ROB UTAP changes to appointment-only system

Story and photo by Erinn Burgess
U.S. Army Garrison Rheinland-Pfalz Installation Management Command Directorate
A Soldier receives assistance registering for the Utility Tax Avoidance Program at the Valued-Added Tax Office on Rhine Ordnance Barracks. Beginning Oct. 1, UTAP services will be available on an appointment-only basis.

The Utility Tax Avoidance Program saves military members and civilian employees thousands of dollars annually, and now the program wants to save patrons time too.

Beginning Oct. 1, services will be offered only at the Rhine Ordnance Barracks VAT Office and only by appointment. Up until now, registration has been available on a walk-in basis at the Kleber Kaserne, Landstuhl and Rhine Ordnance Barracks Value-Added Tax offices.

Lisa Hartmann, garrison UTAP Collections program manager, ex-plain-ed how the change will enable customers to spend more time with UTAP subject matter experts during their 30-minute appointment and not be rushed due to others waiting behind them.

“Appointments will allow us to give more detailed information and go over customer responsibilities as well as explain how the German utility system is different from the States, so that they have a better understanding of what to expect,” Hartmann said. “We will also explain how to close out and what to do in case they decide to move.”

The shift in services will centralize all UTAP subject matter experts at the ROB VAT Office.

“We will be available at ROB for customers should they have questions further down the line regarding meter readings and year-end bills,” Hartmann explained. “We will be the go-to office for UTAP.”

Changing to appointment-only for UTAP registration will lead to shorter VAT form wait times at Kleber Kaserne and Landstuhl VAT offices, which typically experience long lines due to staff assisting with UTAP registration. Customers may also continue to visit ROB VAT Office for VAT forms, as UTAP appointments will be handled by separate staff members.

To make a UTAP appointment, customers may visit the UTAP facility page on the website and click on the WebTrac link or visit directly. Once a WebTrac account is created, customers can then make an appointment to register for UTAP. Appointments will be available at ROB VAT Office from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Mondays through Fridays in Bldg. 162. All branches of service are welcome to use ROB VAT Office for UTAP registration or may visit the Ramstein VAT Office on a walk-in basis.

If you have any questions or concerns, call 541-9091.