On Friday morning senior Army officials on Fort Riley met to discuss the impacts of force draw down, and sequestration. Fort Riley Senior Commander Brigadier General Donald MacWillie says the fiscal environment has limited the post’s flexibility in discretionary spending, but he is certain Fort Riley will continue to be able to keep in fighting shape.
General MacWillie says every operation on post has been scrutinized to maximize efficiency. Training will be done towards mission specific objectives, and utilize the on post simulator facilities more than field time. General MacWillie stressed that actual field time would still be used to condition the fighting force, but time in the field would be cut down by using the strengths of simulator training.
During the meeting it was revealed that the 1st Army Division will see a %30 decrease in funding, and Fort Riley Garrison will see a 55% cut in operating funds. However, civilian furloughs are not a certainty as of this posting. General MacWillie says the post will know if the 2,700 civilian personnel will be forced to take over 175 hours of unpaid leave by the end of March.
General MacWillie says he’s been engaging the civilian workforce, soldiers, and their families to ensure transparency of what is currently transpiring with the fiscal environment. Leaders have been tasked to come up with a clear and simple policy if furloughs do take place to help facilitate worker’s plan for the future.
Irwin Army Community hospital will continue to operate, and especially critical 24/7 services will not be shut down by the impacts of sequestration. The new hospital construction has been protected, and will go into operation in the near future.
General MacWillie has also directed his staff to scrutinize current, and future contracts to ensure they are needed by Fort Riley. General MacWillie says such contracting is likely to be diminished in the near future.