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News > Commander’s Direct Line: On-base housing
Commander’s Direct Line: On-base housing

Posted 2/28/2008   Updated 2/28/2008 Email story   Print story


2/28/2008 - FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash.  -- The following is a question to the 92 Air Refueling Wing Commander submitted by a member of Team Fairchild or the local community:

Why doesn't the military rent out empty housing on base to retired personnel? Wouldn't it be a source of income, the same that active duty personnel pay for their rank?

Thank for your question because it provides an opportunity to explain how Fairchild's military family housing will be changing when privatized this Spring.

On-base military family housing is intended to provide suitable housing for key and essential military personnel whose duties require them to reside on base and to supplement housing provided by the local community. Because the housing on base is a limited resource, AFI 32-6001 states, "Eligible members are those that are active duty, have PCS orders to Fairchild and are allowed to submit their application for housing to the gaining installation anytime after receiving their PCS orders. ANG and Reserve members provide active duty orders."

The local community is the primary resource for providing housing for military personnel. The vacant military family houses you see on base are vacant for one of two reasons: 1) the next family has not moved in yet or 2) the house was determined to be in excess the number required as determined by the most recent Housing Requirements and Market Analysis. The most recent HRMA determined Fairchild's requirement is 641 homes versus the more than 1320 homes existing. Most of the vacant homes you see will be demolished soon.

After privatization, whenever the vacancy rate exceeds five percent for specified periods of time, housing may be offered, in priority order, to active duty military members of other services, National Guard members, Reserve military members, federal civil service employees, retired military personnel and retired civil servants. Leases under these conditions will be for one year. This feature of the housing privatization agreement ensures the project owner will be able to maintain revenues throughout the 50 year period of the deal.

Regarding your point of collecting rent to be placed back into Fairchild, currently, rent is not collected from housing occupants, as base housing funding is provided by another source from Air Force, but members simply do not receive their normal, off-base housing allowance. With privatization, the housing allowance will be provided to the company with the lease.

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