eGov/Mil Newsletter: December 5, 2014
In this Issue:
- CIP/COR Message Issued
- Personal Property Forum Highlights
- System Response Center and the Customer Satisfaction Survey
- Congress Agrees to Troop Pay, BAH Cuts in Budget Compromise
- News from the Daycos Weblog
- DOD & Government Personal Property News & Notes
- Ashton Carter to be Nominated as Next Defense Secretary
- Military Installation Access Survey
Editor’s Note: This following item was posted in the IAM Social Café on Dec. 1.
The Surface Deployment and Distribution Command (SDDC) originally sent a message to industry regarding the need to update the Certificate of Independent Pricing (CIP and Certificate of Responsibility (COR) on Nov. 26 but due to message distribution errors associated with the Defense Personal Property System (DPS), the original message never reached its intended targets.
SDDC was forced to reissue the message on Dec. 2 directly from one of the SDDC staffer’s work email addresses.
This ongoing message distribution problem has raised serious concerns within the DOD household industry and IAM has raised those concerns to the highest levels within SDDC and U.S. Transportation Command (USTC).
Be sure to check the IAM Social Café regularly for the latest DOD/Government news.
SDDC issued the following announcement on Wednesday November 26. This is a critically important announcement that contains two requirements that ALL DOD Transportation Service Providers (TSP) must heed!!!
1) TSPs must update their Certificate of Independent Pricing (CIP) and Certificate of Responsibility (COR) no later than January 12, 2015 or they will not be able to file rates for the 2015 Annual Cycle.
2) TSPs must ensure that their insurance and bonds are updated in DPS no later than January 1, 2015. Failure to do so will result in their insurance and bonds in DPS receiving DPS rejection notices and this may result in punitive action from SDDC.”
SDDC-PP Advisory 15-0012
DATE: 26 NOVEMBER 2014
FROM: SDDC-PP SCOTT AFB, IL
TO: DOD-APPROVED PERSONAL PROPERTY TRANSPORTATION SERVICE PROVIDERS (TSP)
SUBJ: ANNUAL QUALIFICATIONS CERTIFICATE OF INDEPENDENT PRICING AND CERTIFICATE OF RESPONSIBILITY REVIEW
1. It is mandatory that all Transportation Service Providers (TSPs) update their Certificate of Responsibility (COR) and Certificate of Independent Pricing (CIP) in the Defense Personal Property System (DPS) before the 2015 rate cycle. Updates can be made starting Dec 2, 2014 and MUST be completed by Jan 12, 2015.
2. Request all TSPs go into DPS to review, update and submit CIP/COR documents for approval. Once completed, you must ensure the documents are in “UNDER REVIEW” status and not in “IN PROGRESS” or “SUBMITTED” status. ONLY the President or CEO can certify and submit the CIP/COR documents.
3. Failure to update your qualification documents will preclude you from filing rates. Questions may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
4. Please note SDDC will no longer be providing telephonic reminders for the CIP/COR and other qualification documents.
5. Reminder, effective Jan 1, 2015 all TSPs who have not updated their insurance and bonds in DPS will receive DPS rejection notices. Failure to respond will result in punitive actions.
6. This message is approved for release by David Jones, Lead, Quality Assurance Team, HQ SDDC.
Source: IAM & SDDC
The Surface Deployment and Distribution Command (SDDC) held their fall Personal Property Forum (PPF) at the Four Point Sheraton in Fairview Heights, IL on Nov. 18. The following are some of the major takeaways from the meeting:
Opening comments were provided by Mr William Budden, Deputy to the Commander at SDDC. He commented on the future of DOD budgets and Force Structure. Current troop levels within the Army are at approximately 505,000 and could possibly go to as low as 420,000 by 2017. If DOD receives some relief from the current sequestration budget mandates those levels could only go as far as 450,000.
The Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps are also facing reductions but not nearly as dramatic as those facing the Army.
The reduction will most likely have a positive effect on the personal property/permanent change of station (PCS) environment, at least in the short term. Along with the regular rotations and PCS movements, all troops either separating or retiring from service will also be moving. This should make for a positive business environment with the DOD household moving industry for the next few years. But when the dust settles a reduction in troops will eventually mean a reduction in the number of moves within DOD.
Mr Budden also commented on the frustration that the Command has faced over the last several months when it came to problems associated with the ETA, DPS and some of the invoicing/payment challenges that industry has faced. He promised that these issues have visibility at the highest levels of SDDC and USTC and every effort was being made to correct these inefficiencies.
Following Mr Budden’s opening comments, Capt. Aaron Stanley, SDDC Personal Property Director, took the stage. He addressed the ongoing effort within SDDC and the Personal Property Directorate in particular to drive greater efficiency. The Directorate is involved in a “business process mapping” initiative and he indicated that 85 individual processes had already been identified and mapped. The effort is planned to be completed in the summer of 2015 and the goal is to bring better processes to bear in the personal property arena and discard the unnecessary ones.
Other Discussion Topics
Open Season – SDDC is hoping to have an open season in 2015. Right now they are not entirely sure what that will look like. They are exploring intrastate, international and interstate options in that order and requalification is a consideration as well. The takeaway was that SDDC will most likely have an open season focused on the intrastate arena in 2015. No details are available at this time.
Personal Property Staffing – SDDC has undergone some staff reorganization and a 25% reduction in 2014. Some further reorganization may occur in the future.
One key addition to the staff will be Danny Martinez. Indications are that Danny will return to the Personal Property Directorate as a Division Chief in January. One key loss is John Becker, Rates Team Lead. While John has not been totally lost from the Directorate, his focus will move to a group within SDDC that is examining where SDDC has duplications in processes across its different business lines in the hopes of finding where the Command can rid itself of duplication while build efficiencies and cutting costs.
Alcohol in International Shipments – This has been a growing issue over the last year. The focus has been on who is responsible for an extra customs clearance charges that may result from the need to obtain an alcohol customs broker to clear these shipments. Some within SDDC have shifted the responsibility to the TSPs where in the past the responsibility has been with the transferee.
A Joint Services Team has been established to review this issue and a final outcome could come as soon as January.
Base Access – This is a critical issue for not only the personal property arena but for anyone trying to access a military installation. Departments within the Office of the Secretary of State have put together a group to try and standardize access to military installations. It appears that the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) will become a universally accepted credential to access a DOD installation. All of the military services will convene a meeting in January, where it is hoped this initiative will be ratified.
This does not mean that each of the Services would not have the ability to continue to use other commercial credentials like RAPIDGate. But, if ratified, it does mean that a TWIC card would also be accepted no matter what other credentials may also be in use by a Service.
DPS – DPS development schedule is behind expectations. Many proposed system enhancements have been moved to the right.
- The new Rate Filing Module previously scheduled for a Dec. 19 release will now move into production sometime in early January. Many in industry view this with great trepidation since the 2015 DP3 Rate Filing is tentatively scheduled to begin Feb. 1.
- Software Change Request (SCR 6975) – This change is designed to provide the Personal Property Shipping Offices (PPSO) the capability to have refused shipments moved to the next eligible TSP without any action from them. However, the implementation is questionable before the 2015 peak season.
- Numerous DPS problems. BVS Scoring issues, numerous unplanned releases to compensate for poor software quality from the previous developer in DPS Release 1.6, and a need for a large number of enhancements to maintain security accreditation, among other things, have made the FY15 plan unachievable.
Bond requirements – SDDC indicated that they will begin to enforce the Qualifications Document (Pam 55-4) bond requirements, which state:
The bond requirement for the international program is a minimum of $150,000 or 2.5% of previous-year international DOD revenue, whichever is greater. The 2.5% requirement will be reviewed and adjustments made during the annual policy renewal.
The bond requirement for the domestic interstate program is a minimum of $50,000 or 2.5% of previous-year DOD domestic interstate revenue, whichever is greater. The 2.5% requirement will be reviewed and adjustments made during the annual policy renewal.
SDDC indicated they will complete a review and alert TSPs that need to comply with the 2.5 percent requirement versus the standard minimum requirements.
Key Action Items indentified at the end of the PPF:
- Correct the DPS message distribution problems
- SDDC review the current NTS Phase III business rules before a move to begin full development with DPS
- Provide TSP training for the new rate filing module
- Review rules on invoicing for shipments delivering out of SIT where no approved facility is within 100 miles of Block 18 on the GBL
- Provide clarification on the correct click count rules for the DPS short fuse queue
- Consider equalizing the minimum weight rules in the domestic and international households markets
- SDDC will provide monthly shipment data year round.
Almost 300 industry and government personnel attended the PPF. Most seemed to consider the meeting positive and a great deal of dialog and ideas were exchanged. The key factor that will determine the true success or failure of the meeting will be the follow through on the 30-plus action items coming out of the meeting.
Source: IAM & SDDC
It has been more than six months since the encrypted link to the Customer Satisfaction Survey (CSS) was removed from the emails sent to military transferees at numerous intervals after the final delivery of their household goods shipment. Since that time the number of surveys completed verbally through the System Response Center (SRC)/Helpdesk process has increased dramatically.
In the last few weeks that process seems to have been stymied. Long wait times trying to connect with the SRC have caused many military members to give up on the process.
At this point it is unclear if problems accessing DPS, manpower shifts at the SRC or a change in the mentality regarding taking the inbound calls to complete the survey are the impetus behind these long wait times.
Most agree that a disruption in this process would lead to a significant reduction in the number of surveys completed. That would surely lead to an increase in the number of TSPs that would not reach CSS statistical validity levels and would dig at the core of the DP3 Best Value model.
IAM has reached out to the key decision makers within the SDDC Personal Property Directorate and the SRC to try and forge a way ahead that would be beneficial for all stakeholders.
Congress Agrees to Troop Pay, BAH Cuts in Budget Compromise
Service members next year will be paying more for prescriptions bought off base, getting less of a housing subsidy and a picking up a smaller pay raise under an agreement reached between Senate and House lawmakers.
The deal between the Senate and House armed services committees on the 2015 National Defense Authorization Act is bound to draw criticism from military associations and veterans' service groups, which lobby Congress on behalf of service members' pay and benefits.
News from the Daycos Weblog
Invoices Moving into DPS Again
Last week we alerted readers to a delay in invoices transmitting from the Third Party Payment System (TPPS), Syncada into DPS for approval. We received word at that time that the technical issue had been resolved, but yet we still did not see the invoices moving into DPS as we had hoped to. Through continued efforts of the DPS PMO, the technical issue was resolved earlier this week and the nod was given to resend invoices from Syncada to DPS for processing.
Financial Responsibility for Motor Carriers, Freight Forwarders, and Brokers
FMCSA announced that it is considering a rule that would increase the minimum levels of financial responsibility for motor carriers, including liability coverage for bodily injury or property damage; establish financial responsibility requirements for passenger carrier brokers; implement financial responsibility requirements for brokers and freight forwarder;, and revise existing rules concerning self-insurance and trip insurance. FMCSA seeks public comments on these topics.
Currently household goods motor carriers are required to have a minimum insurance level of $750,000 and household goods brokers and freight forwarders are required to be secured at $75,000.
The agency will accept comments until Feb. 26, 2015, on the regulations.gov rulemaking portal.
IAM’s Director of Government & Military Relations Scheduled to Speak in San Diego
Chuck White, IAM’s Director of Government & Military Relations, is scheduled to speak at the California Moving & Storage Association’s (CMSA) San Diego Chapter January meeting on Jan. 15. The meeting will be held at Tom Ham’s Lighthouse restaurant in San Diego. Both CMSA and IAM members are welcome to attend.
For more details on the meeting see the brochure.
Fuel Surcharge for Period 12/15/14 to 1/14/15
The price of fuel was $3.61 per gallon as reported on Monday, December 1, 2014 making the upcoming FSC rates for the period 12/15/14 through 1/14/15 as follows:
GBL Domestic HHG / International HHG – 9%
GSA Domestic HHG – $0.61
GSA International HHG and BAG – $0.61
Personal Property Forum Briefing Slides
The PPF slides are available via the SDDC website.
NTS Tracker for Old Invoices
The following are links to SDDC updates on the initiative to pay old outstanding Non-Temporary Storage Invoices:
- NTS Invoice Reconciliation Project Tracker
- NTS Invoice Reconciliation Project Tracker Update 9-29-14
- NTS Invoice Reconciliation Project Advisory 9-12-14
- Invoice Tracker Q and A
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If you have questions or need assistance, contact Carl.Weaver@IAMovers.org.
Sources: IAM & SDDC
Ashton Carter to be Nominated as Next Defense Secretary
President Obama will nominate Ashton B. Carter, a physicist with long experience at the Pentagon, as his new secretary of defense, according to current and former U.S. officials familiar with the decision.
If confirmed by the Senate, Carter would succeed Chuck Hagel, the former Nebraska senator who is being pushed aside by the White House after less than two years in the job. Hagel, a Republican, fell out of favor with Obama and the president’s inner circle as the U.S. military became embroiled in a new war in the Middle East, a challenge that is expected to preoccupy the Obama administration for the remainder of its term.
**Editor’s Note: Access to military installations continues to be an issue for all organizations doing work on military bases. IAM is supporting the National Defense Transportation Association’s (NDTA) effort to gather information/data on the scope of the problem in order to provide DOD with feedback supporting our efforts to standardize and streamline the process of getting commercial personnel onto military bases. If your organization must access military installations, we encourage you to take a few minutes to complete the survey described below.
As military carriers are all aware, motor carriers frequently experience a wide range of challenges accessing military installations, including inconsistent standards, various forms of ID required, various types of background checks performed, background checks returning false information, and more. The NDTA Surface Committee and Munitions Sub-Committee have been working closely with USTRANSCOM and the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) in an effort to standardize and/or improve the process.
In order to quantify the magnitude of this issue, OSD and USTRANSCOM have requested that motor carriers provide "hard historical data," by directing drivers to complete a short survey each time they pick up or deliver a DOD load (i.e. attempt to access a base or installation). The proposed duration of the survey is between 1 October and 31 December of 2014.
The Driver Survey on DOD Installation Access is available electronically and is accessible on mobile devices, or may be completed by hand using this form. Carriers are asked to instruct drivers to begin collecting data immediately, each time they enter a military installation/facility, and to continue doing so through the end of the year. Paper surveys may be consolidated and mailed or emailed to the following: National Defense Transportation Association (NDTA), ATTN: Mr James Veditz, 50 South Pickett Street, Suite 220, Alexandria, VA 22304. Forms may also be emailed to email@example.com.
Source: NDTA, AMSA & IAM