Monday, April 2, 2012

City saves more than $166,000 by using VISA

Posted By on Mon, Apr 2, 2012 at 3:31 PM

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We all know that guy who uses his credit card to buy everything so he can get frequent flier miles.

In fact, frequent-flier junkies all seem to share the same traits:

1) They talk about it all the time.

2) They tell you all about how they flew to the Bahamas or visited their auntie in Kentucky. Then slyly say, "It didn't cost me a dime."

3) They're completely puzzled that everyone else doesn't buy everything with a credit card. Secretly, they think the rest of us are a bit dense.

Anyway, we appreciate that our city government has not fallen into the frequent-flier conversation trap — even if it does want us all to know how much money it saved by charging virtually everything on its VISA.

Like most of the rest of you, we're happy to see the city save some dough. Let's just hope they don't get hit with a massive late fee...

Read on:

VISA rebate program provides revenue and efficiencies for City

The City of Colorado Springs uses VISA for City transactions to streamline and shorten processing time for paying vendors as well as get a rebate back on spending. The shift to using VISA instead of purchase orders whenever possible in 2011 led to the largest rebate ever for the City, despite the City’s overall budget decrease. A total of $166,084 was paid to the City by VISA as the 2011 rebate.

Authorized staff with a City VISA card receives training on appropriate uses and tracking requirements. All spending is tracked and verified each month to prevent any abuse. By using VISA to pay for items ranging from office supplies to software to required travel, the City sees cost-savings from reduced time spent on purchase orders, processing invoices and issuing checks. This not only benefits the City, but also the vendors who now receive payment in three days and have their own reduced time needed for accounts receivables, invoice processing and other related activities on their end. On top of those process improvements, the City benefits financially from the annual rebate.

To put the number in context, the $166,084 received back from 2011 spending is comparable to paying for these City services:

· Approximately 4 Police Recruits (salary only) = $42,804 *4 = $171,216
· Approximately 4 Fire Trainees (salary only) = $39,132 *4 = $156,528
· Approximately ½ Total Operating Expense for Hillside Community Center = $352,974/2 = $176,487
· Approximately 12,000 potholes filled - $160,000

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