HomeNewsArticle Display

A-76 picks up where it left off before Katrina

KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- Keesler's A-76 process resumes Thursday with a tentative decision to split base operating support between a government organization and a private contractor. 

This is where the study left off prior to Hurricane Katrina. 

A-76 refers to the federal government's procedures for determining if the performance of certain government activities is more efficient and cost-effective if conducted by the government or private sector contractors. The decision is reached through the performance of cost comparison studies. 

"We are now at the point where we were in August 2005, when a tentative decision to proceed was given," said Brig. Gen. Paul Capasso, 81st Training Wing commander, at a town hall meeting Monday in Welch Auditorium. "The final decision could be made two to three months down the road, pending the outcome of the public review period and appeals process. 

"Before a final decision can be made, every appeal has to be addressed," he continued.
"It's important to let the A-76 process work because failure to move forward in obtaining a decision will only continue to negatively impact our manning levels," the general pointed out. 

The public review period starts today and lasts 30 days. 

If the final decision is made to proceed with A-76, the process of reorganizing the wing and implementing the new service provider's way of doing business could begin as early as next spring. 

"It's important that we let this process continue -- A-76 has been held over your heads since 1999," General Capasso said. "When civilian slots open here, people who normally would take a position won't even apply -- why would anyone accept a job if there was a possibility of losing it in just a few months? 

"You deserve to know what is going to happen," he continued. "You deserve a decision. We want to get normal operations back into your lives." 

Keesler announced its tentative decision on Aug. 18, 2005, starting the original 30-day public review period. A tentative cost comparison decision was determined in the base operating support services cost comparison, which affects about 330 civilian and 400 military jobs. 

The tentative decision for "Big BOS," which covers civil engineering, supply, services, weather station and certain mission support functions, is to award a contract to DynCorp at a cost of $280 million over 10 years, with $56 million in estimated savings. 

The tentative cost comparison decision for "Little BOS," which includes most communications functions, is to retain the functions in-house under the government's "most efficient organization" at a cost of $54 million, nearly $5 million less than a contractor bid. 

The tentative decisions were announced Aug. 18, 2005, and the process was placed on hold after Katrina struck the Mississippi Gulf Coast. During the past year, the Air Force conducted a full analysis and review of the storm's impact on Keesler related to the tentative A-76 decision. The resulting decision was to continue forward. 

Another town hall meeting is planned for affected Keesler personnel following the 30-day public review period. 

Public review documents are available at http://www.keesler.af.mil/.