FORT BLISS, Texas –
DLA Director Air Force Lt. Gen. Andy Busch observed the divestiture of Army property over to DLA Distribution and DLA Disposition Services during his April 5 visit to Fort Bliss, Texas, one of the first sites to start the process.
During his March 29 visit to DLA Disposition Services headquarters, Busch talked about the major support going on at Army posts like Fort Bliss as the service divests itself of miles and miles of unneeded vehicles, noting that the streamlining DLA Disposition Services personnel have done to the turn-in process has really helped. Senior leaders are saying those actions make turn-ins quicker and easier for individual soldiers as the Army removes more than 2 million pieces of equipment from its inventories at numerous installations.
“This is one of the biggest divestiture efforts in the services in several decades,” said DLA Disposition Services Director Mike Cannon. “The partnership and communication between us and the Army, at field and headquarters levels, is allowing us to posture resources for mission success.”
To get the job done at Fort Bliss, DLA Disposition Services West Director Christopher “Buck” Buchanan said that a “cross dock” location is support the base. He explained that a cross-dock location serves as a consolidation point for customers to drop off property where it is collected and then shipped to the gaining hub. For Fort Bliss, that means property goes by cross docking to Tuscan, Arizona
“Being that they are a small cross dock and have a couple vacancies right now, and looking at the volume of property being turned in for this evolution, we brought in some folks from various locations to support this divestiture,” Buchanan said. He also said that DLA Distribution, DLA Disposition Services and an Army mission control cell have combined their efforts to form a central turn in location on what had been an unused portion of the base.
“What’s great about having a mission control cell is we have a direct link when we have a soldier, primarily young soldiers coming in turn in equipment, so that when they have issues with their documentation, instead of turning them away, we have an opportunity to walk over to the mission control cell and link them up with another soldier,” said Jason Middleton, chief of the DLA Distribution expeditionary team.
One of the soldiers in the control cell was Army Chief Warrant Officer 5 Deanna Paul. She stated that the team in the cell wants to make sure that all the items a Soldier shows up with gets turned in.
Buchanan said that the DLA team was supported by members of DLA Information Operations who were operating a Mobile Emergency Response Center that supported communications and allowed the two DLA entities go online to research trouble items that soldiers needed to remove from their units’ property books.
Soldiers brought in all types of property that was no longer required — tents, vehicles, excess tools and even generators. For example, one unit had 10 excess generators.
“We had a huge area in our motor pool just dedicated to generators we did not use,” said Army 1st Lt. John Walker of the 1st Armored Division. Walker explained the unit was not authorized to have the items anymore, “so this is a good opportunity to turn them all in in one shot.”
Army Col. Charles Masaracchia, the 1st Armored Division’s commander, described the event as “the only way we would be able to get rid of this equipment with the operational tempo we have in this brigade. There is no way underneath the normal system of requesting disposition, receiving [transportation] codes, and getting it shipped out that we would meet our time lines before we go back to the field.”