Ok. My head asplode.
Ok. We did not move here by choice; the USAF, in all its infinite wisdom, decided that with just 2 years left to serve before retirement, in spite of all the really good reasons we had for staying at Travis AFB (including the fact that that was where we intended to stay, thus saving them the expense of moving us elsewhere, and including the fact that the Spouse Thingy’s CO agreed we had valid reasons for staying at Travis, and should be allowed to), we were going to Ohio.
Ok. Fine. We did not want to come here, but figured since it was supposed to be a really good assignment we’d make the best of it. And it has been a really nice place to live. Seriously nice. Great people here. But you gotta figure it cost the taxpayers close to 8-10 grand to get us here, and now they have to pay to send us back. The taxpayers have my sincere apologies.
Ok. Usually as part of a move, the military member gets what’s know as DLA; that’s military speak for “dislocation allowance.” It’s basically 2 months worth of a housing allowance, to help the family with uncovered moving expenses, and to put down a deposit, etc, on a new place to live at the new duty station. It’s very helpful, and removes the out of pocket expenses the military members used to incur with every transfer.
Ok. Now, all this time we were lead to believe we would get DLA for this retirement move. It wasn’t in any of the paperwork, but it was told to the Spouse Thingy more than once. Yes, you get DLA. He was warned he would not get funds for temporary housing (10 days worth, to be used on either end of a move, or both) so we were prepared for that. We were not prepared to find out that we would not be getting the DLA, which for us is roughly $2400.
That’s a lot of money to suddenly find out you won’t have to make a cross-country move (oh…I forgot to start the new paragraph with OK. So…ok.) We were decidedly not happy about it, but it’s not a retirement entitlement, and there’s nothing we can do about it. It’s just one more, final, bend-over-and-smile-while-you-get-screwed thing. Without lubricant. I can only think that they wanted us to get here, but don’t care if we get home and can afford to rent some place to live. Sure, give the military 20 years…then goodbye, and go live in a box for all we care.
Ok. So we’re going home without DLA. Fine. But today the housing office calls and says our rent was not paid. The rent that is supposed to be automatic, coming directly out of the Spouse Thingy’s pay. They want it by Friday. But guess what! It’s not in our bank account either! I don’t think it’s showing up on his October 1 pay, either! Yay!
Ok. So they’re claiming our rent is paid in arrears. Really now. When we moved in—the middle of August—we had to write them a check to cover the rest of August. And then September 1 of that year the housing allotment hadn’t kicked in, so we had to go in and pay them the rent for September…obviously we were paying ahead, not in arrears. And to clear the final inspection, we have to have a check in hand to cover rent from Oct 1-11.
Ok. We understood that. What I don’t understand is why we now have to have—by Friday—around $1200 to cover rent that should have already been paid. I can’t see anywhere where our rent has ever been paid in arrears. But ya know what? Unless we cough it up, we can’t leave. So Friday we have to hand over $1200 and then on the 12th another almost-$500. And we don’t get DLA to help out on the other end.
Ok. This is math I can do. $2400 in DLA we’re not getting plus $1200 in rent we shouldn’t have to pay equals $3600.
edit, 20 minutes later...
Ok. Color me red. I found the checkbook register from the time period in question, and I'll be damned, but we paid the September rent in October. I hate being wrong. Really really really hate it. That doesn't mean I want to pay it, but cripes...
I still have righteous indignation over not getting the DLA!!! Yeah! Power to the people!
:::wanders off, muttering to self:::