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NEWS | May 15, 2018

Contracting Teams conduct training exercise at Fort Belvoir

By Maj. Jenny Hartsock | 329th Regional Support Group

Ten Virginia Guard Soldiers assigned to the Virginia Beach-based 1945th Contingency Contracting Team, 329th Regional Support Group conducted a multi-component operational contract support culminating training event May 1-11, 2018, at Fort Belvoir, Virginia.

“This exercise has offered a training environment which mimics a deployment scenario,” said Maj. Nate Seymour, team lead for the 1945th CCT. “Beyond that it has given us access to and input from units that have been down range allowing our less experienced Soldiers to take that knowledge and craft their required ADOS experience to better prepare them for the tasks we’ll handle when deployed.”

A contingency contracting team is a five-person unit that can provide capability to acquire goods and services from the commercial sector, stateside or overseas. Both the 1940th and the 1945th CCT were established in 2009.

The team comprised of officers and noncommissioned officers from the 1940th CCT includes Lt. Col. Matt D. Way, senior team lead, Capt. Eric G. Forcey, Master Sgt. Jack Hahne, Sgt. Kayla Modic, Sgt. Tina Jaurequi . The 1945th CCT includes Seymour, Maj. Richard Takacs, Capt. Shyra Cullins, Sgt. 1st Class Steve Slater and Staff Sgt. Ronald Duran.

The exercise conducted at Fort Belvoir integrated the U.S. Army Reserve Logistics Civil Augmentation Support Battalions, LOGCAP, and the Virginia Army National Guard contingency contracting teams in order to build readiness, establish unity of effort and increase proficiency in contingency contract administration services.

This unique exercise afforded the units the opportunity to train together prior to a deployment or mobilization where they frequently work together to provide life support and sustainment to contingency operations, Seymour said. The contracting teams were able to practice specific contracting administrative functions and documentation that are unique to LOGCAP contracts and conversely the LOGCAP battalions were able to practice their expertise in providing cost estimates, project proposals and management of complex life support contracts.

The exercise began its planning and coordination in December 2017. Various workshops were held throughout early 2018, culminating with the planning portion with a rehearsal of concept drill held mid-April. Based on the success of this event, it is planned that this will be used as an initial step toward an annual exercise open to additional contracting and life support units for training purposes.

The exercise evaluated the team to ensure that their contract support met operational needs and reduced risks to missions and forces, Seymour said. The exercise also evaluated the contractors to be sure they met contract requirements and that fraud, waste and abuse was prevented and costs were controlled. Finally, the exercise evaluated transparency and that the government property has an auditable trail.

“In my experience the CCTs are force multipliers in that they enable the formation to resource contract support for operations which allows Soldiers to focus on inherently military tasks,” said Col. K. Weedon Gallagher, commander of the 329th Regional Support Group. “CCTs are a vital component to the total go-to war force structure.”

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