Washington, DC – The Army stepped-up efforts to increase accountability over military personnel funding now includes annual requirement to re-certify troop housing allowances.
In a memorandum that came out August 16th, the acting assistant secretary of the Army for manpower affairs Raymond Horoho, stressed the need to make adjustments to funding accountability in order to prepare the Army for auditing of its financial statements in the fiscal year 2018. Two separate audits in years 2015 and 2016, identified a number of issues across Army business practices with a majority of those issues falling on military payroll.
Assistant Secretary’s Horoho memo directs personnel sections Army wide to perform two actions: one, to collect and upload all and any missing dependency documents into personnel systems, including marriage records, birth certificates, adoption certificates or death certificates; and to confirm their eligibility for a housing allowance annually, or when a soldier has a life event, such as marriage, birth of a child, or a divorce.
While the Army has made significant efforts in the past year to ensure all soldiers have the supporting documentation entered in their records, there is a noticeable trend amongst a considerable number of soldiers that failed to do so, even after repeated warnings.
Sources within Army G1 told USAWTFM that the Army is currently developing lists containing service members that have not yet submitted their supporting documentation. Once the August 16 memo is released in an Army message, the clock will start counting down for all soldiers in those lists. Specifically, soldiers will be notified, both through email and their personnel sections, that they need to submit the missing documents.
Once the 60 days lapse and the service member has failed to provide the supporting documentation, the Army will automatically reduce their housing allowance. Once reduced, the service member will have 90 more days to provide the documents, along with a new DA Form 5960 signed by their company commander, to get their allowance set to the correct rate.
In the event that the 90 days pass without the issue being corrected, the service member will be referred to CID for investigation under suspicion of BAH fraud.
The Army, sources continued, is not intending to reduce the BAH of deployed Soldiers even if they are missing documentation, however they will fall under the same grace period of 60 and 90 days upon their return to their duty station.
An ALARACT message that will provide implementation guidance is expected to be released within the next 60 days.