RANDOLPH AIR FORCE BASE, Texas –
Randolph Air Force Base had a perfect record of no delinquencies in collecting monies owed from Government Travel Card holders for card expenditures made during August of 2008, the first time in Randolph cardholder history.
The project officer for the collection effort at the 12th Comptroller Squadron described the challenges faced in attaining that first and what Team Randolph members did to reach it.
"We had almost $600,000 for August in GTC charges," said 2nd Lt. Craig Poirier, 12th Comptroller Squadron deputy flight commander and government travel card project officer. "The average at the other Air Education and Training Command bases is about $300,000 per month; we also have the most government travel card holders in AETC - 4,374 at Randolph AFB, TDY and deployed. The average on any AETC base is 2,800 cardholders. So it's a really difficult mission."
Lieutenant Poirier thanked his 90 unit agency program coordinators that cover 61 different units for getting the word out to Airmen to be timely in paying off their travel card balances last month.
"The key was strong communication between APCs and cardholders," the lieutenant added. "It's the first time in history we reached zero percent in delinquencies for the whole base."
He said other key players were unit supervisors and commanders, who encouraged Airmen to pay their balances off in a timely fashion.
"They take a lot of responsibility for making sure that cardholders pay their balances," he said. "And they play a strong role if I have an issue with a cardholder. They really take care of business."
Lieutenant Poirier also said the comptroller squadron publicizes quick ways to pay off card balances.
"You can pay by calling or visiting Bank of America locations, by using split disbursements on travel vouchers or by using myeasypayment.com," Lieutenant Poirier said.
Lieutenant Poirier said he had also been working hard during the last few months, updating e-mail distribution lists, keeping contact sheets up-to-date, and increasing phone and e-mail contact between himself and APC's, supervisors and commanders in the collection effort.
Another measure involved "guru SAVs," or pre-Operational Readiness Inspection staff assistance visits.
During those assistance visits, he checked AETC units to ensure their programs were operating within Air Force standards - and that cardholder contact lists were updated and delinquents were notified.
"I was able to answer a lot of questions they had," Lieutenant Poirier said, "about what do you do to clear delinquencies and how you notify cardholders and commanders about delinquencies."
Finally, Lieutenant Poirier also thanked "vigilant" cardholders who knew they had balances to pay and stayed aware of that fact.
Lieutenant Poirier's commander, 1st Lt. Cormick Wong, the 12th Comptroller Squadron's financial services flight commander, thanked Lieutenant Poirier, commanders and supervisors, APCs and cardholders for their collection efforts.
"We've come a long way," Lieutenant Wong said.