9/8/2011 - YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan -- Since the announcement of the dissolution of the original Government Travel Charge Card in January and the birth of the new Controlled Spend Account, the CSA card has undergone an important policy change.
Before the change, members had been allowed to spend their post-trip, residual balance directly from their card, yet this method of spending the balance is no longer acceptable.
In a memorandum released on August 26, 2011, the Department of the Air Force announced that the CSA card may only be used for expenses directly related to official government travel. After members complete their official travel and respective travel vouchers, they can instead obtain the residual balance by one of the following options:
1) Electronic transfer to a personal account through Citibank's online access system or by calling them directly
2) Request a check be mailed to them, by calling Citibank
3) Wait for a check to be automatically mailed to the cardholder after 60 days of account inactivity
4) ATM withdrawal (2% fee)
"Prior to this memo, I could spend the residual balance off of the card," said Maj. Ned June, 374th Comptroller Squadron commander. "Effective immediately, I am no longer able to do that."
As defined by the Defense Travel Management Office, a Controlled Spend Account is a new type of individually billed government travel charge card where credit limits adjust automatically based on estimated trip costs for approved travel authorizations.
The phasing-out process for the GTC is ongoing.
"We would like to remind customers that if they are still using the old GTC, they must contact their unit's GTC representative to switch to the new CSA travel card," said Capt. Nicholas Pier, 374th Comptroller Squadron financial services flight commander.
Regardless of which card members currently possess, Captain Pier added, "It is the member's personal responsibility to file their travel voucher on time and to make sure that their entire balance is paid off."
For more information about the recent policy change or about the CSA card in general, contact the finance office at 225-7825 or 7826, or email questions to customer service.