News: First Individual Issue Facility opens
Story by Marti Gatlin
ALBANY, Ga. — Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany’s first Individual Issue Facility opened here, Feb. 1.
Staff conducted a grand opening of the Albany IIF, which featured remarks, a ribbon cutting, food and Marine Corps combat equipment displays. Personnel also provided equipment to their first customer, a Marine who will soon deploy overseas.
Located at Building 1351, Bay Door No. 8, the Albany IIF houses infantry combat equipment, special training allowance pool equipment and field protective masks, which are issued through the Consolidated Storage Program, Marine Corps Logistics Command, to deploying Marines and civilian-Marines.
Infantry combat equipment consists of individual body armor, load-bearing systems, uniform clothing items and an assortment of individual items designed to enhance the effectiveness of individual Marines in combat, according to Carolyn Wilder, project officer, CSP, Logistics Services Management Center, Marine Corps Logistics Command.
Special training allowance pool equipment is comprised of cold, hot and wet weather clothing, and equipment as well as other designated specialty clothing and equipment items. Field protective masks consist of the M40 or M50 gas masks.
Lt. Col. Daniel R. Sullivan, director, CSP, began the grand opening, which Marines, civilian-Marines, contractors and Albany Area Chamber of Commerce members attended to show support.
“We are commemorating the opening of our first Individual Issue Facility here in Albany,” Sullivan said. “This is the product of about three months of work. We are providing an option for the Marines to get their gear right here. Now that we have our own site set up, we can offer uninterrupted support to the warfighter here.”
Until the Albany IIF was established a few weeks ago, Marines and civilian-Marines were required to travel to Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, S.C., or Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., to acquire their individual equipment prior to their deployments. Alternatively, CSP East Coast facilities would ship equipment to deploying Albany personnel via various package delivery companies.
“We knew with the (operational) tempo increasing that we would need to get a bigger footprint down here so we made the determination we needed to go ahead and open up something that would support this base and this area,” Sullivan said. “We have an inventory of about 50 full sets of gear and we will continue to just reorder, as need be, based on the amount of people deploying. If we perceive there’s going to be more than that going out we will just ramp up our stocks here. We can also ensure proper fit of the equipment so they are well protected.”
Sullivan also thanked all the CSP folks who had a hand in opening the Albany IIF.
“People from the base also have helped us tremendously, giving us a facility to operate out of and have been very cooperative in helping us with all kinds of support to get this where it is today,” he said.
Considered a lights out facility, which means it is not operated 24 hours a day, seven days a week, four CSP staff provide personalized service for deploying Marines and civilian-Marines when notified by the Logistics Operations Center their services are needed, Wilder said.
Staff also takes care of turned in gear once personnel are finished with their deployments as well as stocks equipment, shows Marines and civilian-Marines how to put the gear together and runs day-to-day operations.
“It has helped out tremendously as far as time-wise versus waiting a long period of time to get the gear so they get what they need within 72 hours versus 14-21 days,” Wilder said. “We had to (ship) it maybe from Camp Lejeune, Camp Pendleton, (California, or) somewhere within the CSP enterprise and that was taking too long and causing problems for the Marines trying to get in theater on time like they are supposed to.
“(This has) helped to get them into theater a little bit faster and on time to make sure they make their movement date. We can accommodate both male and female Marines out this facility just as we would one of our larger facilities throughout the enterprise,” she said.
Albany IIF’s first customer, Cpl. Ghiemar DeGuzman, 25, from Jacksonville, Fla., described the process of picking up his equipment Feb. 1 as painless and easy.
“It is great because I do not have to go to Camp Lejeune to get my gear anymore,” the motor transport mechanic, said. “If I was to go get my gear from Camp Lejeune, have it sent here and it does not fit, I have to wait a few more weeks, may be a month before it gets replaced.
“If that one does not fit again I have to keep waiting. Since it is here I can try it on. If it does not fit I can just get a new one from where they have it stored here,” he said.