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MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan — A number of customer service-based agencies at Misawa are closing once a month for training.

For some of those organizations, the reduction in personnel across the U.S. Air Force is prompting the closure.

Military Personnel Flight “training requirements have increased because of the drawdown in manning,” Maj. Leonardus Eason, 35th Military Personnel Flight commander, said in a written response.

Military Personnel Flight is one of the agencies that will close the last Thursday of the month. Other agencies closing on the same day are the Housing Office, Transportation Management Office, Bay Area Travel, Pass and ID, Education Office, Civilian Personnel, Airmen and Family Readiness Center, and the Human Resources Office.

The agencies will be closed Thursday, Oct. 25, but will still provide emergency services, according to base officials.

“Anything that the member could have taken care of prior to the training day, but waited to do so, does not constitute an emergency,” Eason said, adding that each situation will be handled on a case-by-case basis. If an airmen needs assistance for temporary duty or emergency leave, MPF will help them, even on training days.

In the past, MPF conducted training when needed or during after-duty hours, Eason said. But now, 90 percent of the MPF staff is in some type of upgrade training, and closing for the day allows on-the-job training in a group setting, he said.

Closing on the same day once a month also provides more stability and predictability, according to Eason.

When asked if there were any Air Force guidelines dictating how many hours military organizations could close for training, Eason wrote that customer service is the only section in MPF needing prior wing commander approval to close.

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Jennifer reports on the U.S. military from Kaiserslautern, Germany, where she writes about the Air Force, Army and DODEA schools. She’s had previous assignments for Stars and Stripes in Japan, reporting from Yokota and Misawa air bases. Before Stripes, she worked for daily newspapers in Wyoming and Colorado. She’s a graduate of the College of William and Mary in Virginia.

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