Author Archive

Corps helps communities recover and rebuild

February 16th, 2012

Corps of Engineers Quality Assurance Inspector Steve Hart (left) discusses the private property debris removal operation with QA Supervisor Glen Locke (right) June 21 at a home site near the Joplin High School, which can be seen in the background.

According to recent information from the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), 2011 was a record year for weather/climate disasters, with the highest number of events exceeding $1 billion in damages since 1980. Last year there were three times more disaster declarations than in a normal year, including tornadoes and severe spring storms, significant flooding throughout much of the country, Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee.

This meant that it was also a year which tested the Corps’ disaster response capabilities, with personnel and teams responding to 22 events worldwide in 2011, the busiest year for the program since 2005, when Hurricanes Katrina and Rita struck the Gulf Coast. USACE spent approximately $1 billion on emergency operations this year.

In 2011, some 2,400 USACE personnel and 22 Planning and Response Teams (PRT) deployed in support of FEMA and the National Response Framework. Their missions included temporary power, debris removal, installation of concrete pads for temporary housing units, and temporary replacement of critical public facilities such as schools, health clinics and fire stations.

The districts in our Mississippi Valley Division and Northwest Division were also heavily engaged throughout most of the past year managing record high water levels along the Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, Red and Souris rivers, for a much longer duration than normal. Our flood risk reduction systems were operated at their maximum capacity, some for the first time ever. The systems performed as designed, and thousands of communities were spared. We are working now to make necessary repairs and restore these systems to their original operating capacities.

Whether operating in the aftermath of floodwaters, tornados, hurricanes or any other disaster, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is a vital part of the federal team helping communities recover and rebuild.

Civil Works, Emergency Response

Small businesses a vital part of the team

December 12th, 2011

Maj. Gen. Merdith W.B. (Bo) Temple addresses the audience at the 2011 SAME Small Business Conference in Washington, D.C.

Did you know that small businesses in the U.S. represent 99 percent of all employer firms, and employ about half of all private sector employees? Small businesses have generated 65 percent of the net new jobs over the past 17 years, and hire 43 percent of high tech workers, including scientists, engineers, computer programmers and others.

The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) understands the importance of small businesses. In Fiscal Year 2011, 42.5 percent of all USACE contract obligations were awarded to small businesses at a total value of $8.1 billion. I am very proud that our teams not only met but exceeded our assigned goals this year in every category, including awards to Small Disadvantaged, Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned, Women-Owned and HUBZone businesses.

Recently, Corps leaders and our hard-working acquisition professionals, as well as their counterparts from other Department of Defense (DOD) agencies, participated in the Society of Military Engineers’ annual Small Business Conference for DOD Engineering, Construction and Environmental Programs. This event and others like it offer small businesses vital information and training to prepare them to work with the government, while allowing us to learn how their companies can help the Corps serve the military and the Nation.

If you take a look back at what the Corps has accomplished over the past year, you will see clearly the importance of our small business and industry partners. After five years of intense effort, we met our commitments to deliver $11 billion of Base Realignment and Closure projects to our military customers and provide 100-year risk reduction to the citizens of New Orleans with the massive $14 billion Hurricane and Storm Damage Risk Reduction System. Our teams were on the ground this year helping communities recover from tornadoes and hurricanes and managing historic flooding throughout much of the country. Where the Corps has served our Nation, small businesses have played a vital role. The same is true overseas, where we are reaching out and working with local contractors in Europe, Asia and Afghanistan to build Host Nation Capacity.

It takes the whole team – USACE and our federal partners, state and local agencies, tribal nations, special interest groups, academia and industry – to deliver sustainable engineering solutions and the Small Business community is a very important part of our success.

Afghanistan, Civil Works, Contingency Operations, Contracting, Emergency Response, Gulf Coast Recovery, Iraq, Military Programs, Partnership, Small Business

Corps delivers on BRAC ’05 mission

November 1st, 2011

September marked the deadline for delivering projects in the Army Base Realignment and Closure 2005 (BRAC ‘05) plan. BRAC ’05, an $18 billion investment and the largest military construction program since World War II, provided an unprecedented one-time opportunity for reshaping how the Army trains, deploys, supplies and equips garrisons.

The Corps executed the facilities portion of Army BRAC ‘05, which includes 274 of 329 MILCON projects valued at $11 billion (The National Guard executed the remaining 55). These projects included everything from hospitals and four-star headquarters to training facilities and massive office complexes. Fulfilling our BRAC mission was a Corps-wide effort and thousands of our employees, in coordination with our contractors and military customers, were involved in designing and constructing sustainable, cost-effective facilities for our Armed Forces and they did so safely, on time and within budget.

Over the past six years, fiscal years 2006 – 2011, the US Army Corps of Engineers’ Military Construction programs have managed projects valued at $93 billion in support of the Army, Air Force, Defense Department, Overseas Contingency Operations, American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, BRAC and Energy Conservation Investment Program. The Corps was able to do this because we had the right people with the right capabilities, and we had the flexibility to adapt our acquisition and delivery methods.

The BRAC program has been a great learning experience for USACE, and we are now better postured to meet the challenges of future missions in this complex, resource-constrained environment. I am very proud that the Corps is Building Strong for the Army and the Nation.


The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Savannah District managed the design and construction of a $304M state-of-the-art headquarters facility for the Army Forces Command and Army Reserves Command at Fort Bragg, N.C.

Military Programs, Uncategorized