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Team effort helps close fiscal year

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Demond McGhee
  • 18th Wing Public Affairs

Master labor contractors and U.S. Airmen from the 18th Comptroller Squadron and the 18th Contracting Squadron worked overtime to successfully close out the fiscal year budget by funding as many requests as possible before their midnight deadline.

 “The fiscal year runs from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30,” said Senior Airman Jared Roderick, 18th CONS contract specialist. “Funding is appropriated annually by [the U.S.] Congress and then disseminated to the wing commander to be used by the base.”

A budget may not always be appropriated by the beginning of the next fiscal year, which can lead to uncertainty and stress on units to request supplies before the year closes out. As a result, contracting and finance personnel work until the deadline of the fiscal year to ensure every request can be met as funds are made available. 

“It really is a wing effort,” said U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Shane Malone, 18th CPTS financial analysis flight chief. “We prepare the documents, contracting reviews them, our MLCS use their experience to help and then it goes to the group and squadron resource advisors.”

Requests, which can be for supplies or equipment, are funded as money is received by 18th CONS members before they are sent to unit representatives for purchases. However, if a stage in the process fails, then the money can’t be awarded to the unit and ultimately is reallocated back to the U.S. Air Force.

“The important part is being ready,” Malone said. “We may not expect funding but if it comes before the deadline then the unit needs to be ready to proceed with purchasing or we move to the next person in need of the money.”

Requests aren’t always must-haves but can include things that help operations run smoother. These can include anything from all-terrain vehicles to laptops, and even include latrines.

“The end of the fiscal year is about giving just as much attention to the seemingly mundane as you do the critical operations,” Roderick said. “The whole thing is supporting the warfighter, whether it’s fixing jets or making sure people have latrines to keep operations moving.”

U.S. Air Force Col. Ronald D. Schochenmaier, 18th Wing vice commander, recognized the significance of the squadron's effort to support the wing and visited them during their late-night operations.

“We all play a role in generating airpower,” Schochenmaier said. “No matter how far we sit from the cockpit.”