Report Number I-2001-008
CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS
The high delinquency rates of INS employees indicate that the INS is not effectively administering its travel card program. Our review identified specific weaknesses in travel card program administration and the reasons the weaknesses occurred. We believe that implementation of the following recommendations would benefit the INS by strengthening procedures for administering the travel card program, thus reducing misuse of travel cards and delinquent payment of travel card charges.
We recommend that the INS Commissioner:
- Stress to INS management the importance of reducing travel card delinquencies and misuse;
- Require local travel card coordinators to refer cardholder accounts (1) to supervisors when the account becomes 30-days delinquent and (2) to location managers when the account becomes 60-days delinquent;
- Require local travel card coordinators to refer instances of travel card misuse (1) to supervisors immediately for follow up and (2) to location managers if misuse is serious, frequent, or unresolved;
- Develop and implement a standard form to be used by supervisors to document the reasons for the travel card delinquency or misuse and the actions taken by the supervisor to resolve the delinquency or misuse. Require the supervisors to submit these forms in a timely manner to the local travel coordinators;
- Require location managers to comply with INS procedures and refer all unresolved delinquencies and instances of serious or frequent misuse to the INS Office of Internal Audit for investigation;
- Establish procedures requiring the INS national coordinator to provide management information pertaining to unresolved travel card delinquencies and instances of serious or frequent misuse to a senior INS official for review and follow-up;
- Deny cash advances to those employees who have had their travel cards canceled due to delinquency or misuse;
- Consider automating the process by which Bank One is notified of cardholder name and hierarchy address changes;
- Assess the travel requirements of INS employees and consider restricting access to travel cards;
- Require that all coordinators receive formal training;
- Inform all managers and supervisors of their role in the travel card monitoring process; and
- Provide employees with regular briefings on their responsibilities related to the travel card.