Quarterly Report: 2011, January - March (Q3), Egegik

Community:
Egegik 
Staff:
Robert Madeson  
DCRA Regional Office:
 
Gov't Type:
Second Class City 
Borough:
 
Agreement?
No 
Agreement Date:
 
Entity:
City of Egegik 
Population:
62  
Assessment Status:
 
Assessment Date:
 
Exp Date:
 
Last Updated:
5/4/2011 
Community Sanitation Overview:
The City of Egegik operates a public water/sewer system. Egegik's water is supplied by a combination of three wells; one serves as a primary well and the others as alternates. Two storage tanks are used comprised of an indoor 8,000 gallon tank and an outside 100,000 gallon tank. Most households and public facilities are plumbed and connected to the public water and sewer system. Two residences are not connected to sewer. The Icicle Seafoods facility derives processing water from School Lake and obtains water for general use from the city. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
The City Egegik has applied to Regulatory Commission of Alaska (RCA) for a transfer of the electrical distribution system (but not the generation system). The city administrator stated that they have come to an agreement with the trustee on purchase of the distribution system. The city is reluctant to take on the electric utility, but they feel they have no choice. They are reluctant because the property where the generators and equipment storage is located has had numerous fuel, transformer, and other chemical spills. It has been reviewed for compliance over the years both by ADEC and EPA. There have been some enforcement actions taken, but pushing hard on the utility for changes has always opened up the threat that the utility would just shut down. The utility also has substantial IRS debt, and the IRS has been held at bay for the same reason. The city may be held liable for a site that it does not own, and is not proposed to be transferred to it as part of the distribution system transfer. The city's agreement to purchase the distribution system specifically excludes the property that the generators/storage is on, and all equipment located on that site. There are financial concerns by the city in taking over even the distribution system, and developing a new generation site. They already have an airport and harbor facility that consumes a large part of their budget. They will be hard pressed to also run and electric utility. DCRA has worked with the city and RCA for the past several years to try and find a solution to the problems surrounding Egegik Light and Power. While there is a chance that an electrical cooperative or regional utility may take over the administration of the utility, liability issues are key components. 
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA remains available to assist with utility management upon request.
Scores:
 
Essential Indicators:
27 of 27
Sustainable Indicators:
25 of 27
Total Score:
52 of 54

Finances

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes All revenues and expenses for the utility are listed in the utility budget.
Yes The utility has adopted a balanced realistic budget.
Yes Monthly financial reports are prepared and submitted to the policy making board.
Yes The utility is current in paying all water/wastewater electric bills.
Yes The utility has on hand a year's adequate fuel supply or it has a financial plan to purchase an adequate supply.
Yes The utility is receiving revenues (user fees or other sources) sufficient to cover operating expenses.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
No The utility is receiving revenues (user fees or other sources sufficient to cover operating expenses and Repair & Replacement (R) costs.
Yes YTD revenues are at a level equal to or above those budgeted.
Yes YTD expenditures are at a level equal to or below those budgeted.
Yes A monthly manager's report is prepared.
Yes Budget amendments are completed and adopted as necessary.
Finances Comments
The city council has adopted a water/wastewater budget that is balanced and realistic for FY11. Staff provides the city council with a monthly financial report produced in QuickBooks along with a separate spreadsheet outlining departmental details. Revenues through March 29,2011 are trailing expenditures by 4764.00. The city continues to have the ability to subsidize the water sewer budget as needed and maintains budget balance with a general fund subsidy. The city subsidizes it's departments with raw fish sales and use tax. The utility is current on bills including electricity and presently has sufficient fuel supplies on hand. The water operator presents monthly verbal operational reports to the council; the administrator presents utility financial reports.

Accounting Systems

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility has adopted a collection policy and actively follows it.
Yes The utility bills customers on a regular basis.
Yes An accounts receivable system is in place which tracks customers and reports past due accounts and amounts.
Yes An accounts payable system is in place.
Yes The payroll system correctly calculates payroll and keeps records.
Yes A cash receipt system is in place that records incoming money and how it was spent.
Yes The utility has a cash disbursement system that records how money was spent.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
Yes A chart of accounts is used that identifies categories in a reasonable, usable manner.
Yes Monthly bank reconciliations have been completed for all utility accounts.
Yes The utility has a purchasing system that requires approval prior to purchase, and the approval process compares proposed purchases to budgeted amounts.
Accounting Systems Comments
The city council serves as the water/wastewater governing body and enforces the utility ordinance. The ordinance includes a comprehensive collection policy. The city is consistently billing for water/wastewater services. RUBA recommends continued consistent billing of user fees. Staff use QuickBooks for bookkeeping and produce a supplemental spreadsheet-based monthly financial report for city departments including the water/wastewater utility. QuickBooks is used for accounts receivable, accounts payable, and payroll processing. Staff maintains cash receipt and disbursement records. Staff completes bank reconciliations monthly. Staff utilizes a procurement policy for purchases. All checks require two approved signatures.

Tax Problems

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility has a system to accurately calculate, track, and report payroll tax liabilities.
Yes The utility is current on filing tax reports.
Yes The utility is current on making tax deposits.
Yes If there are any past due tax liabilities or recorded tax liens, a lien release has been issued or a repayment agreement has been signed and repayments are current.
Tax Problems Comments
City staff calculates, tracks, and reports payroll tax with QuickBooks computerized accounting software. Concerning taxes, staff indicate state and federal tax deposits and reports are submitted timely. Taxpayer Advocate Federal Tax Information on 03/23/11 reported the city is deemed compliant by the IRS. On 03/11/2011 the Alaska Department of Labor (DOL) confirmed that the city is meeting Alaska Employment Security tax obligations through the period ending 12/31/2010. The city is not on the Tax Lien list.

Personnel System

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility has a posted workers compensation insurance policy in effect.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility has adopted and uses a Personnel Policy, which has been reviewed by an attorney, AML or Commerce for topics and language.
Yes The utility has adequate written job descriptions for all positions.
Yes The utility has adopted and follows a written personnel evaluation process that ties the job description to the evaluation.
Yes The utility has an adequate written hiring process.
Yes The utility has personnel folders on every employee that contain at least: I-9, Job Application and Letter of Acceptance.
Yes The utility has a probationary period for new hires that includes orientation, job training/oversight, and evaluations.
Yes The utility provides training opportunities to staff as needed and available.
Personnel System Comments
The city workers compensation policy is through AMLJIA. The Division of Worker's Compensation website indicates Policy Number 113 is current and in place on 03/09/2011 Staff abides by a well-written personnel policy, maintains comprehensive personnel files, and has satisfactory job descriptions in place. The comprehensive personnel policy is included in the code of ordinances. The city council supports staff development and training.

Organizational Management

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The entity that owns the utility is known; the entity that will operate the utility is set.
Yes The policy making body is active in policy making of the utility.
Yes The policy making body enforces utility policy.
Yes The utility has an adequately trained manager.
Yes The utility has an adequately trained bookkeeper.
Yes The utility has an adequately trained operator or operators.
Yes The utility has adopted the necessary ordinances (or rules and regulations) necessary to give it the authority to operate.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility has adopted an organizational chart that reflects the current structure.
Yes The policy making body meets as required.
Yes The utility complies with the open meeting act for all meetings.
Organizational Management Comments
The city council serves as the utility board, meets regularly, and actively enforces utility policy. The administrator, formally trained in accounting and with over 10 years of advanced financial management experience for municipalities, serves as the primary bookkeeper. The city administrator oversees all public works programs including the water/wastewater utility and city projects. The administrator also serves as a water operator. An experienced administrative assistant assists with recordkeeping and reports directly to the city administrator. A trained water operator reports directly to the city administrator and oversees day to day utility operations. Water/wastewater operator staff are trained, certified, and participate in training opportunities. Utility staff is cross-trained for tasks including utility maintenance and operation, water/wastewater maintenance of private wells and septic systems, heavy equipment, and streets and roads. Concerning the category entitled organizational, city has in place a comprehensive water/wastewater ordinance. RUBA recommended review of the ordinance in comparison to the sample published by the Regulatory Commission of Alaska. The city council meets as required and complies with the Open Meetings Act.

Operation of Utility

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility operator(s) are actively working towards necessary certification.
Yes The utility has a preventative maintenance plan developed for the existing sanitation facilities.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The manager receives a monthly O&M report from the utility operator and routinely "spot checks" the facilities to see that the maintenance items are being completed.
No The utility has a safety manual and holds safety meetings.
Yes Utility facilities have not suffered any major problems/outages due to management issues that are unresolved.
Yes The utility is operating at the level of service that was proposed.
Yes The operator provides status reports to the manager on a routine basis.
Yes The utility has completed and distributed its "Consumer Confidence Report".
Yes The utility is not on the "Significant Non-Complier" (SNC) list.
Yes The utility maintains an inventory control list.
Yes The utility maintains a critical spare parts list.
Operation of Utility Comments
Egegik is not listed in the Significant Non-Complier (SNC) list.The water operators are trained and plan to maintain certification for water and water treatment, water distribution, wastewater collection, and wastewater treatment. A current 2009 consumer confidence report has been posted, and distributed to the community and placed on file with the Dillingham Regional RUBA office. Utility staff maintains a preventative maintenance plan and maintains contact with regional Remote Maintenance Worker staff. The city administrator as utility manager is a certified and experienced water operator, and spot checks facilities and utility staff work routinely. The utility has not suffered any major outages lately and is operating at the level of service that was proposed. RUBA recommends safety meetings and suggests formation of a safety committee. Operators provide reports to the city council at their monthly meeting. The utility has an inventory control list and critical spare parts list and a current Operations and Maintenance Manual. RUBA recommends employee safety meetings be held regularly to help ensure continued success with utility operations.