Current, Future Changes Afoot At Gates

FORT LEE, Va. (April 15, 2010) – More changes are afoot at Fort Lee – this time to the schedule and number of gate guards.

The first change is a decrease of contract guards at most of the installation’s gates due to a recent Installation Management Command traffic study.

The traffic study cut the manning of the guards by a third, and Team Lee members may see an increase of traffic at each of the gates. The Route 36 entrance onto the Ordnance Campus has been shut down except in emergencies.

“Fort Lee members should expect an increase in delays entering the installation,” said Police Capt. John Roeleveld, Fort Lee’s provost marshal office training officer and contract representative. “We ask for people to be patient during this adjustment of in personnel.”

Another change community members will see is the style of uniforms as the guards revert back to Department of Army positions. This change is mandated by law.

“The waiver under which the Department of Army was allowed to utilize contract security guards following the events of 9/11 is coming to an end,” said Don Bradshaw, director for Plans, Training, Mobilization, Security and Emergency Services. “A systematic reduction of CSG for the entire Army began earlier this year. As the reduction continues, additional changes to gate operations will be required.”

A recent Army News Service story by IMCOM Public Affairs explained that congressional mandates and the expected loss of a waiver established after 9/11 that allowed the Department of Defense to contract security guard services at military installations will require the contract guards to be replaced by DA security guards and will result in the hiring of more than 3,000 guards across the Army.

Fort Lee is in the second group of installations making the switchover and will have the DA security guards in place mid-2011.

While there may be additional decreases in gate personnel at that point, PMO is dedicated toward ensuring Fort Lee members are able to get through the gates in a reasonable amount of time, said Roeleveld.

“If there are serious backups, another traffic study may be done to reevaluate the installation’s needs.”