By Tech. Sgt. Jaclyn Lyons
125th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (Sept. 23, 2014) — If you have ever watched as a building was renovated or newly constructed, or eagerly awaited your payday, then you have enjoyed the hard work put in by base contracting and finance Airmen.
Contracting has a role in just about every part of day-to-day operations in the Florida Air National Guard. As the office that approves and buys all commodities, services, and construction that is needed – the four Airmen that work in contracting stay busy. There is a lot of work that goes into each contract. There are many regulations on how to spend taxpayer money responsibly and be as environmentally friendly as possible.
“I don’t think people realize the sheer amount of study it takes just to do one acquisition- how many regulations you have to reference, how much legal guidance you have to get. Everything we do in the contracting office has to be able to be scrutinized in the legal system and stand up in a court of law,” said Master Sgt. Dawn Loyd, Base Contracting officer.
Interviewing contractors and being in charge of large-dollar projects takes a lot of coordination and organization along with a high standard of ethics that each Airman must possess. All contracting Airmen go through ethics training to ensure they are always being fair and responsible for the large sums of money and how they are spent.
Ethics and accountability are also key traits that every Airman who works in finance must have. Whether it’s military pay, travel, budget officer, or comptroller, each office within finance must work together seamlessly to ensure people are paid, supplies are purchased, and all money is properly accounted for. This becomes very important as the end of the fiscal year draws near and everything must be closed out.
It’s not always an easy process as Master Sgt. Daniel Morgan, Military Pay Supervisor, explained: “Accounting for every dollar, every cent, making sure it goes to the right place and the right people and be done right on time. On 30 September everything needs to be done, if we have to stay late or come in on the weekends we do what we have to do.”
Both contracting and finance are responsible for the 125th Fighter Wing and all geographically separated units that make up the Florida Air National Guard. In career fields where everything is highly scrutinized and subject to legal review at any time- these Airmen embrace the core values and provide a necessary service. So the next time you use the equipment at the base gym or see travel pay deposited into your account- take a minute to appreciate how it got there.