An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

HomeNewsArticle Display

Team V gets answers

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- You have questions, they have answers. Team Vandenberg members asked Col. David Buck, the 30th Space Wing commander, questions at his recent Commander's Calls. The experts have researched answers and provided answers below.

1. OPR - 30 MSG

Question/Concern -
School Bus Stop - Schools started on Wednesday, August 20th and the published bus schedule for Vandenberg Middle School (VMS) only indicates a single bus stop at the Base Chapel. The concern is the amount of students (150-200) that will have to gather at a single location as well as the distances the children have to walk across base.

Answer -
Commencing this school year, the Lompoc Unified School District (LUSD) assumed responsibility for busing of all LUSD students to include those on Vandenberg AFB. The on-going construction in the Military Family housing area has temporarily limited access to some areas causing rerouting of traffic and changing of normal bus routes. Initially, LUSD established a single bus stop location to transport students of middle school age. During the first week of classes, school district liaisons worked with LUSD to establish three additional bus stop locations in addition to the main stop at the chapel. Initial monitoring indicates the four bus stops meet current needs. We will continue to monitor the established locations and work with the LUSD to provide safe collection of our students. If you have any questions or concerns the POC for coordination with the LUSD is Mr. Duane Wolfe at 606-4604 or Mr. Jamie Lopez at 606-0039.

2. OPR - 30 SW/IG

Question/Concern -
Exercises on VAFB - It seems like we exercise deployment lines one way, but do things real-world in another way. Why can't we exercise the same way we do real-world operations?

Answer -
It is important to understand that we were able to convince AFSPC/IG to observe a real-world PDF which they will during our inspection. AFSPC/IG has also indicated that after real-world processing, they will ask the team questions and provide scenarios to PDF personnel to further evaluate the PDF on actions they didn't see during the processing. After reviewing previous ORI Phase I reports and sending teams to other bases to observe their ORI Phase I inspections, we know AFSPC/IG will evaluate PDF actions as they relate to evacuations/security of the PDF, conscientious objectors, incomplete paperwork, missing shots, etc. In order to prepare, our SW/IG scripted exercises to practice these types of events. It is not inconceivable for AFSPC/IG to not only observe the real-world PDF but to also evaluate another PDF during our 14-26 Sep ORI. With the recent addition of no-notice focused inspections and 30-60 day notice ORI Phase I, II and CIs by AFSPC/IG, we must maintain our readiness and be prepared at all times. These exercises help us remain ready not only for real-world actions but inspections and evaluations as well.

3. OPR - 30 SW/JA & PA

Question/Concern -
Point Sal Agreement - Regarding quality of life issues, can you explain the agreement the base has concerning access to Point Sal Beach State Park?


Answer -
"The beach at Point Sal is a state park, but to get to the beach people must cross through base and personal property from the North, over Brown Road. Other than visits for official purposes, all access to Brown Road and Pt Sal State Beach, even for Team V members, begins off-base in Guadalupe, and individuals should not attempt to access the area from the base side. There are times when Brown Road must be closed to ensure public safety, base security, or mission success. There is a temporary Memorandum of Understanding between the 30th Space Wing and Santa Barbara County that lays out the reasons and processes for closing the road, and the parties are working toward a permanent agreement. In order to provide timely information, the 30 SW/CC has charged Public Affairs with advertising the status of the beach access on the Vandenberg webpage (from which one can also read the MOU described above)."

In addition, the state park website, http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=605, has a link to the Vandenberg AFB website on the left side of the page. At the top of the Point Sal page they also discuss access issues.

4. OPR - 30 SW/JA

Question/Concern
-
Protestors - There have been a number of protests recently and, at times, the base provides "support" to the protestors by placing portable toilets, etc. What support does the base have to give to people who decide they want to protest?

Answer -
Your best resource for the most current information on the management of protestors and protesting is the Protest Advisory available on the public Vandenberg website:

http://www.vandenberg.af.mil/library/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=4562  

Pursuant to that advisory, 44 parking spaces are available for parking at VMS for scheduled weekend peaceful protests. No other services or support are promised under current command policy, though the 30 SW/CC has discretion to provide necessary support to best manage the situation. The management of activities not clearly addressed within this Protest Advisory are at the discretion and order of the installation commander. The over-riding caveat, however, is that the Protest Advisory can change at any time since VAFB is a closed base, and non-military and non-DoD personnel are not permitted to enter the installation without express permission of the installation commander or his designee. Currently, the command policy is to usually permit scheduled weekend peaceful protests for those not currently barred from the installation.

5. OPR - 30 SW/SE

Question/Concern -
Motorcycle Courses on Base - There is currently a basic MSF course taught on base. Can we get an advanced riders course scheduled on base?

Answer -
There are no motorcycle rider courses taught on Vandenberg AFB. Central Coast Motorcycle Training handles all of the Basic Rider and Experienced Rider Courses for the base, they run 2 ranges, one is in Santa Maria and the other is in Paso Robles.

The basic riders course is taught year round and the experienced riders course is taught in the Fall and Spring. When Central Coast Motorcycle Training opens an experienced riders course in the Spring and Fall they provide the Safety office with a list of the dates and times. The experienced riders course does not have high demand, so that is why they only offer the course in the Fall and Spring.

We don't have an on base program because past experience has demonstrated it is costly to maintain the equipment, keep the required paperwork with California DMV, and schedule instructors. Just keeping a qualified and ready pool of instructors is extremely difficult. If you have additional questions, feel free to contact 30 SW/SEG at 606-8804.

6. OPR - 30 SW/SFS

Question/Concern -
VAFB Hunting with Handguns - The state of California allows hunting with handguns but VAFB does not. Can that be changed?

Answer -
Although the State of California allows hunters to use handguns, Vandenberg AFB does not. Security Forces does not support individuals carrying weapons that can be easily concealed. Hunting on Vandenberg can still be enjoyed by using bows, shotguns and rifles. Any further questions can be directed to the 30 SFS Conservation Law Enforcement Office at 606-6804.

7. OPR - 30 CES

Question/Concern -
BBC Responsibility - There have been a number of changes in the housing area that include the addition of crosswalks and signage. What responsibility does Balfour Beatty Communities have in regards to putting up street signs, putting in crosswalks and maintaining the streets? What responsibility does the 30 CE have in regards to the same?

Answer -
Currently, anything within the housing footprint is Balfour Beatty Communities' (BBC) responsibility to maintain. This includes crosswalks and street signs. Safety is a top priority for BBC and they continuously review the condition of existing street signage and crosswalks; in addition, they continuously evaluate the need for additional crosswalks/signage. Due to a recent evaluation, BBC will install new crosswalks at the intersection of Korina St and Ocean View Ave.

8. OPR - 30 CES

Question/Concern -
Bicycle Racks - More and more people are riding the Breeze Bus to the front gate and then continuing on bike to the office. The bus limits the amount of bicycles. Can we put bicycle lockers (completely encloses the bike to protect from the elements) near the visitor center to allow more personnel to ride the bus and utilize a bike?

Answer -
A standard bike rack was recently placed at the Visitor Center as a start to a larger plan. Bike lockers were already being assessed for placement at the Visitor Center based on earlier interest. The Security Forces Squadron, Wing Antiterrorism Office, and the Civil Engineer Squadron have discussed the matter of location and type to determine where and what kind of lockers would be most suitable. The Civil Engineer Squadron has researched various types available will purchase the lockers once the process to administer their use is finalized.

In addition, a larger analysis underway to assess bike use and routes on Vandenberg that would help to determine an overall bike plan. If base personnel would like to learn more about or participate in the development of the overall base bike plan, the point of contact is Mr. Tommy Kennedy, 30 CES, Base Planning, 606-1932.

9. OPR - 30 CES

Question/Concern -
Street Lights in Housing - The street lights in housing are always fixed prior to Halloween for the trick-or-treaters, but they seem to fail quickly afterwards. Can that be fixed? Also, the lights on Juniper Street are out and it is very dark at night. Can those be fixed?

Answer -
Balfour Beatty Communities (BBC) will be conducting an analysis of the street lighting during the month of September. They are anticipating approximately 60 burnt out bulbs to be replaced during this process. In addition, BBC is aware of the street lighting concerns along Juniper St. Unfortunately, many of these fixtures require more than just bulb replacement as critical elements of the actual fixture itself seem to be missing. They are currently working diligently to determine the extent of repairs required, order parts, and accomplish the work required to return these light to an operational status.

10. OPR - 30 CES

Question/Concern -
Lake Clean-up - I've asked several times over the past few years if the lakeshore at Punch Bowl and other lakes on base can be cleaned/cleared of overgrowth and debris. I've even offered to organize a crew and complete the job myself, but I've been told the environmental flight would not allow this. Can we find a way to get the lake areas cleaned?

Answer -
Funding options are being researched to accomplish area clearing. Clearance of vegetation anywhere on base generally requires completion of a work request (e.g. AF Form 332) that provides a clear project description. While the base lakes provide excellent opportunities for recreational access, the lakes also provide habitat for at least one endangered species protected by federal law. Any actions, such as clearing overgrowth, that could potentially affect protected species or their habitat, must be carefully considered and assessed by natural resources staff to ensure compliance with Federal law. A tactical approach to clearance of vegetation and debris is possible and is the recommended approach to enhancing recreational access at the lakes versus a proposal to clear all vegetation. Natural resources staff will carefully consider any such proposals to ensure recreational needs are balanced with natural resource protection.

11. OPR - 30 CES

Question/Concern -
Streetlight at Pine Canyon Road - When I enter the base through the Lompoc Gate and come to the first light on Pine Canyon Road, it takes a very long time to change. Can we change the timing, add a sensor, or check the sensor if one already exists?

Answer -
30 CES is evaluating the existing programming of the sensor in an effort to reduce wait times. The sensor has been cleaned and that has not corrected the situation. Your continued patience is appreciated while they work to correct this issue.

12. OPR - 30 FSS

Question/Concern -
Fitness Center Hours - The fitness center closes at 1800hrs on Saturday and Sunday. Can those hours be extended?

Answer -
The Fitness Center has conducted surveys in the past to see if opening earlier or staying open later would better serve our customers. These surveys did not indicate that opening earlier or staying open later would be supported by our customer base. However, 30 FSS is constantly reassessing our customer needs. The Fitness Center is putting together a survey to get feedback on the Fitness Center Hours and Programs, so look for a link to take the survey in future 30 FSS Services E-vents email announcements or go to www.30FSS.com website soon!

13. OPR - 30 FSS

Question/Concern -
Auto Hobby Shop Hours - Can the hours at the shop be extended so it will be open earlier in the day?

Answer -
The Auto Hobby Shop recently adjusted its hours based on usage during certain time periods. In the past, it was open earlier in the day but patron usage wasn't sufficient to cover operational expenses. As a NAF Category B activity, the Auto Hobby Shop is obligated to maintain break even revenue. Therefore, it was necessary for to change operating hours to balance operating cost with patron peak usage. The shop now opens later in the day to allow customers to work on their vehicles after their duty day and on the weekends.

14. OPR - 30 FSS

Question/Concern -
Cross-fit Funding - There is a fitness program being started on base called Cross-fit, but there is not enough equipment. Can some funding be used to purchase items such as rings, pull-up bars, etc for the program?

Answer -
The Fitness Center recently purchased $2K in equipment to support the Cross-fit Program such as kettle-bells, medicine balls, plyometric boxes, mats, dry erase board, and pull up bar. A platform for the power rack has also been ordered. While funding is limited, space is more of a limiting factor because items such as gymnastic rings, ropes suspended from the ceiling and other specific dedicated equipment required for this program take up a lot of space. When the new Fitness Center opens next year, it will free up space in the current Fitness Center. If demand from customers supports, that space could be used to house equipment for this program.

15. OPR - 30 SFS

Question/Concern -
Overnight Parking at the Visitor Center - Is there any way to allow for overnight parking at the visitor center for a certain period of time?

Answer -
Yes, there is overnight parking at the Visitor Center. In order to park overnight you must attain an overnight parking permit from the Visitor Center Monday-Friday, 0800-1600. You must show proof of current registration, insurance and place the parking permit in center of the vehicle's dashboard. All overnight vehicles will be parked in the back row, furthest away from the Visitor Center. Parking in the Visitor Center overnight and failing to obtain/display the parking permit will result in your vehicle being towed at your own expense. Questions may be referred to the Visitor Center staff at 606-7099.