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What is contracting and this thing called 'end of year'?

  • Published
  • By Maj. Katrina Curtis
  • 90th Contracting Squadron commander
Some may ask, "What is Contracting?" It is defined as purchasing, renting, leasing, or otherwise obtaining supplies or services from nonfederal sources. In short it means contracting is actively involved in every purchase the government makes from Aircraft and missiles to pens and paper.

Now how does this play a part in the big September event called "end of year"? Since this is football season I will use that as our starting point.end of year is like Contracting's most important game of the year, some will say the Super Bowl but, if you are a college fan, the Bowl Championship Series.

Our success depends on teamwork, like with all teams. We may ask for additional clarification or forms; this is all to ensure we get every requirement right, just like a team getting every play correct. Without the right information the team would never be able to move down the field for a touchdown. We want every requirement we handle to be a touchdown.

During the last week of the fiscal year, you will see our lights on until midnight almost every night. We are all working to make sure the Mighty Ninety gets everything they need to complete the mission. We would not have been able to have such a successful end of year if it wasn't for all the support we received from around the base. From finance and legal to civil engineers and all the resource advisors - they are all part of the team to get the mission done. We require information and last minute reviews to get everything in place before the money disappears at midnight on the 30th.

This year we spent more than $17 million in the month of September alone. Every requirement we received was awarded before that magic date of Sept. 30. We are proud that with all the fall-out dollars received, the mighty ninety was able to execute each dollar and had the largest end of year in at least five years.

After the clock strikes midnight on the 30th, we step into overtime. We immediately start awarding all the services that begin on Oct. 1. There is no rest until each mission critical service is awarded. The mission can't stop just because we enter a new fiscal year.

So when you are watching football this Saturday or Sunday just remember all the work that goes into keeping your base running and all those requirements ending up in your Squadron. We may be a small squadron but as the Air Force Contracting motto states: You Got It... We Bought It!