April 19, 2012

Personal Property Section keeps household goods moving

Written by: Staff
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A successful move is not a matter of chance; it is the result of planning and hard work by you and the Personal Property Section. At the center of these efforts are you – the property owner. If you expect a good move, YOU must play an active role. Our experts at the Personal Property Section are here to make sure your move is a success.

The past year has been a challenge for Traffic Management Offices worldwide; the majority of all shipments are now completed On-Line by you the military member. So in planning for a BUSY summer season, we here at the TMO Davis-Monthan want to bring you, our customer up to date and get you ready for moving.

Here are some common questions to personal property personnel.

Do I need orders to move? 

Yes, TMO must have a hard copy of your PCS, Local Move, Separation or Retirement orders to process a move says SrA Cozmo DiGiano. Your orders let TMO know what your entitlements are for moving and give a current appropriation fund for TMO and JPPSO to make a contract with the moving industry.

How far in advance should I contact the Personal Property Section? 

During our peak season, which usually runs from May through October, plan at least 30 days in advance. “Even an initial phone call helps alleviate problems,” said SrA Jarrid McIntyre, personal property counselor. The customer service desk can be reached at 228-4818.

What are your customer service hours?

Summer hours are 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. If customers need more time, we will make arrangements for extended hours. Local moving companies may start packing as early as 6 a.m. and work as late as 9 p.m.

How do I go about arranging my move? 

A new program has been in effect for the past year, called Defense Personal Property System (DPS). Once orders have been issued, come to TMO and we will look at your orders and entitlements and give you the instructions to start your paperwork in DPS. If you are anticipating a move, we suggest getting your Login and account set up early, as the system takes about 72 hours or longer in the peak season to reply with your password. The website for DPS is: www.move.mil. If you have any problems with DPS, we also have a computer café at which we can assist you through your process.

What kind of shipments can I do in DPS? 

You can do the following shipments: Personally Procured Move (PPM), stateside to stateside, international moves to include household goods and unaccompanied baggage. When going to the overseas area and placing property in permanent storage please inform the counselor as these shipments go into a different system and must be completed by the Personal Property Counselor. Shipments that go to unusual countries such as Bosnia, Egypt and other unusual countries must be completed by the TMO personnel.

Are there restrictions in DPS on who can or cannot use DPS? 

DPS is to be used by all branches of the military and Federal civilian work force. The program is a DoD mandated program. Our rules at TMO are to counsel in a mass briefing or one-on-one if members are first time PCS’ing, separating or retiring. All other personnel will get their briefing and paperwork through DPS. DPS is a one-stop shop program says SrA Cozmo DiGiano; he reminds everyone that the whole move concept from briefing to claims is processed in DPS. Also, a shipment is NOT signed off until each member comes back to TMO after the application is completed in DPS, as TMO personnel have to verify your orders and add items that you the member are not allowed to do.

What is the time limit for booking a shipment? 

TMOs no longer book shipments; this process is completed by JPPSO-Colorado Springs. The shipment distribution section at JPPSO-COS requires a 21 day notice from the time the shipment is signed off by TMO during normal shipping season. Please be prepared for a 30 day notice says SSgt Jaimie Bazar. The JPPSO-COS will notify us to this requirement and all TMOs will have to abide by the 21 to 30 day requirement. SSgt Bazar also reminds everyone that alternate dates during the peak season will also be a requirement.

What can I ship as household goods? 

Items associated with the home and personal effects belonging to the customer and dependents on the effective date of the owner’s orders. Only items that may be legally transported by commercial carrier are allowed.

* Weapons

* Vehicles other than POV: Such as motorcycles, mopeds, jet skis, hang gliders, snowmobiles, golf carts and their associated trailers

* Boats: For uniformed service members, boats 14 ft in length and under and without a trailer may be shipped as HHG. The definition of boats includes, but not limited to canoes, skiff, light rowboats, kayaks, and dinghies. Boats in excess of 14 ft or any boat with a trailer must be shipped separately, which in most cases results in excess cost to the member.

What you cannot ship!

You may not ship airplanes, automobiles, trucks, vans and similar vehicles; camper trailers; farm equipments. (You have a separate entitlement for your privately owned vehicle when moving to, from or between overseas duty stations.) Items that are considered hazardous may not be shipped, such as propane tanks, corrosive liquids (batteries with acid, dyes, iron/steel compounds), explosives (ammunitions, fireworks, igniters) and flammables (acetone, glues, cement). Scuba tanks and oxygen tanks must be serviced for shipment by written certification of purging serviced by dive shop or licensed individual qualified to perform purging. A tag or label must be affixed to the tank certifying service was performed; these steps must be taken for the carrier to take scuba tanks in your household goods. Items such a pavers, cement blocks and gravel to be used in yards may not be shipped either locally or long distance. Personal Property will provide a list so you may go through all your property and dispose of these items.

Helpful Hints and What to look for: 

Video tape your property prior to the carrier coming to pack. Good audio and video description is invaluable if your property should be destroyed or lost. Take a few minutes do the recording and take with you.

Jewelry and other high value items should not be shipped. Examples of other high value items are coins, stamp collection, sports cards and your social security cards, insurance papers and other important documents.

If you decide high value items are to be shipped, they ABSOLUTELY must be listed on the High Value inventory. In addition, you must be able to substantiate what you owned and its preshipment value.

Before you move, prepare your own personal inventory and gather substantiation of your major items (original purchase receipts, charge card receipts, preshipment appraisals, etc). Keep this information separate from your household goods. Carry it with you or mail it to your next duty station.

The preparation of the inventory is the most crucial step in the moving process. You simply must control the packing and inventorying of your household goods. Watch the carrier employee who fills out your inventory to make sure he or she describes the condition of your property correctly. If you disagree, document the specific reason for your disagreement at the bottom of each inventory page.

Make sure the packers write adequate descriptions of the contents on the boxes themselves, and on the inventory. Every item does not have to be listed, but a general category of the contents should be on the outside of the box.

What is packed at origin is unpacked at destination, the government pays the moving companies for this service and military member or dependents should make sure the moving companies account for all items listed on the inventory. Take the time to account for all high value/ high risk items.

I just want to mail items to my next duty station what do I do?

All military member must come to the TMO office and have a DD form 2278 issued to them to mail any items says SrA Cozmo DiGiano. The Joint Federal Travel Regulation has changed and all members must know their government constructed cost before they mail so they can get paid correctly and not lose money. SrA DiGiano also reminds members that insurance is not covered under the mailing system so please remember if you buy extra insurance that cost is out of your pocket.

I had my property delivered and did my own unpacking, the moving company did not come back out and pick-up debris, why? 

With the change to DPS, the contract the government signed with the moving industry was that since your property is covered under Full Replacement Valuation that you should have the company unpack everything to account for all your items. With this in effect, debris removal was taken away and carriers are not required to come back out to pick-up your boxes.

I heard that we the members have to provide our bolts for washers now, is this true?

Yes, says Linda Laux, Quality Control Inspector – the new change with the moving industry is that if you have a front load washer you the member must provide these bolts to the moving crew. Plan ahead and get with your appliance service department that sold you your washer so you can get the bolts in time for your move. The moving company will place bolts on the washer for your move and charge the government for labor.

We heard that the Do-It-Your-Self program has changed, what is new? 

The Do-It-Your-Self program is now called Personally Procured Move (PPM) program. Whether you are going outbound or coming inbound to any TMO you must have the appropriate paperwork issued to you. With DPS coming on line and carrier rates changing under the “Best-value” each member must have their PPM paperwork – there is NO AFTER THE FACT PPMs. Members must have a DD form 2278, weight tickets, and expense sheet to get paid. This entitlement was changed April 15, 2010, as members now have available to them the on-line DPS system or going to TMO, so that is the reason After-The-Fact PPM’s have been eliminated. Once your PPM move has been calculated by the customer service section, all documents are taken to finance and then sent to DFAS-Ellsworth for payment and the cross over time is about 3 weeks.

When I filed my PPM move I did not get paid for gas & tolls, why? 

Personally procured moves are paid on the actual weight of the shipment; expenses such as gas/tolls/packing materials and rental vehicle say SSgt Jacqueline Berry, are considered non-taxable items. TMO pays based on the gross incentive figure at 95%, whether you take the advance or wait till you turn your move in TMO will not reimburse the non-taxable items. At the end of the year your local finance office will send out a W-2 for the non-taxable item and then you may claim on your taxes.

I know I will exceed my weight entitlement, what should I do? 

First and most important is to know your weight entitlements, all entitlements are based on rank and with or without dependents. Did you get rid of all old items, useless items? Also remember to claim your Professional gear at origin and account for it at destination. Each member is responsible for making sure they point out to the moving crew professional gear, books and equipment. Your pro gear is not counted against you as your net weight but you must claim it at origin and have it annotated on your inventory. Remember there is no “after-the-fact” pro gear once you reach destination and then remember you forgot to claim it.

If you are still overweight, always, always ask for a reweigh at destination for each shipment the government transports for you. Once a reweigh has been accomplished the government will take the lesser of the weights and that weight is what is calculated for your shipment.

My house doesn’t close until next week. How far in advance does Personal Property need notice for delivery?

The summer season is a hectic time. The JPPSO will need at least seven working days notice to set up deliveries. Please do not arrange to have your household goods delivered the same day of your closing; something may go wrong at the signing. Schedule your delivery for the day after your signing. Remember household goods and baggage shipment must be delivered Monday through Fridays and no holidays.

When is the best time to move and are there any secrets to reducing the stress on pack and pickup days? 

Everybody tries to move the first and last week of each month. Scheduling your move more towards the middle of a month is better says Staff Sgt. Khenz Jacinthe. There is less competition for the JPPSO/DPS sections to find a moving company.

People can minimize stress by giving the pack-out and loading their full attention. Do not disconnect phones or terminate leases. Also, send the children and pets to a sitter for a day or two. If you live on base, Airmen & Family Support has the PCS Child Care program where you can get 20 hours of child care. Contact FCC office at 228-2201 for further details.

I am deploying for 180 days, what are my entitlements? 

Deployment orders are very strict and have little entitlement for the personal property section. Check your orders to see if the following statement “Authorized to store POV” is included. If it is you can store a vehicle at government expense. Bring us a copy of your deployment orders and we will issue you a storage letter to store your POV. You may store your vehicle locally or at the POV port in California. Reimbursement is not to exceed the government cost of storing and will be reimbursed after you return. There is no household goods storage entitlement under deployments orders unless your TDY is considered a 999 or indeterminate TDY.

We are PCSing overseas with a pet, what should we know? 

First be careful of the season you are PCSing says Staff Sgt. Larry Daker. During the hot summer months the airline industry places a pet embargo on all pets leaving Tucson, Arizona due to the extreme heat. This embargo starts in June and goes through September and since this is an airline policy we cannot overrule their policy. Also, check with us to see what the countries’ requirements are for taking in pets. Each country is different and some countries will not take certain breeds.

How soon in advance should I make our airlines reservations? 

Whether you are PCSing or going TDY, making your airline reservations is simple and quick says Staff Sgt. Jaimie Bazar. You do not need your orders to make airline reservations, so do not wait till the last minute. You can make your reservation as soon as you know you have a TDY or PCS. If you are going TDY you will make your reservation through Defense Travel System (DTS). If you are PCSing you will bring a DD Form 1546 issued from outbound assignments and the passenger service section will determine if you will travel via AMC or commercial carrier. However, your tickets will not be issued until 3 days prior to your travel.

Sergeant Bazar also reminds everyone that passenger services must assign all military personnel on an AMC flights first by regulation. Our section can book 90 days out from your PCS date, if seats are not available on AMC, then commercial reservations will be given to the member/family

How can I contact Personal Property?

You may reach the customer service and appointment desk at 228-4816/4817and 4818. Quality Control can be reached at 228-2014; Passenger travel section at 228-4861, the Rodger’s Travel office at 228-4841 and 4842.

If you have any problems, contact a member of the following management team: I am the personal property supervisor and can be reached at 228-1375; Superintendent SMSgt Rodney VanLeuven at 228-4198; or Gregory Coker, Traffic Management Officer at 228-5488.

The goal of personal property is to provide exceptional moving service. Early planning, knowledge of your entitlements, family pre-planning, working with the household goods carriers and using information provided by personal property counselors will result in a great move and family relocation.

The Personal Property Section is located in Building 3200, main lobby. Come see us and we will help you get started toward a great move.

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