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CPTS Airmen coined for excellence

Airmen stand together for a group photo

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Morgan Saracena, 21st Comptroller Squadron financial services operator, and Airman 1st Class Jane Nicoson, 21st CPTS financial operations technician, pose for a photo with Space Operations Command and 21st CPTS leadership at Peterson Space Force Base, Colorado, Feb. 10, 2022. Saracena and Nicoson were coined for their quick action and attention to detail after discovering and correcting a DoD-wide financial discrepancy. (U.S. Space Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Wise)

A female Airman salutes a Male Airman After being coined

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Morgan Saracena, 21st Comptroller Squadron financial services operator, salutes after being coined by U.S. Space Force Lt. Gen. Stephen Whiting, Space Operations Command commander, at Peterson Space Force Base, Colorado, Feb. 10, 2022. Saracena was recognized for her part in discovering and correcting a discrepancy in basic allowance for housing affecting 3,700 financial records. (U.S. Space Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Wise)

A Female Airman shakes hands with General whiting after being coined

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Jane Nicoson, 21st Comptroller Squadron financial operations technician, is coined by U.S. Space Force Lt. Gen. Stephen Whiting, Space Operations Command commander, at Peterson Space Force Base, Colorado, Feb. 10, 2022. Nicoson was recognized for her part in discovering and correcting a BAH discrepancy affecting 3,700 financial records. (U.S. Space Force photo by Airman 1st Class Brooke Wise)

PETERSON SPACE FORCE BASE, Colo. --

Data collected by the Department of Defense from March through August 2021, indicates the COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on rental housing costs in 56 affected markets. To help ease financial burdens, U.S. uniformed service members who incurred increased housing costs were eligible to apply for a temporary increase in basic allowance for housing.

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Morgan Saracena, 21st Comptroller Squadron financial services operator, and Airman 1st Class Jane Nicoson, 21st CPTS financial operations technician, discovered a large discrepancy for customers who applied for the temporary increase.

“I got a phone call from someone asking if their temporary BAH request had processed,” said Nicoson. “When I checked, I noticed that they had no BAH at all.”

Nicoson and Saracena soon discovered the customer’s BAH was unintentionally stopped completely by the defense finance accounting service. Upon further investigation the Airmen discovered that every Peterson-Schriever Garrison customer who applied for the temporary increase had been affected.

“They immediately routed the issue upward and were able to get over 3,700 records rectified,” said U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Zachary Farmer, 21st CPTS financial operations supervisor. “The two of them always go above and beyond.”

Further research revealed the issue occurred across the entire service, impacting 56 military housing areas across the DoD. The quick action of Nicoson and Saracena resulted in a fix action on Jan. 6, to ensure BAH for impacted personnel was restarted in time to avoid affecting their paychecks on Jan. 15. 

“My job effects the daily lives of Airmen and their families,” said Saracena. “Making sure Airmen are getting the correct pay and entitlements allows them and their families to live comfortably and avoid financial hardship.”

Both Airmen were recognized and coined for their efforts by U.S. Space Force Lt. Gen. Stephen Whiting, Space Operations Command commander, on Feb 10, 2022.

Peterson SFB Schriever SFBCheyenne Mountain SFSThule AB New Boston SFS Kaena Point SFS Maui