OEA continues to assist communities, both large and small, with adapting to Defense program changes. Communities benefit from decades of OEA knowledge and community best practices, allowing them to leverage state and federal resources to proactively and positively change their individual community.
Each project highlight story below showcases a challenge the community is facing and how this community, with OEA support, is working to solve it.
About Mission Growth
Communities oftentimes will see an increase in both military activity and community population as a result of the BRAC process and growth of the military. OEA can help communities and military installations to recognize how these increases in population and military activity can possibly place strains on community services, infrastructure, and facilities. While posing these challenges, growth of military installations also can create more jobs, a growing economy, diverse population, and a better quality of life.
OEA is prepared to assist communities, and the larger region, with adjusting to these changes by establishing a growth management organization (GMO) and developing a growth management plan. The GMO, working with local business leaders, representatives from the local school district, community service providers, neighborhood organizations, and local elected officials, will be able to provide a comprehensive plan to ensure the community is adequately prepared for this transition. The planning process also supports members of the military and their families by addressing housing, health care, childcare, employment, family services, and recreation issues.
OEA provides technical and financial assistance to state and local governments that have been impacted by the rapid population growth from new or expanding missions at existing installations. With community leadership, community engagement, and a growth management plan, local communities and regions are able to positively adjust to the BRAC-related growth.
Growth Management Assistance
OEA provides technical and financial assistance designed to help communities assess their capacity to handle a large population, formulate an adjustment strategy, and implement plans to ensure the quality of life for arriving DoD personnel, dependents, and the local community.
In order to receive OEA financial assistance, communities must encounter:
|An increase of more than 2,000 direct military, civilian, and contractor DoD personnel (i.e., net additional);||OR||More military, civilian, and contractor personnel than the number equal to 10 percent of the number of persons employed in counties or independent municipalities within 15 miles of the installation, whichever is less;|
|Community impact planning assistance not available from federal, state, or local governments.|
Additionally, OEA must find that the affected community will experience direct and significantly adverse consequences based on the influx of military personnel and civilian counterparts that support them. To assist the community, OEA is able to provide a grant to the single State or local governmental entity that is sponsoring the growth management program.
Growth Management Organizations (GMOs) Information
Local officials should organize to respond to the anticipated growth by leveraging existing organizations or establishing an initial “ad hoc” Growth Management Organization comprised of public and private community leaders. The organization may form working committees to address issues like housing availability, utilities, services, and public education. This organization can make initial assessments of important community issues that need to be addressed in a more comprehensive context.
This organization may work with OEA to:
- Outline a strategic approach
- Formulate goals and objectives
- Identify and analyze community gaps
- Develop a public involvement process
- Develop a growth management strategy to address the relocation schedule
- Develop a fiscally sound capital improvements program
- Manage and monitor growth
Four outcomes expected from a successful growth management effort include:
- A positive, workable State and local governmental commitment to accommodate the growth
- A lasting partnership based on cooperation and sharing by all affected interests
- A determined consensus course of action, including an implementation strategy
- Follow through by all stakeholders so growth benefits the community
Throughout the growth process, the responsibility and composition of the growth management organization may change based on specific circumstances.
Growth Management Plan and Implementation
Community growth management begins the DoD’s decision to relocate personnel and their dependents to a new community. Communities, working through its Growth Management Organization and OEA, need to develop a plan for handling growth. No matter what the context, communities require a cooperative partnership between the military, local community stakeholders, and OEA to ensure the community develops the right strategies for the community.
Based off of the growth management plan, the implementation plan requires capital funding arrangements for a variety of transportation, water and sewer systems, schools, and housing projects.