Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Florida Politics

Charlie Crist Wants Military Base Commanders to Have More Power When Dealing With On-Base Housing

Even as dozens of families are reporting mold and other issues in private housing at MacDill Air Force Base, U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, D-Fla., wants to make sure it doesn’t happen again. 

Share Story Via Text, E-Mail, Facebook or Twitter

Even as dozens of families are reporting mold and other issues in private housing at MacDill Air Force Base, U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, D-Fla., wants to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

Last week, Crist introduced a bill to “empower military base commanders to hold private companies managing on-base military housing accountable for the health and safety of servicemembers and their families” and he pointed to the problems at MacDill.

“It’s shocking and unacceptable that our servicemembers and their families are being trapped in living situations that put their health and safety at risk,” said Crist. “Part of the issue stems from base commanders not having the authority necessary to police bad actors, holding private companies accountable for living conditions in the on-base housing they oversee. I think we can put a stop to these situations quickly by giving commanders the authority needed to protect their people.”

Crist’s bill “would empower the commander of a military installation to take corrective action if a company fails to effectively operate and maintain a leased house, including by withholding payments to housing contractors; requiring companies to reimburse tenants for private property damaged because of inadequate housing conditions; requiring companies to pay moving expenses of families who are forced to vacate a property because it is unlivable.

“For current housing contracts, the Crist legislation would allow military personnel to utilize the chain of command for reprieve from an abusive private housing landlord, officially extending whistleblower protections to protect them from any potential retribution. The current process requires military personnel to file a case with the Office of the Inspector General, which does not bring relief on individual cases, because the IG examines military housing on a Defense Department-wide basis,” the congressman’s office noted.

See also  Rick Scott Doubles Down on Call for Audit of FBI, Secret Service After Assassination Attempt on Trump

“It’s pretty simple – empower local base leadership to fix the problem, and give our soldiers and their families a clear voice in the process. I can’t believe things have gotten to the point that servicemembers have had to quit the military to protect their families, but Congress has the power to put a stop to it – and we need to act without delay,” said Crist.

Crist’s bill was sent to the U.S. House Armed Services Committee last week. So far, there is no Senate version and there are no cosponsors in the House. But the Tampa Bay congressman might find some allies over in the Senate including in U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., who defeated Crist back in the 2010 Senate race.

Last week, Rubio wrote Assistant Air Force Secretary for Installations, Environment and Energy John Henderson on the matter.

Last month, U.S. Sen. Rick Scott, R-Fla., met with U.S. Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson on the matter and followed up with her in a letter.

Author

  • Florida Daily

    Florida Daily offers news, insights and analysis as we cover the most important issues in the state, from education, to business and politics.

    View all posts
Share Story Via Text, E-Mail, Facebook or Twitter

Follow Us on Social Media

Ed Dean: Publisher

 

Ed Dean is a leading radio and news media personality including hosting the #1 statewide radio talk show in Florida. Contact Ed.Dean@FloridaDaily.com

Article Archives

Related Stories

Most Recent

Earlier today, Florida Senator Rick Scott (R) reiterated his call for the Biden-Harris administration, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), United States Secret Service (USSS),...

Foreign Affairs

Florida Senator Marco Rubio (R), who serves as Vice Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, joined Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Ranking Member of...

Healthcare

Florida Senator Rick Scott (R) joined fellow Florida Senator Marco Rubio (R, Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) and 17 of their colleagues in urging Department...

Attorney General Ashley Moody

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready... Florida Attorney General (AG) Ashley Moody and Florida U.S. Senator Rick Scott met with a group of seniors...

Economy

Earlier today, Florida Senator Rick Scott announced a package of three finance-focused bills to hold Communist China accountable and safeguard American investors. “Communist China...

Most Recent

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready... Earlier today, Florida junior US Senator Rick Scott released a weekly update on his actions to address America’s...

Immigration

Florida Sen. Rick Scott joined Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul to request a hearing regarding the threat of terrorism along the southern border with Mexico....

Elections

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready... Results from a poll recently conducted by the University of North Florida (UNF) show the state’s junior U.S....