Action Line: Housing rumors
By Col. John T. Quintas, 48th Fighter Wing commander
/ Published December 30, 2011
ROYAL AIR FORCE LAKENHEATH, England --
It is going around that soon all E1-E4s with children will be REQUIRED to move into Lords Walk as soon as they arrive (no billeting, just straight into their house), and if they choose to live off base, they will not receive OHA. They may implement the same policy for E5s and E6s as well, and possibly people without kids. I just wanted to know if this is true or a rumor.
What you have described is basically true.
These are challenging times and I am constantly assessing existing policies to determine which are still prudent and which need to be changed to meet current conditions. One area that I have identified for potential Air Force savings is our Military Family Housing (MFH) occupancy rate.
The Air Force achieves maximum return on its MFH investment by keeping the occupancy rate high. My goal is to keep it above 98%. To meet this goal, I have authorized a mandatory housing assignment policy. Upon arrival, members that fall into a category where the occupancy rate is below the goal will be directed to move from lodging/temporary housing directly into MFH. This
assignment policy will apply to new arrivals to RAF Lakenheath, RAF Mildenhall, and RAF Feltwell.
Members will be assigned to the first available MFH unit. This will be the most contentious aspect of the policy, as I am well aware that there are varying levels of desirability for our different housing areas. But it is the fairest means of assigning the housing that our Air Force has invested in. Members will have the option to refuse a directed MFH assignment, but only after they agree to forgo their Overseas Housing Allowances. They will then be paying for their off-base residence completely out of pocket.
While I understand that this will take away some flexibility in choosing off-base housing for new arrivals, we all have a responsibility, in this fiscally tight environment, to do our part to reduce the cost to the United States of our military forces serving overseas. There are many great benefits to living in MFH and there are also plenty of opportunities to get out and experience the local culture. I welcome your questions and your feedback as we implement this policy.
Please feel free to contact Ms. Lani Waikiki, Capital Asset Manager, at 226-3183 or e-mail me directly through the Action Line.
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