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The 43 FSS BRAC effort is on schedule

  • Published
  • By 43rd Force Support Squadron
  • Office of the Deputy Director
When Base Realignment and Closure was initially announced in 2005, the post-BRAC final footprint for Pope Airmen and their families was unknown. During the following years, the Army and the Air Force coordinated a transition timeline and developed a transfer plan.

Airmen assigned to Pope's 43rd Services Squadron knew that BRAC would happen eventually, but were without a schedule or an idea of what this transition would look like. For the next few years, the Army and the Air force ironed out the BRAC transfer plan from Pope Air Force Base to Pope Army Air Field.

In June 2008, the 43rd SVS and the 43rd Mission Support Squadron merged to become the new 43rd Force Support Squadron. The 43rd FSS was given more responsibilities, and the BRAC plan was still being established. The MSS operations would downsize to the new post-BRAC footprint, but the SVS piece was still uncertain. In December 2009, the Joint Installation Transfer Conference was held, which changed everything and members in FSS were provided a plan.

Two leads were appointed--Michael Amarosa, Fort Bragg Family, Morale, Welfare and Recreation, chief operating officer, and Ms. Betty Crain, 43rd FSS Deputy Director. Their job is to meet all the provided milestones and make the transition seamless. To avoid redundant operations, the team worked hand-in-hand to decided which activities to transfer to FMWR and which to close. A joint goal, "Seamless to Customers and Harmless to Employees," was adopted to avoid any disruptions in operations which would create a problem for customers. The primary goal is to save as many jobs as possible for the outstanding and dedicated 43rd FSS employees, Mrs. Crain said.

The Pope Golf Course, with the exception of Habaneros Mexican Grill, closed October 2009. FMWR is taking ownership of the Golf Course facility and plans to retain the grill. The Habaneros' staff will become FMWR employees. The golf course grounds transfer to Fort Bragg, March 1, 2011 and plans are to convert them into an athletic complex, complete with sports fields.

Redundant operations were identified as the Pope Library; Information, Tickets and Travel; Flight Line Café and the Pope Club. The Library closed April 30, and the other operations will be closed on varying dates before Sept. 30.

Many of the remaining 43rd FSS activities are becoming part of the FMWR. The Child Development Center and School Age Program close June 30, and re-open as a green FMWR operation July 1. A plan gave employees the option to transfer with the operations. The same employees will be present July 1 which were there June 30, reinstalling the goal, "Seamless to Customers & Harmless to Employee."

Pope's Fitness Center, Bowling Center, Arts & Crafts, Pool and Lodging; will be transferred to Oct. 1. Many of same employees are in these operations, too. The Kitty Hawk dining facility transfers Oct. 1 to become part of Ft Bragg's Directorate of Logistics.

During the beginning stages of BRAC, many FSS Airmen were uncertain of the transition from the Air Force to the Army. As the process started, the partners worked closely with the Army and members' concerns decreased. FMWR offers many programs which reach out to all branches of service.

Regardless of the branch of service members work for, the ultimate goal for all MWR personnel is to take care of military members and their families by providing top quality family, morale, welfare and recreation programs that make all of us proud of what we do. FMWR continues this tradition.