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February Commanders View

  • Published
  • By Col. Paul J. Hargrove
  • 146th Airlift Wing
I hope that everyone enjoyed the holidays and the much needed time off with family and friends. The Super Bowl has been decided and congratulations to the Baltimore Ravens for a hard fought victory.

There are two looming dates in March that will affect the 146th AW in respects to the federal budget. March 1st is the deadline for sequestration and may cause $500 billion to be taken from the Department of Defense budget. The impact to the 146th AW is to curtail temporary technicians, reduce temporary duty (TDYs), and only fly mission critical missions. All temporary technicians have been briefed on this situation and are aware of the impact to their employment. We have already cut TDY travel and canceled flying missions due to the approaching deadline. We had a Boss Lift set for February UTA, but had to postpone until the sequestration issue was resolved. Employers had been invited to the base to visit with their traditional employees and go on a C-130J local flight. We will reschedule this event as soon as possible. March 27th is the end of the Continuing Resolution for the federal budget and hopefully Congress passes a budget or another Continuing Resolution. Failure to act on this would cripple the Federal government until one of the options was passed. I will brief the impacts to our wing in an all hands meeting if this looks to become a reality.

The Operations Group will be finishing the Aircrew Standard Evaluation Visit (ASEV) later this month from 20 Feb to 27 Feb. They have moved their UTA to 23-24 Feb to accomplish the ASEV inspection. They will be inspected by a team of experts from AMC and receive a grade of how prepared they are to perform their missions. Remember to treat the inspectors with respect and all military courtesies while they are on base and present a professional image to them. We have been doing very well in past inspections and I'm sure the Operations Group will pass with flying colors. Good luck to them.

We just returned from the Savannah Combat Readiness Training Center on this past Thursday, 31 January. The 146th AW sent 47 personnel to augment Charlotte, perform Exercise Evaluation Team (EET) functions, and observe the 145th AW in their Operational Readiness Exercise (ORE). This was a good trip to get the rust off and refresh how the scenarios run in the OREs. Our next event is the Prepare the Troops (PTF) deployment exercise during the March 2013 UTA. We will process up to 350 personnel to deploy to war, but then pause until the April UTA to pick up the rest of the war phase of the ORE. This will be Channel Islands South, a home station ORE during the April UTA and may mirror the upcoming Operational Readiness Inspection (ORI). The Inspector General of Air Mobility Command is contemplating accomplishing home station ORIs in the future, but has not made this decision yet. We will find out our location in June and will then know if we will deploy to a CRTC or have the ORI at home. The location of the August ORE will depend upon what we learn in June. We recently learned that the 103rd AW from Connecticut will join with Charlotte and us for the ORI. We are working with them on how their involvement will take place, but I do understand that their Operations and Maintenance will not participate. More to follow as I get more information on the 103rd AWs involvement.

I was informed that our static display project has been denied by the USAF Museum and I'm looking for another way forward on this issue. The Board of Directors at the museum has decided that they have too many static displays around the country and are not approving anymore in the future. We have been offered a static display C-130E from both Illinois and Georgia, but we would have to pay the ground shipping cost of approximately $150,000. Obviously this is unacceptable, but I will continue to search for a static display that is cost effective.

We have several personnel deployed to the Middle East and I wish them well on their deployments, as well as a safe return. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers, as I'm sure you have done in the past. Take advantage of the upcoming months to get into the ORI mind set and get used to the Mission Oriented Protective Posture (MOPP) gear again. I will see you this drill around the base,

Take Care,
Paul Hargrove, Col
146th AW/CC