mccs in depthAaron Pylinski | Community Writer
What is the MCX doing to improve its inventory?
The biggest challenge with maintaining inventory is the extended shipping timeline. The typical amount of time it takes for merchandise to arrive by way of a cargo ship is 60-75 days. If an item is sent via FedEx, it could take up to 30 days to reach the installation.
MCCS Iwakuni recently invited and received a visit in early March from senior MCX Headquarters Merchandise and Replenishment executives who are responsible for most of our product ordering. We wanted them to see firsthand the challenges we have and for them to hear from a cross-section of members of the community.
The process of ordering and shipping merchandise is being evaluated to meet the current increase in demand for merchandise.
MCX is adding 1775, an economical brand of clothing options for teens and children so parents can purchase play clothes for their kids without breaking the bank. Additionally, seasonal children clothing items such as spring outfits, rain gear, swimwear, and winter outerwear will be available, too. The adult clothing line will be increased to include veteran owned and operated Grunt Style as well as Billabong, 5.11 Tactical, Vans, and Carhart.
MCX is also expanding their running shoe replenishment to include more brand options and increasing the number of popular shoe sizes.
The MCX is currently facilitating online ordering of the new Navy Type III uniforms until 2019 when they will have a full stock on the shelves. The new Navy Type III uniform is available in all male and female sizes to try on for fitting. Online ordering is available at the computer kiosk at Customer Service.
MCX conducted a walk through of every on-base housing option and is working with MCX Headquarters to tailor the inventory of furniture available here. This initiative will help to eliminate the lack of available furniture for on-base housing and provide more options in the future.
The MCX Headquarters announced that they are testing a satellite barracks pop-up store at 29 Palms that will have MCX items available to those living in the barracks. The store will have barracks room items such as: sheets, pillows, and towels available to servicemembers arriving at their new duty station. Once the idea makes it through the research phase, the concept will start to branch out to other installations including ours.
Is MCX going to improve? Yes. Is it going to continue to experience issues along the way? Yes, but every failure is an opportunity to learn. There will be growing pains, and as the MCX continues to engage with the community and streamline its operations, they will provide the community with a better selection and consistently have merchandise in stock.
Why are children 11 years of age or younger restricted from fitness centers unless they are participating in a program specifically for children in this age group, or are spectators in an organized event?
MCCS fitness centers are busier now more than ever, and Semper Fit staff make every effort to provide physical activity programs for patrons of all ages. Marine Corps Order 1700.29, Semper Fit Fitness and Health Promotion policy, provides policy about age restrictions and youth accessibility for our fitness centers.
To accommodate parents with young children, MCCS recently modified the child and youth fitness center accessibility rules to permit children under the age of 12 inside the basketball and racquetball courts under interactive parental or legal guardian supervision. Interactive supervision requires that parents or legal guardians not leave children unattended and only participate in activities that directly involve the child.
Why is the cost of the driver’s education program here more expensive than other places in the Pacific?
While the cost of driver’s education programs may differ from base to base, many factors were considered before establishing our price. The biggest factor is that MCCS must provide this activity as a direct operation in a remote location like Iwakuni, essentially running the program and managing all costs associated with it. Most of the other installations in Japan are in locations where they can contract the driver program, thereby reducing program expenses.
In determining the price here, factors such as the salary for the instructors, course material, vehicle fuel and maintenance expenses were all calculated. Despite the price disparity, MCCS will likely not break even in providing the program to the community.