(2) The process shall designate the installation or regional commander in charge of oversight of housing units as the deciding authority under the dispute resolution process.
(3) The Secretary concerned shall establish a standardized mechanism and forms by which a tenant of a housing unit may submit, through online or other means, a request for resolution of a landlord-tenant dispute through the dispute resolution process.
(4) The Secretary shall ensure that, in preparing a request described in paragraph (3), a tenant has access to advice and assistance from a military housing advocate employed by the military department concerned or a military legal assistance attorney under section 1044 of this title.
(5) The Secretary concerned shall minimize costs to tenants for participation in the dispute resolution process.
(6) The dispute resolution process shall require the installation or regional commander (as the case may be) to record each dispute in the complaint database established under section 2894a of this title.
(A) notify the tenant that the request has been received;
(B) transmit a copy of the request to the installation or regional commander (as the case may be), housing management office responsible for the housing unit, and the landlord of the housing unit; and
(C) if the request includes a request to withhold payments under subsection (e), initiate the process under such subsection.
(2) For purposes of conducting an assessment necessary to render a decision under the dispute resolution process, both the landlord and representatives of the installation housing management office may access the housing unit at a time and for a duration mutually agreed upon amongst the parties.
(3) Not later than seven business days after the date on which the request was received by the installation housing management office, such office shall complete an investigation that includes a physical inspection and transmit the results of the investigation to the installation or regional commander (as the case may be).
(4) Before making any decision with respect to a dispute under the dispute resolution process, the commander shall certify that the commander has solicited recommendations or information relating to the dispute from, at a minimum, the following persons:
(A) The chief of the installation housing management office.
(B) A representative of the landlord for the housing unit.
(C) The tenant submitting the request for dispute resolution.
(D) A qualified judge advocate or civilian attorney who is a Federal employee.
(E) If the dispute involves maintenance or another facilities-related matter, a civil engineer.
(5)(A) The commander shall make a decision with respect to a request under the dispute resolution process not later than 30 calendar days after the request was submitted.
(B) The commander may take longer than such 30-day period in limited circumstances as determined by the Secretary of Defense, but in no case shall such a decision be made more than 60 calendar days after the request was submitted.
(6) Except as provided in paragraph (5)(B), a final decision shall be transmitted to the tenant, landlord, and the installation or regional commander (as the case may be) not later than 30 calendar days after the request was submitted.
(7) The decision shall include instructions for distribution of any funds that were withheld under subsection (e) and such instructions for the landlord for further remediation as the commander considers necessary.
(8) The decision by the commander under this subsection shall be final.
(2) If the landlord does not remediate the issues before the end of the time period specified in the final decision in a manner consistent with the instructions contained in the decision, any amounts payable to the landlord for the housing unit shall be reduced by 10 percent for each period of five calendar days during which the issues remain unremediated.
(2) The amount allowed to be withheld under paragraph (1) shall be limited to amounts associated with the period during which—
(A) the landlord has not met maintenance guidelines and procedures established by the Department of Defense, either through contract or otherwise; or
(B) the housing unit is uninhabitable according to State and local law for the jurisdiction in which the housing unit is located.
(3) This subsection applies to the following:
(A) Any basic allowance for housing payable to the tenant (including for any dependents of the tenant in the tenant's household) under section 403 of title 37.
(B) All or part of any pay of a tenant subject to allotment as described in section 2882(c) of this title.
(2) The Secretary of Defense shall ensure that each lease entered into with a tenant for a housing unit clearly expresses, in a separate addendum, the dispute resolution procedures.