this PPV program? A2 Yes, the Navy as well as the Office of the Secretary of Defense for Installation and Environment support appropriate oversight. This oversight will be applied by the Department of Navy Representative and the Navy's Business Agreement Manager as well as the Navy's on-site Housing Staff. On-site Navy Housing Staff will work daily with the Partner's Staff and the Department of the Navy Representative who will meet with the Partner on an as required basis but at least quarterly to review operations. They will also receive monthly status reports that will address occupancy issues, the project's financial status, etc. Q3 What impact will privatization have on individual installations? A3 Ideally, privatization will bring about a dramatic improvement of the installations' housing conditions and services for military members and their families, and consequently, an increase in their quality of life, readiness, morale and retention. One major improvement is the quality and quantity of maintenance on the housing units. However, some inconveniences may occur throughout the transition period during which some housing will be either renovated or constructed. Q4 When will PPV start? A4 Scheduled implementation date is 30 SEP 2007, some transition may occur 30 days prior to the 30 Sep date. Q5 What will happen to excess Family Housing (FH) units? A5 Will be determined during exclusive negotiations between the Navy and the Partner. Q6 Can residents live in their assigned unit if it is scheduled for closing? A6 Will be determined durSee PPV page 16 Send free Valentine's Day messages to your sweetheart Reprinted from Stars and Stripes Stars and Stripes, the daily newspaper of the U.S. military, is hosting a free Valentine's Day message posting service online. The greetings will be published in the European, Pacific and Middle East editions of Stars and Stripes and on Stripes.com Feb. 14 and possibly also on Feb. 13, depending on the number of messages received. Stars and Stripes recognizes the strain that deployments and frequent separations can put on a marriage and wants to give spouses and family members a way to remember each other on this special day. "Being separated from loved ones is one of the constants in the lives of our readers," said Meg Irish, marketing director. "Anything we can do to bridge that gap, Stars and Stripes will gladly undertake." To send a free message, readers may go to Stripes.com and click on the Valentine's Day messages button, any time until Jan 30. Stars and Stripes will publish only messages written in English which are received online by the Jan. 30 deadline. Every effort will be made to print all the messages received for the Middle East, European and Pacific recipients, but Stars and Stripes also reserves the right to limit the number of messages actually published based on the space available. Stars and Stripes delivers independent news and information daily to the U.S. military community worldwide. Editorially independent of interference from outside its editorial chain of command, it provides commercially available U.S. and worldwide news. From PPV page 6 ing exclusive negotiations between the Navy and the Partner. Q7 How much housing is DoD planning to privatize? A7 DoD currently has an inventory of 166,000 family housing units-with about 50,000 inadequate units. Its current plans are to privatize roughly 185,000 family housing units. However, there is no ceiling set on the number of units expected to be built or reconditioned under the MHPI (source: http://www.acq.osd.mil/ housing/faqs.htm#10) Q8 How is privatized housing similar to military housing? A8 A few of the similarities are: 1. Zero out of pocket expenses for residents; rent is based on BAH 2. You will continue to live in a military community 3. Government pays for the cost of moves into PPV units for eligible service members 4. You will continue to go to the Navy's Housing Welcome Center for housing in the community referral. 5. The Navy Housing Welcome Center will receive your application for PPV housing and will refer you to the Property Management Company Q9 How is privatized housing different from military housing? A9 Units are managed and operated by a private property management company. 1. You must sign a lease. The lease will include a "military clause". 2. You will receive BAH and pay rent directly to the property manager 3. The property management company handles all resident matters, including day to day maintenance Q10 Is the Navy reviewing lessons learned from existing PPV projects? A10 Yes, Navy is looking at all existing PPV deals, to include those from other DoD services to ascertain the best aspects of the projects and is incorporating those lessons in future deals Q11 What is the Resident Advisory Board and who is on it? A11 The Resident Advisory Board will be created to support the Partner and the Department of Navy (DON) on matters that affect resident satisfaction and quality of life. It will review resident satisfaction surveys, property manager performance, and construction process and quality. The Resident Advisory Board will report its findings to the management board and make recommendations on resident issues to the partner and DON members. Recommended DON participants include the activity business manager, Command Master Chief or Sergeant Major, activity housing representative, elected residents, and the Resident Officer in Charge of Construction (ROICC) office. Q12 How does the PPV program impact families where the non-military member does not work? A12 PPV has no adverse impact on working spouses. It has no affect on your ability to utilize programs such as Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), Head Start and other income qualifying assistance programs. Q13 Why is my benefit of living in Navy/Govt housing being taken away? A13 There is no loss of benefit. You still have the opportunity to reside in housing and for an amount equal to your BAH. The only difference is that in lieu of forfeiting your BAH (to pay for your housing and utilities), you now will receive it, and then pay that amount to the partner in the form of rent, utilities, and basic renter's insurance. The DON is embracing the PPV initiative in order to provide high quality, affordable housing and provide enhanced property maintenance faster than would be available under the normal military construction. Q14 Will accompanied active duty always have priority? A14 Yes. Q15 Can active duty displace those with a lower priority? A15 We expect those other than accompanied families to have no more than a 6 months lease If there are accompanied active duty families on a waiting list, the Partner will not renew the existing lease for a lower priority resident. Q16 Will there be a screening process for civilians authorized to live on base? A16 Yes. Specifics will be negotiated between the Navy and the Partner. Q17 Will civilians approved to live on base be monitored at the gates? A17 Yes, to the same extent as anyone else having access to the base. Q18 What will the new rules (community policies) be? A18 The new property manager (at the resident meetings) will discuss community policies. Generally, they will be the same as the existing Navy policies. Q19 If the General Public moves into FH, will they have access to other base facilities. A19 No. Q20 Will the fence line be moved? A20 Will be determined during exclusive negotiations between the Navy and the Partner, but in most cases, this has not occurred. Q21 How does DON plan Keesler's Medical Center Entrance Closed for Renovation Keesler Medical Center's A Tower entrance, at the top of the elevated driveway, will be closed for renovation starting Jan. 20. It is scheduled to reopen the end of March. The outpatient clinic entrance by the Pharmacy and Family Practice Clinic will still be available for patients and staff to use. The renovation is part of a project to place outpatient records and the state-of-the art PRK surgery clinic in this area to ensure they, and other high-value items will be safe from future storm-related flooding. to address episodes of financial irresponsibility that may occur by occupants of PPV Housing? A21 Currently, the Navy Housing Office provides counseling on this issue. The Navy very much encourages residents of PPV Housing to utilize Electronic Funds Transfer for payment of rent and level payment plans for payment of Utilities. The Navy is looking at all avenues for education on financial responsibility, for example Command Master Chiefs & Family Service Center counselors. Alternately financial irresponsibility will be the responsibility of the PPV partner. Q22 What recourse will military families occupying PPV Housing have if the property manager is irresponsive to service needs? A23 If the local property manager is unresponsive then the resident will be able to contact a corporate Regional representative. Also, personnel at the Housing Welcome Center, including its military liaison, will continue to be available to occupants of PPV Housing. Q24 What about privatizing barracks, and DoD lodging? A24 DoD is currently testing privatization of barracks in Norfolk and San Diego and would like to privatize additional barracks and lodging where and when it is feasible. Ad Space 19 CB PG 06-19 133 partners with local VFW Post 2539 PG 19 B&W 2 Col. Cln January 25, 2007 13:17 Seabee Courier 1/24/2007 Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  6. 6. 1/24/2007 13:18 Page 7 PG 7 B&W CLEAN PG 18 B&W 5X11.5 News & Notes from PSD Promise to Serve For Seabee Courier delivery, contact Naval Construction Battalion Center Public Affairs at: (228) 871-3662 or send email to seabeecourier.navy.mil Provided by PSC Reginald Pierce 2007 BAH RATES Military Pay Advisory 76/06 states initial W2 statements for tax year 2006 will be available electronically via MyPay, 22 January 2007 for view and print. Service members also have the option on MyPay to view and print W2 and corrected W2-C statements up to four prior years. W2/W2-C view and print option will be available via MyPay Internet site at https://mypay.dfas.mil. Do not be alarmed if after selecting the W2 option you receive one of the following screen messages; "The file is not currently available. Please try again later" or "Your pay system in not responding. Please try again later", the W2 server is taken off line periodically for routine maintenance and will be See PSD page 17 The family of SW2 Chris McLean, a Seabee attached to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion One, waited with open arms as the battalion returned home from their six-month deployment to the far East. NMCB 1 reunites with friends, families Story & photos by MC2 Demetrius Kennon NMCB 1 Public Affairs Before it's time for a Seabee to deploy, many preparations must be made. Of course, there are all the medical screenings, extensive training, and record updates. Not to mention packing, organizing finances, and arranging storage for personal items. But that's not even the half of it for Seabees with families. Once a deployment begins, Seabees have to leave their families behind. But all their hard work and dedication before and during deployment pays off when they return home. Naval Mobile Construction Battalion One (NMCB 1) returned home to Naval Construction Battalion Center (NCBC) Gulfport, Miss., in December 2006, to a poignant homecoming. "I was very emotional when I came off the plane," said Lt. Cmdr. Chad Brooks, the Operations Officer for NMCB 1. "I was very excited but in the same part, I felt a little bit guilty because I could see how much the kids had changed and knew that I'd been away for a lot of that time when they had seen and learned new things." After the initial euphoria of seeing family, the reality of becoming a family again sets in and it's a really challenging time, said Brooks. Brooks has a 4-year-old son and a 2-year-old daughter. "My wife told me they had a good deployment," he said. "The kids handled it well, and I think they understood that I was gone for a very long time and for a good cause." NMCB 1 was deployed for six months to 20 locations across the globe including sites in Japan, Korea, Iraq, Pohnpei and California, said Brooks. Though the Seabees kept extremely busy in the field, they still missed spending time with their families. "That time is lost," said Brooks. "The things the kids learned and experienced during that time has come and gone." "Make sure if you have young kids, you actually talk to them about deployment, so that it doesn't come to them as a surprise," he added. "No matter how you slice it, being deployed is tough in terms of maintaining a relationship with your family," Brooks said. "We did lots of emails and lots of letters." One of the most important things for Seabees who will be leaving their families is having a means to communicate with their loved ones. Seabees should have some agreement with their families as to how they're going to communicate, whether it's email, phone calls, or Web cam, said Brooks. This prevents false expectations for the amount of communication that will be available. "If your family expects to hear from you every week and for some reason you can't, they may begin to worry about you unnecessarily or feel that you're not paying attention to them," Brooks said. "It's a lifestyle you never get used to," said Utilitiesman 1st Class Adrian Gonzalez, the Leading Petty Officer for Detail Iwakuni in NMCB 1. "You just learn how to deal with it." Gonzalez has a son, 17, and a daughter, 14, and speaks very highly of them both. Gonzalez describes his reunion with them after deployment simply as "fantastic." Gonzalez's pride was almost overwhelming when he talked about his son. With a stern look in his eye he said, "I'm not saying this just because he's my son, but he's probably the smartest kid I have ever encountered." The life of a deployed Seabee can be just as hard as the lives of the family back home, so the key is mutual support from both ends. "The sacrifices I make for my kids might be challenging, but for them it's well worth it in the end," said Gonzalez. Observe parking signs onboard NCBC; violators will be ticketed! Ad Space 18 CB PG 07-18 W2 INFORMATION FOR TAX YEAR 2006 Naval Mobile Construction Battalion One Seabees returned home from six months in 20 locations around the world to their families. The families waited patiently at the hangar doors of the Trent Lott Air National Guard Airport in Gulfport. January 25, 2007 January 25, 2007 6 A refresher on Force Protection Condition definitions is provided by CBC Security Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) is based on geographic duty location, pay grade, and dependency status. The intent of BAH is to provide uniformed service members with permanent duty within the 50 United States accurate and equitable housing compensation based on housing costs in local civilian housing markets, and is payable when government quarters are not provided. A uniformed service member stationed overseas, including U.S. protectorates, who is not furnished government housing, is eligible for Overseas Housing Allowance (OHA). Sailors can look up their 2007 BAH rates on the following Internet site: https://secureapp2.hqda.p entagon.mil/perdiem/bah .html Seabee Courier Photo by MC3 Ja'lon Rhinehart EQCM (SCW) Jeffrey Robinson, Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) One's Alfa Company Master Chief, is reenlisted by Marine Corps Capt. Jake Urban for three years. Master Chief Robinson has faithfully served the Seabee's for over 26 years, and looks forward to the next three, which he will spend attached to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion Seven. Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  7. 7. Page 9 PG16 B&W Clean PG 9 B&W Seabee Community Notes Chaplains define their mission within the NCF SESA The Senior Enlisted Spouses Association (SESA) is for spouses of E7-E9. All branches of the military are welcome. For additional information, contact SESA at sesacbc@yahoo.com. NMCB 1 FSG We would like to invite all friends and family of NMCB 1 Seabees to join us on the first Thursday of every month at 6:30 p.m. at the CBC Chapel in Fellowship Hall. Bring the kids, babysitting is available and free. The NMCB 1 FSG offers fun activities including movies, picnics, bonfires, holiday parties and lots more for the whole family. During homeport and during the deployment we are available to help support all of our NMCB 1 families and friends. If you have any questions please call the FSG president, Briana McAllister at (228) 868-8767 or email her at donzgoddess@yahoo.com. We hope to see you there. NMCB 1 FSG also has a new Photo by MC1 Sean Mulligan The Navy's Chief of Chaplains, RADM Robert Burt visited CBC Gulfport for a Chaplains Conference January 9. While onboard, the Admiral took the time to speak with Seabees from NMCB 133 about deployments and the role Navy Chaplains play in a deployed unit. website that will keep you up to date on what is happening within our military family. The new website is: http://hub.cinchouse.com/nmcb1seabees. NMCB 133 FSG We would like to invite all friends and family members of NMCB 133 to join us on the first Wednesday of every month at 6:00 p.m. in the base chapel. We also do many activities such as holiday parties, fun trips, movie outings and more. During homeport we share in each others excitement and during deployments we lean on each other for support. We offer battalion information and welcome those with children, those without, wives, husbands and other loved ones. NMCB 7 FSG Come join our growing family. We are here to promote and grow social relationships and encourage interaction of spouses and family members during often trying and difficult times during the deployment of our NMCB 7 men and women. We have lots of fundraisers and activities planned for the whole family. There are games and crafts for the kids and speakers on different topics for the adults. We will also have drawdowns for door prizes and refreshments each month. We meet the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. with a potluck dinner at the start. Come and get together with us and meet your fellow family members. For more information on NMCB 7's FSG, contact Kathleen Whisenhunt, FSG president at kwhisenhunt@gmail.com. You can also check out nmcb7fsg@cinchouse.com and http://hub.cinchouse.com/nmcb7fsg/for more information. NMCB 74 FSG The NMCB 74 Family Support Group welcomes friends and families of NMCB 74 personnel. We encourage and promote friendly and sympathetic relationships among our family members. We have a new Careline number for battalion updates, it is 1866-531-1101 (toll free), or 8713650 (local). Family Support Group meetings are held every third Monday of the month at the CBC Chapel in Fellowship Hall at 6:30 p.m. Free baby-sitting and activities for the children are provided. For information contact FSG President, Helen Walker at (228) 586-0114; or Secretary, Robyn Baca at (228) 539-9059. The FSG Advisor is Susan Prather, (228) 392-5945. NCTC TRI-SERVICE FSG We invite all spouses and loved ones of NCTC to join us on the fourth Monday of each month at 6:30pm in the Fellowship Hall of CBC Chapel. We are offering fun activities for the family, girls night out, and fellowship among the NCTC Command. For more information, please contact our FSG President Tessa Grimes @ 865-4364 or email her at tgrimes730@hotmail.com. Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society The Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society (NMCRS) Thrift Shop is located at the far north end of McKinney Ave, Building 16. The Thrift Shop is staffed entirely by volunteers. The retail hours of operation are Monday Thursday, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. and Friday, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. New volunteers are always welcome. Visit the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society offices at the Fleet and family Support Center, Building 30, Suite 103, or call (228) 871-2610 to obtain information about becoming a part of the NMCRS volunteer team! Childcare and mileage are reimbursed. Mississippi Gulf Coast First Class Association MGCFCA is seeking new members. Meetings are every Weds at 2 p.m at CBC's Beehive, Bldg. 352. Call BU1 Reyes or CE1 Johnson at 871-2145 for more information. Community Calendar Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday 23 24 25 Anti-terrorism Force Protection Qrtrly Mtg., Bldg 1, Conf. Rm., 1:30 p.m. All Khaki Social, A&E, 3 p.m. 26 CMDCM Melvin 27 29 30 Seabee Ball Committee Mtg., Bldg. 1 Conf. Rm., 1:30 p.m. 31 Lunchtime Bible Study, Bldg. 1, Conf. Rm., 11:30 - 12:30 Grand Opening Pine Bayou Snackbar, 11:30 1 February 2 3 All Khaki Social, A&E, 3 p.m. 6 Seabee Ball Committee Mtg., Bldg. 1 Conf. Rm., 1:30 p.m. 7 Lunchtime Bible Study, Bldg. 1, Conf. Rm., 11:30 - 12:30 8 All Khaki Social, A&E, 3 p.m. 13 Seabee Ball 14 Valentine's Day 15 4 11 5 12 Lincoln's Birthday 18 19 Washington's 25 26 Val. Day 5K Run, 6:30 Committee Mtg., All Khaki Social, Lunchtime Bible Study, Bldg. 1 Bldg. 1, Conf. Rm., A&E, 3 p.m. Conf. Rm., 11:30 NMCRS 1:30 p.m. All Cmdrs. Mtg., Bldg Cust.Adv. Board Mtg. Lunch, Bldg 1 Conf. Room, 11:30 1, Conf. Rm, 10 a.m. 21 20 Mardi Gras 22 Lunchtime Bible Birthday, Federal Fat Tuesday All Khaki Social, Holiday DeCA Commissary Study, Bldg. 1, Conf. A&E, 3 p.m. DeCA Commissary Closed Rm., 11:30 - 12:30 Closed Seabee Ball Comm. Mtg., Bldg 1 Conf. Rm., 1:30 p.m. 27 Seabee Ball Committee Mtg., Bldg. 1 Conf. Rm., 1:30 p.m. 7 Girard Ret. Cer., Chapel, 10 a.m./ 3rd Annual Seabee Class Golf Tourn. Windance Coun. Club/ Frosty 5K Lunch Run, 11:30/Comics on Duty Tour, Theater, 7 p.m. Ground Hog Day 9 10 16 17 23 24 28 Lunchtime Bible 1 March Study, Bldg. 1, Conf. All Khaki Social, Rm., 11:30 - 12:30 A&E, 3 p.m. 16 CB PG 09-16 Ad Space 22 28 January 25, 2007 21 January January 25, 2007 13:18 Seabee Courier 1/24/2007 Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  8. 8. Page 10 PG 10 Color PG 15 color Healthy vision helps your world stay in focus Preventive eye care is important to everyone because eye conditions and diseases that can destroy you and your family's healthy vision can strike at any time in life, from newborn to old age. Infants and toddlers should be screened for common eye problems, such as strabismus (crossed eyes) and amblyopia (lazy eye) during their regular pediatric appointments. Vision testing is recommended for all children starting at around 6 months years of age. Most children and teenagers have healthy eyes, but they still need to take care of their vision by wearing protective eyewear when playing sports, doing yard work, working with chemicals or taking part in other activities that could cause an eye injury. Even young adults and middle-aged individuals can be affected by eye problems, so preventive measures should be taken to detect eye diseases early and to protect eyes from injury. These individuals should have a complete eye exam at least once between the ages of 20 and 29, at least twice between the ages of 30 and 39, and every two to four years between the ages of 40 and 65. Seniors over age 65 should have a complete eye exam by their Eye M.D. every one to two years for cataracts, glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and other eye conditions. Check with your Family Eye Doctor to see how often you should have a complete eye exam if any of the following risk factors affect you: History of eye injury, diabetes, family history of eye problems, African American over age 40 Protecting your eyes from accidents and early detection and treatment of eye problems are the best ways Eye Exam Guidelines Ages 6 months to 2 years: Schedule first exam with family eye doctor Ages 3 to 5: Schedule examination every one to two years Ages 6 to 19: Schedule examinations as needed Ages 20 to 29: One examination Ages 30 to 39: Two examinations Ages 40 to 65: Examination every two to four years Ages 65 and over: Examination every one to two years to keep your healthy vision throughout life. If you or your family are at risk for eye disease or experience any eye problems, visit your Eye M.D. promptly. January 25, 2007 VITA stands ready to help with your tax preparations 8 Provided by LN2 Eric W. Musick NLSO Central BROFF Gpt The VITA Tax Office is now open for appointments. You can file your 2006 taxes here free and conveniently. Located in Building 30, room 158, the Tax Center hours of operation are Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. and Friday from 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. The VITA tax office is open to all military members and their dependents'. The phone number for appointments and questions is 228-871-3500. When you arrive for your appointment you must provide a valid military identification card, or dependent identification card, and your Social Security card or a valid identification card with your social security number on it. Also bring all W2's and 1099 forms, along with other important paperwork. Powers of Attorney are required in order for you to file if your spouse is deployed. If you have Ad Space questions, please feel free to call the tax center. Photo by RP1 Chad Robinson SWCN Chad Shue explains the steel bending process to Capt. Katherine L. Gregory, Commander 30th Naval Construction Regiment at NMCB 74 Detail Guam's Laundry Facility construction project. Capt. Gregory and CMDCM (SCW) Michael E. Holdcraft of the 30th NCR were in Guam taking part in an Operational Readiness Inspection (ORI). Ad Space Gulf Coast USO 3001 6th Street, (Bldg 306), 228-575-5224 FREE SERVICES AVAILABLE Fax - Send & Receive (228-575-5225), Copies (limited amount) X-Box Snacks & Drinks, Information and Referral United through Reading Program Computers (4): with web cams, Internet Access, Email Access,Yahoo, Hotmail Office Hours: Monday – Friday 8a.m. - 5 p.m.Saturday 11 a.m. - 7 p.m., Closed on Sunday 15 CB PG 10-15 COLOR Provided by NCBC Safety Office NMCB 74 Operational Readiness Inspection January 25, 2007 13:19 Seabee Courier 1/24/2007 Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  9. 9. Page 11 PG 11 B&W PG14B&W Ribbon cut on VA pier built by NMCB 133 By MC3 J.A. McIver NMCB 133 Public Affairs The new pier at the veterans hospital is open for business. Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) ONE THIRTY-THREE'S Air Detachment, along with several patients, attended the ribbon-cutting. The original pier was constructed by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and stood for 15 years, until Hurricane Katrina destroyed the structure in August 2005, leaving only the original pilings standing. The Seabees were first on the scene to lend their skills and their spirit to the VA to ensure better quality of life for those who have served our country. Photo by MC2 Gregory N. Juday Equipment Operator Ryan Smith of New Orleans, La. from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 74 operates a NAV64B Track Loader at Out Post Viking on Jan. 3. Seabees from NMCB 74's Alfa Company went to Out Post Viking to build a culvert, to allow the Marines access to the main Entry Control Point. 74 builds bridges in time of war By MC2 Gregory N. Juday NMCB 74 Public Affairs January 25, 2007 It was a cold morning in Ramadi, Iraq, when eight Seabees from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 74 stepped off to complete a project at Out Post Viking, a small camp outside Fallujah. They were tasked with replacing an existing temporary bridge spanning a small canal with a more permanent crossing. To accomplish this, Fearless 74 place three culverts in the canal and then backfilled it to grade level. Marines from Fox Company, 2/8 Battalion had requested a more permanent crossing so that they could bring much needed heavy equipment and artillery vehicles across the canal and into their camp. "The bridge we had before was not sturdy or large enough to accommodate 7-ton trucks or tanks," said Gunnery Sergeant Vernon Getter of Fox Co., nd th 9 2 Battalion, 8 Marines. "Allowing these vehicles to enter the camp will heighten the security for the Marines stationed here." Several days of planning and three working days totaling 186 man hours went into placing the culverts for OP Viking. The Seabees placed over 300 tons of existing fill and another 300 tons brought in from Ramadi utilizing a John Deere 200 CLC Excavator and a NAV 64B Track loader to get the job done. "I feel good about helping the Marines out on the front lines," said Equipment Operator Ryan Smith of New Orleans, Louisiana. "They are out there everyday protecting us, so if we can make their lives easier by building a bridge, then I am proud to build them a bridge". During their time at OP Viking, the Marines supported the Seabees by providing them food, berthing and security for the duration of their stay. "At first I wasn't too thrilled about the accommodations, until I saw how some of the Marines living here slept at night, and I became more appreciative for what they had to give," said Equipment Operator Patrick Warner. "I came to realize that by working side by side with these guys and sleeping in close quarters for the duration of our stay, it helped bring us together; not just as a team but as a family." With limited hardened structures, most of the Marines slept outside in the cold night air often reaching temperatures in the mid 20s. To place the culverts leading to the entrance of the camp, the Seabees had to work from sunrise to sunset outside the safety perimeter of the camp. To help ensure the safety of our Seabees, the Marines posted security and patrolled the surrounding areas to make sure that there were no unforeseen incidents. "I believe it was the least See Bridges page 17 Ad Space Charles Sepich, Director of VA Medical Center, remarked on the enthusiasm of the crew. "The Seabees were here for us first when we needed them," said Sepich. Pier projects are normally handled by the Amphibious Construction Battalion (ACB). Project Supervisor BU1 (SCW) Michael Cadoret knew his team was equipped with the necessary skills to complete the project at its onset. "With our motivated crew and Air Det's 'Can Do' spirit, we will get the job done," said Cadoret. Later, Cadoret expressed his own satisfaction in being a part of the project. "Now the veterans will have a place to fish. They haven't had that for a long time." The Seabees have contributed to the quality of life at the hospital in the past as well, having built the basketball court, helping patients with transportation to various appointments, and participating in the patient Mardi Gras celebration. The effort of today's active duty Sailors shows consideration and respect for those who have gone before us. "Just to have today's active duty members serve those who have already served is a real treat," said Edward Cassel, spokesman for Biloxi VA Medical Center. The bait shop at the pier is estimated to open within a month, and the Seabees have been invited back to attend one of the many fish fries of the coming season. Gulf Coast Mardi Gras Parades Feb 3 Biloxi Children's Mardi Gras Walking Parade, Biloxi, 10 a.m. Feb 10 Krewe of Roses Parade Picayune, 6 p.m. Gautier Mens Club 18th Annual Mardi Gras Parade, Gautier, Parade, 7 p.m. Orange Grove Carnival Association Parade, Orange Grove, 2 p.m. Second Liners Mardi Gras Club Parade, Biloxi, 1 p.m. Feb 11 Carnival Association of Long Beach Mardi Gras Parade, Long Beach, 2 p.m. Krewe of Nereids Mardi Gras Parade, Waveland, 1 p.m. Feb 17 Jackson County Carnival Association Mardi Gras Parade, Pascagoula, 1 p.m Krewe of Diamondhead Parade, Diamondhead, Noon Krewe of Gemini Day Parade, Gulfport, 2 p.m. Feb 18 North Bay Area Mardi Gras Association, D'Iberville, 1:30 p.m. St. Pauls Carnival Association Mardi Gras Parade, Pass Christian, Noon Feb 20 Gulf Coast Carnival Association Parade, Biloxi, 1 p.m. Gulf Coast Carnival AssocIAtion Parade at 1 pm. Krewe of Neptune Parade, Biloxi, Starts after Biloxi Carnival Association Parade Krewe of Gemini Night Parade, Gulfport, 6 p.m. Krewe of Real People Mardi Gras Parade, Bay St. Louis, 1 p.m. For the latest information on Mardi Gras parade routes check the links at: http://www.gulfcoast.com/events and http://www.gulfcoast.org/calendar. Web tool now available to change Network passwords Provided by Jana Landers NCBC Info Tech Dept The Automated Password Reset (APR) Web site enables you to reset your NMCI network passwords, used for services such as Outlook Web Access (OWA) and remote network access, using your Common Access Card (CAC). The APR Web site is available at: http://pwdreset.nads.navy.m il from a Navy seat; or https://pwdreset.mcds.usmc. mil from a Marine Corps seat. Refer to the Automated Password Reset Quick Reference Guide for complete instructions. Please note that this tool cannot be used to change the PIN number associated with your CAC card. You should only use the APR Web site to reset your password if you have forgotten your NMCI network password. You should not use either of these two sites for routine pass- word changes. If you want or are prompted to change your password, press Ctrl + Alt + Delete on your keyboard and click Change Password. For complete instructions on changing your NMCI password through Windows refer to Password Tips for RAS Users within the Training section of Homeport. For more information, contact the NMCI Help Desk at (866) THE-NMCI. Ad Space 14 CB PG 11-14 What you don't know about safety could hurt you. January 25, 2007 13:19 Seabee Courier 1/24/2007 Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  10. 10. Pg12 Clean Clean CB PG 12-13 COLOR 13:19 January 25, 2007 January 25, 2007 1/24/2007 Seabee Courier Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd Page 12 Pg13
  11. 11. Page 11 PG 11 B&W PG14B&W Ribbon cut on VA pier built by NMCB 133 By MC3 J.A. McIver NMCB 133 Public Affairs The new pier at the veterans hospital is open for business. Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) ONE THIRTY-THREE'S Air Detachment, along with several patients, attended the ribbon-cutting. The original pier was constructed by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and stood for 15 years, until Hurricane Katrina destroyed the structure in August 2005, leaving only the original pilings standing. The Seabees were first on the scene to lend their skills and their spirit to the VA to ensure better quality of life for those who have served our country. Photo by MC2 Gregory N. Juday Equipment Operator Ryan Smith of New Orleans, La. from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 74 operates a NAV64B Track Loader at Out Post Viking on Jan. 3. Seabees from NMCB 74's Alfa Company went to Out Post Viking to build a culvert, to allow the Marines access to the main Entry Control Point. 74 builds bridges in time of war By MC2 Gregory N. Juday NMCB 74 Public Affairs January 25, 2007 It was a cold morning in Ramadi, Iraq, when eight Seabees from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 74 stepped off to complete a project at Out Post Viking, a small camp outside Fallujah. They were tasked with replacing an existing temporary bridge spanning a small canal with a more permanent crossing. To accomplish this, Fearless 74 place three culverts in the canal and then backfilled it to grade level. Marines from Fox Company, 2/8 Battalion had requested a more permanent crossing so that they could bring much needed heavy equipment and artillery vehicles across the canal and into their camp. "The bridge we had before was not sturdy or large enough to accommodate 7-ton trucks or tanks," said Gunnery Sergeant Vernon Getter of Fox Co., nd th 11 2 Battalion, 8 Marines. "Allowing these vehicles to enter the camp will heighten the security for the Marines stationed here." Several days of planning and three working days totaling 186 man hours went into placing the culverts for OP Viking. The Seabees placed over 300 tons of existing fill and another 300 tons brought in from Ramadi utilizing a John Deere 200 CLC Excavator and a NAV 64B Track loader to get the job done. "I feel good about helping the Marines out on the front lines," said Equipment Operator Ryan Smith of New Orleans, Louisiana. "They are out there everyday protecting us, so if we can make their lives easier by building a bridge, then I am proud to build them a bridge". During their time at OP Viking, the Marines supported the Seabees by providing them food, berthing and security for the duration of their stay. "At first I wasn't too thrilled about the accommodations, until I saw how some of the Marines living here slept at night, and I became more appreciative for what they had to give," said Equipment Operator Patrick Warner. "I came to realize that by working side by side with these guys and sleeping in close quarters for the duration of our stay, it helped bring us together; not just as a team but as a family." With limited hardened structures, most of the Marines slept outside in the cold night air often reaching temperatures in the mid 20s. To place the culverts leading to the entrance of the camp, the Seabees had to work from sunrise to sunset outside the safety perimeter of the camp. To help ensure the safety of our Seabees, the Marines posted security and patrolled the surrounding areas to make sure that there were no unforeseen incidents. "I believe it was the least See Bridges page 23 Ad Space Charles Sepich, Director of VA Medical Center, remarked on the enthusiasm of the crew. "The Seabees were here for us first when we needed them," said Sepich. Pier projects are normally handled by the Amphibious Construction Battalion (ACB). Project Supervisor BU1 (SCW) Michael Cadoret knew his team was equipped with the necessary skills to complete the project at its onset. "With our motivated crew and Air Det's 'Can Do' spirit, we will get the job done," said Cadoret. Later, Cadoret expressed his own satisfaction in being a part of the project. "Now the veterans will have a place to fish. They haven't had that for a long time." The Seabees have contributed to the quality of life at the hospital in the past as well, having built the basketball court, helping patients with transportation to various appointments, and participating in the patient Mardi Gras celebration. The effort of today's active duty Sailors shows consideration and respect for those who have gone before us. "Just to have today's active duty members serve those who have already served is a real treat," said Edward Cassel, spokesman for Biloxi VA Medical Center. The bait shop at the pier is estimated to open within a month, and the Seabees have been invited back to attend one of the many fish fries of the coming season. Gulf Coast Mardi Gras Parades Feb 3 Biloxi Children's Mardi Gras Walking Parade, Biloxi, 10 a.m. Feb 10 Krewe of Roses Parade Picayune, 6 p.m. Gautier Mens Club 18th Annual Mardi Gras Parade, Gautier, Parade, 7 p.m. Orange Grove Carnival Association Parade, Orange Grove, 2 p.m. Second Liners Mardi Gras Club Parade, Biloxi, 1 p.m. Feb 11 Carnival Association of Long Beach Mardi Gras Parade, Long Beach, 2 p.m. Krewe of Nereids Mardi Gras Parade, Waveland, 1 p.m. Feb 17 Jackson County Carnival Association Mardi Gras Parade, Pascagoula, 1 p.m Krewe of Diamondhead Parade, Diamondhead, Noon Krewe of Gemini Day Parade, Gulfport, 2 p.m. Feb 18 North Bay Area Mardi Gras Association, D'Iberville, 1:30 p.m. St. Pauls Carnival Association Mardi Gras Parade, Pass Christian, Noon Feb 20 Gulf Coast Carnival Association Parade, Biloxi, 1 p.m. Gulf Coast Carnival AssocIAtion Parade at 1 pm. Krewe of Neptune Parade, Biloxi, Starts after Biloxi Carnival Association Parade Krewe of Gemini Night Parade, Gulfport, 6 p.m. Krewe of Real People Mardi Gras Parade, Bay St. Louis, 1 p.m. For the latest information on Mardi Gras parade routes check the links at: http://www.gulfcoast.com/events and http://www.gulfcoast.org/calendar. Web tool now available to change Network passwords Provided by Jana Landers NCBC Info Tech Dept The Automated Password Reset (APR) Web site enables you to reset your NMCI network passwords, used for services such as Outlook Web Access (OWA) and remote network access, using your Common Access Card (CAC). The APR Web site is available at: http://pwdreset.nads.navy.m il from a Navy seat; or https://pwdreset.mcds.usmc. mil from a Marine Corps seat. Refer to the Automated Password Reset Quick Reference Guide for complete instructions. Please note that this tool cannot be used to change the PIN number associated with your CAC card. You should only use the APR Web site to reset your password if you have forgotten your NMCI network password. You should not use either of these two sites for routine pass- word changes. If you want or are prompted to change your password, press Ctrl + Alt + Delete on your keyboard and click Change Password. For complete instructions on changing your NMCI password through Windows refer to Password Tips for RAS Users within the Training section of Homeport. For more information, contact the NMCI Help Desk at (866) THE-NMCI. Ad Space 11 CB PG 11-14 What you don't know about safety could hurt you. January 25, 2007 13:19 Seabee Courier 1/24/2007 Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  12. 12. Page 10 PG 10 Color PG 15 color Healthy vision helps your world stay in focus Preventive eye care is important to everyone because eye conditions and diseases that can destroy you and your family's healthy vision can strike at any time in life, from newborn to old age. Infants and toddlers should be screened for common eye problems, such as strabismus (crossed eyes) and amblyopia (lazy eye) during their regular pediatric appointments. Vision testing is recommended for all children starting at around 6 months years of age. Most children and teenagers have healthy eyes, but they still need to take care of their vision by wearing protective eyewear when playing sports, doing yard work, working with chemicals or taking part in other activities that could cause an eye injury. Even young adults and middle-aged individuals can be affected by eye problems, so preventive measures should be taken to detect eye diseases early and to protect eyes from injury. These individuals should have a complete eye exam at least once between the ages of 20 and 29, at least twice between the ages of 30 and 39, and every two to four years between the ages of 40 and 65. Seniors over age 65 should have a complete eye exam by their Eye M.D. every one to two years for cataracts, glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and other eye conditions. Check with your Family Eye Doctor to see how often you should have a complete eye exam if any of the following risk factors affect you: History of eye injury, diabetes, family history of eye problems, African American over age 40 Protecting your eyes from accidents and early detection and treatment of eye problems are the best ways Eye Exam Guidelines Ages 6 months to 2 years: Schedule first exam with family eye doctor Ages 3 to 5: Schedule examination every one to two years Ages 6 to 19: Schedule examinations as needed Ages 20 to 29: One examination Ages 30 to 39: Two examinations Ages 40 to 65: Examination every two to four years Ages 65 and over: Examination every one to two years to keep your healthy vision throughout life. If you or your family are at risk for eye disease or experience any eye problems, visit your Eye M.D. promptly. January 25, 2007 VITA stands ready to help with your tax preparations 10 Provided by LN2 Eric W. Musick NLSO Central BROFF Gpt The VITA Tax Office is now open for appointments. You can file your 2006 taxes here free and conveniently. Located in Building 30, room 158, the Tax Center hours of operation are Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. and Friday from 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. The VITA tax office is open to all military members and their dependents'. The phone number for appointments and questions is 228-871-3500. When you arrive for your appointment you must provide a valid military identification card, or dependent identification card, and your Social Security card or a valid identification card with your social security number on it. Also bring all W2's and 1099 forms, along with other important paperwork. Powers of Attorney are required in order for you to file if your spouse is deployed. If you have Ad Space questions, please feel free to call the tax center. Photo by RP1 Chad Robinson SWCN Chad Shue explains the steel bending process to Capt. Katherine L. Gregory, Commander 30th Naval Construction Regiment at NMCB 74 Detail Guam's Laundry Facility construction project. Capt. Gregory and CMDCM (SCW) Michael E. Holdcraft of the 30th NCR were in Guam taking part in an Operational Readiness Inspection (ORI). Ad Space Gulf Coast USO 3001 6th Street, (Bldg 306), 228-575-5224 FREE SERVICES AVAILABLE Fax - Send & Receive (228-575-5225), Copies (limited amount) X-Box Snacks & Drinks, Information and Referral United through Reading Program Computers (4): with web cams, Internet Access, Email Access,Yahoo, Hotmail Office Hours: Monday – Friday 8a.m. - 5 p.m.Saturday 11 a.m. - 7 p.m., Closed on Sunday 12 CB PG 10-15 COLOR Provided by NCBC Safety Office NMCB 74 Operational Readiness Inspection January 25, 2007 13:19 Seabee Courier 1/24/2007 Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  13. 13. Page 9 PG16 B&W Clean PG 9 B&W Photo by MC1 Sean Mulligan The Navy's Chief of Chaplains, RADM Robert Burt visited CBC Gulfport for a Chaplains Conference January 9. While onboard, the Admiral took the time to speak with Seabees from NMCB 133 about deployments and the role Navy Chaplains play in a deployed unit. SESA The Senior Enlisted Spouses Association (SESA) is for spouses of E7-E9. All branches of the military are welcome. For additional information, contact SESA at sesacbc@yahoo.com. NMCB 1 FSG We would like to invite all friends and family of NMCB 1 Seabees to join us on the first Thursday of every month at 6:30 p.m. at the CBC Chapel in Fellowship Hall. Bring the kids, babysitting is available and free. The NMCB 1 FSG offers fun activities including movies, picnics, bonfires, holiday parties and lots more for the whole family. During homeport and during the deployment we are available to help support all of our NMCB 1 families and friends. If you have any questions please call the FSG president, Briana McAllister at (228) 868-8767 or email her at donzgoddess@yahoo.com. We hope to see you there. NMCB 1 FSG also has a new website that will keep you up to date on what is happening within our military family. The new website is: http://hub.cinchouse.com/nmcb1seabees. NMCB 133 FSG We would like to invite all friends and family members of NMCB 133 to join us on the first Wednesday of every month at 6:00 p.m. in the base chapel. We also do many activities such as holiday parties, fun trips, movie outings and more. During homeport we share in each others excitement and during deployments we lean on each other for support. We offer battalion information and welcome those with children, those without, wives, husbands and other loved ones. NMCB 7 FSG Come join our growing family. We are here to promote and grow social relationships and encourage interaction of spouses and family members during often trying and difficult times during the deployment of our NMCB 7 men and women. We have lots of fundraisers and activities planned for the whole family. There are games and crafts for the kids and speakers on different topics for the adults. We will also have drawdowns for door prizes and refreshments each month. We meet the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. with a potluck dinner at the start. Come and get together with us and meet your fellow family members. For more information on NMCB 7's FSG, contact Kathleen Whisenhunt, FSG president at kwhisenhunt@gmail.com. You can also check out nmcb7fsg@cinchouse.com and http://hub.cinchouse.com/nmcb7fsg/for more information. NMCB 74 FSG The NMCB 74 Family Support Group welcomes friends and families of NMCB 74 personnel. We encourage and promote friendly and sympathetic relationships among our family members. We have a new Careline number for battalion updates, it is 1866-531-1101 (toll free), or 8713650 (local). Family Support Group meetings are held every third Monday of the month at the CBC Chapel in Fellowship Hall at 6:30 p.m. Free baby-sitting and activities for the children are provided. For information contact FSG President, Helen Walker at (228) 586-0114; or Secretary, Robyn Baca at (228) 539-9059. The FSG Advisor is Susan Prather, (228) 392-5945. NCTC TRI-SERVICE FSG We invite all spouses and loved ones of NCTC to join us on the fourth Monday of each month at 6:30pm in the Fellowship Hall of CBC Chapel. We are offering fun activities for the family, girls night out, and fellowship among the NCTC Command. For more information, please contact our FSG President Tessa Grimes @ 865-4364 or email her at tgrimes730@hotmail.com. Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society The Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society (NMCRS) Thrift Shop is located at the far north end of McKinney Ave, Building 16. The Thrift Shop is staffed entirely by volunteers. The retail hours of operation are Monday Thursday, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. and Friday, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. New volunteers are always welcome. Visit the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society offices at the Fleet and family Support Center, Building 30, Suite 103, or call (228) 871-2610 to obtain information about becoming a part of the NMCRS volunteer team! Childcare and mileage are reimbursed. Mississippi Gulf Coast First Class Association MGCFCA is seeking new members. Meetings are every Weds at 2 p.m at CBC's Beehive, Bldg. 352. Call BU1 Reyes or CE1 Johnson at 871-2145 for more information. Community Calendar Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday 22 23 24 25 Anti-terrorism Force Protection Qrtrly Mtg., Bldg 1, Conf. Rm., 1:30 p.m. All Khaki Social, A&E, 3 p.m. 26 CMDCM Melvin 27 28 January 25, 2007 21 January 29 30 Seabee Ball Committee Mtg., Bldg. 1 Conf. Rm., 1:30 p.m. 31 Lunchtime Bible Study, Bldg. 1, Conf. Rm., 11:30 - 12:30 Grand Opening Pine Bayou Snackbar, 11:30 1 February 2 3 All Khaki Social, A&E, 3 p.m. 6 Seabee Ball Committee Mtg., Bldg. 1 Conf. Rm., 1:30 p.m. 7 Lunchtime Bible Study, Bldg. 1, Conf. Rm., 11:30 - 12:30 8 All Khaki Social, A&E, 3 p.m. 13 Seabee Ball 14 Valentine's Day 15 4 11 5 12 Lincoln's Birthday 18 19 Washington's 25 26 Val. Day 5K Run, 6:30 Committee Mtg., All Khaki Social, Lunchtime Bible Study, Bldg. 1 Bldg. 1, Conf. Rm., A&E, 3 p.m. Conf. Rm., 11:30 NMCRS 1:30 p.m. All Cmdrs. Mtg., Bldg Cust.Adv. Board Mtg. Lunch, Bldg 1 Conf. Room, 11:30 1, Conf. Rm, 10 a.m. 21 20 Mardi Gras 22 Lunchtime Bible Birthday, Federal Fat Tuesday All Khaki Social, Holiday DeCA Commissary Study, Bldg. 1, Conf. A&E, 3 p.m. DeCA Commissary Closed Rm., 11:30 - 12:30 Closed Seabee Ball Comm. Mtg., Bldg 1 Conf. Rm., 1:30 p.m. 27 Seabee Ball Committee Mtg., Bldg. 1 Conf. Rm., 1:30 p.m. 9 Girard Ret. Cer., Chapel, 10 a.m./ 3rd Annual Seabee Class Golf Tourn. Windance Coun. Club/ Frosty 5K Lunch Run, 11:30/Comics on Duty Tour, Theater, 7 p.m. Ground Hog Day 9 10 16 17 23 24 28 Lunchtime Bible 1 March Study, Bldg. 1, Conf. All Khaki Social, Rm., 11:30 - 12:30 A&E, 3 p.m. 13 CB PG 09-16 Chaplains define their mission within the NCF Seabee Community Notes January 25, 2007 13:18 Seabee Courier 1/24/2007 Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  14. 14. 1/24/2007 14:15 Page 1 PG 8 COLOR ADS PG 17 Color CLEAN Youth Activities Center Jan 25 5:30 to 8:30 Jan 26 6:00 to 9:00 Jan 27 1:00 to 5:00 Jan 30 Jan 31 5:30 to 8:30 5:30 to 8:30 Wacky, Tacky Outfit Day! Prizes Awarded! Youth & Teen Movie & Nacho Night! Only $1.00 Swimming at Biloxi Natatorium! Only $3.00 Boys Only Night! Youth Bucks Auction!!! Taekwondo classes are being offered Wednesday and Fridays from 6 - 7 p.m. You must be 10 years of age or older to participate. Classes are free to all eligible patrons. The classes will cover the following: Stretching and warm up Form pattern and stances Self Defense Kicking and blocking drills Cool down/ceremony meditation Sparring Training and Testing Participants will be required to purchase uniform and protective equipment. Participants who complete the course will receive International certification. Participants who earn the next color belt will be charged a $30.00 testing fee which covers certification and new belt. Black belt testing is through the International TaeKwon-Do Federation and includes additional testing fees. Comics on Duty World Tour LIVE at CBC Gulfport! POOL TOURNEY 7 p.m. *FREE* MOVIE NIGHT $5.00 HORSEBACK RIDING @ HIGH HILLS STABLES MATINEE MOVIES *FREE* BLACKJACK TOUR 7 p.m. *FREE* PUZZLES OF ALL KINDS * PRIZES FOR PARTICIPATION* DART TOURNEY 7 p.m. *FREE* Smith Memorial Theatre Smith Memorial Theatre now offers Breakfast and Lunch. Call 871- 4697 for movie times!!! Seabee Courier Stinger’s II Liberty Center is for Bachelors and Geo-Bachelors. Thank You! Contact MWR at (228) 871- 2538 8 14 CB PG 08-17 COLOR 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 January 25, 2007 January 25, 2007 Jan. 26 at 7 p.m. - Smith Memorial Theater Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  15. 15. 1/24/2007 13:18 Page 7 PG 7 B&W CLEAN PG 18 B&W 5X11.5 News & Notes from PSD Promise to Serve For Seabee Courier delivery, contact Naval Construction Battalion Center Public Affairs at: (228) 871-3662 or send email to seabeecourier.navy.mil Provided by PSC Reginald Pierce 2007 BAH RATES Military Pay Advisory 76/06 states initial W2 statements for tax year 2006 will be available electronically via MyPay, 22 January 2007 for view and print. Service members also have the option on MyPay to view and print W2 and corrected W2-C statements up to four prior years. W2/W2-C view and print option will be available via MyPay Internet site at https://mypay.dfas.mil. Do not be alarmed if after selecting the W2 option you receive one of the following screen messages; "The file is not currently available. Please try again later" or "Your pay system in not responding. Please try again later", the W2 server is taken off line periodically for routine maintenance and will be See PSD page 23 The family of SW2 Chris McLean, a Seabee attached to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion One, waited with open arms as the battalion returned home from their six-month deployment to the far East. NMCB 1 reunites with friends, families Story & photos by MC2 Demetrius Kennon NMCB 1 Public Affairs Before it's time for a Seabee to deploy, many preparations must be made. Of course, there are all the medical screenings, extensive training, and record updates. Not to mention packing, organizing finances, and arranging storage for personal items. But that's not even the half of it for Seabees with families. Once a deployment begins, Seabees have to leave their families behind. But all their hard work and dedication before and during deployment pays off when they return home. Naval Mobile Construction Battalion One (NMCB 1) returned home to Naval Construction Battalion Center (NCBC) Gulfport, Miss., in December 2006, to a poignant homecoming. "I was very emotional when I came off the plane," said Lt. Cmdr. Chad Brooks, the Operations Officer for NMCB 1. "I was very excited but in the same part, I felt a little bit guilty because I could see how much the kids had changed and knew that I'd been away for a lot of that time when they had seen and learned new things." After the initial euphoria of seeing family, the reality of becoming a family again sets in and it's a really challenging time, said Brooks. Brooks has a 4-year-old son and a 2-year-old daughter. "My wife told me they had a good deployment," he said. "The kids handled it well, and I think they understood that I was gone for a very long time and for a good cause." NMCB 1 was deployed for six months to 20 locations across the globe including sites in Japan, Korea, Iraq, Pohnpei and California, said Brooks. Though the Seabees kept extremely busy in the field, they still missed spending time with their families. "That time is lost," said Brooks. "The things the kids learned and experienced during that time has come and gone." "Make sure if you have young kids, you actually talk to them about deployment, so that it doesn't come to them as a surprise," he added. "No matter how you slice it, being deployed is tough in terms of maintaining a relationship with your family," Brooks said. "We did lots of emails and lots of letters." One of the most important things for Seabees who will be leaving their families is having a means to communicate with their loved ones. Seabees should have some agreement with their families as to how they're going to communicate, whether it's email, phone calls, or Web cam, said Brooks. This prevents false expectations for the amount of communication that will be available. "If your family expects to hear from you every week and for some reason you can't, they may begin to worry about you unnecessarily or feel that you're not paying attention to them," Brooks said. "It's a lifestyle you never get used to," said Utilitiesman 1st Class Adrian Gonzalez, the Leading Petty Officer for Detail Iwakuni in NMCB 1. "You just learn how to deal with it." Gonzalez has a son, 17, and a daughter, 14, and speaks very highly of them both. Gonzalez describes his reunion with them after deployment simply as "fantastic." Gonzalez's pride was almost overwhelming when he talked about his son. With a stern look in his eye he said, "I'm not saying this just because he's my son, but he's probably the smartest kid I have ever encountered." The life of a deployed Seabee can be just as hard as the lives of the family back home, so the key is mutual support from both ends. "The sacrifices I make for my kids might be challenging, but for them it's well worth it in the end," said Gonzalez. Observe parking signs onboard NCBC; violators will be ticketed! Ad Space 15 CB PG 07-18 W2 INFORMATION FOR TAX YEAR 2006 Naval Mobile Construction Battalion One Seabees returned home from six months in 20 locations around the world to their families. The families waited patiently at the hangar doors of the Trent Lott Air National Guard Airport in Gulfport. January 25, 2007 January 25, 2007 7 A refresher on Force Protection Condition definitions is provided by CBC Security Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) is based on geographic duty location, pay grade, and dependency status. The intent of BAH is to provide uniformed service members with permanent duty within the 50 United States accurate and equitable housing compensation based on housing costs in local civilian housing markets, and is payable when government quarters are not provided. A uniformed service member stationed overseas, including U.S. protectorates, who is not furnished government housing, is eligible for Overseas Housing Allowance (OHA). Sailors can look up their 2007 BAH rates on the following Internet site: https://secureapp2.hqda.p entagon.mil/perdiem/bah .html Seabee Courier Photo by MC3 Ja'lon Rhinehart EQCM (SCW) Jeffrey Robinson, Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) One's Alfa Company Master Chief, is reenlisted by Marine Corps Capt. Jake Urban for three years. Master Chief Robinson has faithfully served the Seabee's for over 26 years, and looks forward to the next three, which he will spend attached to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion Seven. Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd
  16. 16. Page 6 PG 6 B&W CLEAN By MC3 J.A. McIver NMCB 133 Public Affairs January 25, 2007 The Seabees at Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) One Thirty Three received commendation certificates mid-month for volunteering to restore American Legion's Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 2539. The old post was damaged by Hurricane Katrina in the fall of 2005. The project took 80 Seabees and 184 mandays to complete. Members of One Thirty Three stripped and replaced the roof on the post's main shed, built shelves, helped out with the electrical work and circuitry, and painted over 10,000 square feet of wall and trim after pressure washing the area. Charles Purchner, Vice Commander at Post 2539, extended thanks on behalf of the post, to Project Supervisor EA1 (SCW) Peter Sydow and his crew. "They really did a great job, and we appreciate Photo by MC3 J.A. McIver The members at VFW Post 2539 served the members of NMCB 133 dinner at the commendation ceremony, where 80 Seabees received certificates for restoring the post. it," said Purchner. "We hope that someday we can pay them back." Sydow returned the same respect for all that the post does for the Seabees at Construction Battalion Center (CBC) Gulfport. "The post has donated a lot to us," said Sydow, indicating gifts the post has given to the battalions at CBC Gulfport from phone cards to a pool table. "It felt good to help them out, after they've helped us so much. It actually felt like we were paying them back." The camaraderie between active duty and veterans is apparent at VFW 2539. Several Seabees that participated in the project joined the post as members. Ivan Bangs, Commander at Post 2539 recognizes the unique bond between presentday servicemembers and veterans. "Everyone has done something," said Bangs. "We've all contributed." Public Private Venture (PPV) Provided by CNRSE Public Affairs As part of an ongoing effort to ensure Navy Family Housing residents are kept up to date on the conversion of military housing to a Public Private Venture sometime in fiscal year 2007, town hall meetings were recently held in order to communicate with residents on their questions and concerns. This is the first in a series of articles in which Frequently Asked Questions from the residents during these meetings will be published. Q1 Why are we doing PPV in the first place? A1 A shrinking housing 6 budget coupled with aging housing units and maintenance backlog make it difficult for the Navy to provide quality housing for our service members. The public private venture partnership will make it possible for the Navy to renovate and construct family housing quickly and affordably. Q2 Will there be effective oversight by the government of this PPV program? A2 Yes, the Navy as well as the Office of the Secretary of Defense for Installation and Environment support appropriate oversight. This oversight will be applied by the Department of Navy Representative and the Navy's Business Agreement Manager as well as the Navy's on-site Housing Staff. On-site Navy Housing Staff will work daily with the Partner's Staff and the Department of the Navy Representative who will meet with the Partner on an as required basis but at least quarterly to review operations. They will also receive monthly status reports that will address occupancy issues, the project's financial status, etc. Q3 What impact will privatization have on individual installations? A3 Ideally, privatization will bring about a dramatic improvement of the installations' housing conditions and services for military members and their families, and consequently, an increase in their quality of life, readiness, morale and retention. One major improvement is the quality and quantity of maintenance on the housing units. However, some inconveniences may occur throughout the transition period during which some housing will be either renovated or constructed. Q4 When will PPV start? A4 Scheduled implementation date is 30 SEP 2007, some transition may occur 30 days prior to the 30 Sep date. Q5 What will happen to excess Family Housing (FH) units? A5 Will be determined during exclusive negotiations between the Navy and the Partner. Q6 Can residents live in their assigned unit if it is scheduled for closing? A6 Will be determined durSee PPV page 19 Send free Valentine's Day messages to your sweetheart Reprinted from Stars and Stripes Stars and Stripes, the daily newspaper of the U.S. military, is hosting a free Valentine's Day message posting service online. The greetings will be published in the European, Pacific and Middle East editions of Stars and Stripes and on Stripes.com Feb. 14 and possibly also on Feb. 13, depending on the number of messages received. Stars and Stripes recognizes the strain that deployments and frequent separations can put on a marriage and wants to give spouses and family members a way to remember each other on this special day. "Being separated from loved ones is one of the constants in the lives of our readers," said Meg Irish, marketing director. "Anything we can do to bridge that gap, Stars and Stripes will gladly undertake." To send a free message, readers may go to Stripes.com and click on the Valentine's Day messages button, any time until Jan 30. Stars and Stripes will publish only messages written in English which are received online by the Jan. 30 deadline. Every effort will be made to print all the messages received for the Middle East, European and Pacific recipients, but Stars and Stripes also reserves the right to limit the number of messages actually published based on the space available. Stars and Stripes delivers independent news and information daily to the U.S. military community worldwide. Editorially independent of interference from outside its editorial chain of command, it provides commercially available U.S. and worldwide news. From PPV page 5 ing exclusive negotiations between the Navy and the Partner. Q7 How much housing is DoD planning to privatize? A7 DoD currently has an inventory of 166,000 family housing units-with about 50,000 inadequate units. Its current plans are to privatize roughly 185,000 family housing units. However, there is no ceiling set on the number of units expected to be built or reconditioned under the MHPI (source: http://www.acq.osd.mil/ housing/faqs.htm#10) Q8 How is privatized housing similar to military housing? A8 A few of the similarities are: 1. Zero out of pocket expenses for residents; rent is based on BAH 2. You will continue to live in a military community 3. Government pays for the cost of moves into PPV units for eligible service members 4. You will continue to go to the Navy's Housing Welcome Center for housing in the community referral. 5. The Navy Housing Welcome Center will receive your application for PPV housing and will refer you to the Property Management Company Q9 How is privatized housing different from military housing? A9 Units are managed and operated by a private property management company. 1. You must sign a lease. The lease will include a "military clause". 2. You will receive BAH and pay rent directly to the property manager 3. The property management company handles all resident matters, including day to day maintenance Q10 Is the Navy reviewing lessons learned from existing PPV projects? A10 Yes, Navy is looking at all existing PPV deals, to include those from other DoD services to ascertain the best aspects of the projects and is incorporating those lessons in future deals Q11 What is the Resident Advisory Board and who is on it? A11 The Resident Advisory Board will be created to support the Partner and the Department of Navy (DON) on matters that affect resident satisfaction and quality of life. It will review resident satisfaction surveys, property manager performance, and construction process and quality. The Resident Advisory Board will report its findings to the management board and make recommendations on resident issues to the partner and DON members. Recommended DON participants include the activity business manager, Command Master Chief or Sergeant Major, activity housing representative, elected residents, and the Resident Officer in Charge of Construction (ROICC) office. Q12 How does the PPV program impact families where the non-military member does not work? A12 PPV has no adverse impact on working spouses. It has no affect on your ability to utilize programs such as Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), Head Start and other income qualifying assistance programs. Q13 Why is my benefit of living in Navy/Govt housing being taken away? A13 There is no loss of benefit. You still have the opportunity to reside in housing and for an amount equal to your BAH. The only difference is that in lieu of forfeiting your BAH (to pay for your housing and utilities), you now will receive it, and then pay that amount to the partner in the form of rent, utilities, and basic renter's insurance. The DON is embracing the PPV initiative in order to provide high quality, affordable housing and provide enhanced property maintenance faster than would be available under the normal military construction. Q14 Will accompanied active duty always have priority? A14 Yes. Q15 Can active duty displace those with a lower priority? A15 We expect those other than accompanied families to have no more than a 6 months lease If there are accompanied active duty families on a waiting list, the Partner will not renew the existing lease for a lower priority resident. Q16 Will there be a screening process for civilians authorized to live on base? A16 Yes. Specifics will be negotiated between the Navy and the Partner. Q17 Will civilians approved to live on base be monitored at the gates? A17 Yes, to the same extent as anyone else having access to the base. Q18 What will the new rules (community policies) be? A18 The new property manager (at the resident meetings) will discuss community policies. Generally, they will be the same as the existing Navy policies. Q19 If the General Public moves into FH, will they have access to other base facilities. A19 No. Q20 Will the fence line be moved? A20 Will be determined during exclusive negotiations between the Navy and the Partner, but in most cases, this has not occurred. Q21 How does DON plan Keesler's Medical Center Entrance Closed for Renovation Keesler Medical Center's A Tower entrance, at the top of the elevated driveway, will be closed for renovation starting Jan. 20. It is scheduled to reopen the end of March. The outpatient clinic entrance by the Pharmacy and Family Practice Clinic will still be available for patients and staff to use. The renovation is part of a project to place outpatient records and the state-of-the art PRK surgery clinic in this area to ensure they, and other high-value items will be safe from future storm-related flooding. to address episodes of financial irresponsibility that may occur by occupants of PPV Housing? A21 Currently, the Navy Housing Office provides counseling on this issue. The Navy very much encourages residents of PPV Housing to utilize Electronic Funds Transfer for payment of rent and level payment plans for payment of Utilities. The Navy is looking at all avenues for education on financial responsibility, for example Command Master Chiefs & Family Service Center counselors. Alternately financial irresponsibility will be the responsibility of the PPV partner. Q22 What recourse will military families occupying PPV Housing have if the property manager is irresponsive to service needs? A23 If the local property manager is unresponsive then the resident will be able to contact a corporate Regional representative. Also, personnel at the Housing Welcome Center, including its military liaison, will continue to be available to occupants of PPV Housing. Q24 What about privatizing barracks, and DoD lodging? A24 DoD is currently testing privatization of barracks in Norfolk and San Diego and would like to privatize additional barracks and lodging where and when it is feasible. Ad Space 16 CB PG 06-19 133 partners with local VFW Post 2539 PG 19 B&W 2 Col. Cln January 25, 2007 13:17 Seabee Courier 1/24/2007 Seabee Courier 25Jan07.qxd

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