The Tobago House of Assembly is preparing for an Assembly-wide roll out of its Automated Clearinghouse (ACH) accounting system by May 1, 2019.
The system is already in use for payment of staff, and will be extended to include suppliers. In fact, according to Secretary of Finance and the Economy Joel Jack, his Division has already completed a full roll out of the system, which will soon be extended across the THA.
The Division is already using the system to pay suppliers, such as utility companies, and will add contracted services—including janitorial and security payments—to the system.
“In the near future,” Jack said, “we will be inviting all our suppliers to participate in this process to register with the respective Divisions to ensure that their payments can be made via the ACH system.”
The Finance Secretary said so far, the system has helped the Assembly improve its payment processes, and ensure that funds can be delivered to banks in as many as five days earlier.
“…In the past, you would have had to type a cheque, issue that cheque, separate that cheque and have a messenger deliver it to the bank and we would have the bank process it,” Jack added. “But now we have a direct payment from the Division to the respective bank accounts of our suppliers and our employees.”
He said the Assembly is making progress towards its benchmark of settling invoices within ten working days.