MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. -- A private company, Atlantic Marine Corps Communities, is scheduled to take control of 63 percent of Camp Lejeune’s family housing inventory Oct. 1 in the first phase of the base’s move to privatize on-base housing through a Public-Private Venture partnership.
“Under a PPV arrangement, the ownership and management of on-base housing units will be turned over to a private company to improve living conditions and serve tenants better,” said Jerry Swain, director of Family Housing Division, Installation and Environmental Department, Marine Corps Base.
For many years, due to limited resources, an aging housing inventory and a backlog of maintenance and repairs, Family Housing around the Marine Corps has experienced difficulty in providing consistently high quality housing for servicemembers and their families, according to Mike Lane, director of personnel for Family Housing Division.
“Many of the houses here were built back in the ‘40s and ‘50s,” said Lane. “After 50 or 60 years of use, a lot of them need to be replaced and the rest need significant repairs.”
The goal of the 50-year partnership between the Marine Corps and AMCC is to provide service members with quality housing units and improved management, which have been lacking in past years, according to the Family Housing Division’s Web site, www.lejeune.usmc.mil/family_housing.
“What took us up to three years to accomplish could take them only six months,” said Lane. “It’s really going to improve the quality of life for those living here.”
In addition to constructing new units and repairing old ones, homes will be managed and operated by the private partner, while service members will sign a lease and follow basic State Landlord-Tenant laws, including the payment of rent and utilities based on the Bachelor Housing Allowance rate, according to the Web site.
Although the privatization has yet to take effect, progress is being made.
“We are presently working on the Operation, Maintenance and Management Plan and the Community Guidelines,” said Swain. “The Staff Judge Advocate has completed their review of the proposed lease and is slated to meet with Headquarter Marine Corps legal staff July 20. Once the lease has been completely reviewed and accepted by base officials, we'll begin to schedule town hall meetings for lease requirements.”
With the final phase of the PPV scheduled to begin in October of 2007, AMCC should take over all operations by the end of fiscal year 2008.
“Privatization of family housing at Camp Lejeune is ultimately going to provide servicemembers and their families with better housing units and more improved service,” added Swain.