Quarterly Report: 2010, October - December (Q2), Mekoryuk

Community:
Mekoryuk 
Staff:
Fred Broerman  
DCRA Regional Office:
 
Gov't Type:
Second Class City 
Borough:
 
Agreement?
No 
Agreement Date:
 
Entity:
City of Mekoryuk 
Population:
208  
Assessment Status:
 
Assessment Date:
 
Exp Date:
 
Last Updated:
2/22/2010 
Community Sanitation Overview:
The City of Mekoryuk manages the water and sewer utility. Individual flush tank and haul systems are in 96 homes and 11 commercial/public facilities. There is a water treatment and storage system, 9,000,000 gallon lined reservior, water treatment plant, and a 125,000 gallon water storage tank, a washeteria with laundry facilities, public showers and a 4.2 acre sewage lagoon. The Lower Kuskokwim School District has its own well but uses the city's sewage lagoon.  
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
On December 1, 2009, Anchorage and Bethel staff traveled to Mekoryuk to conduct a RUBA management assessment at the request of the city administrator. A Memorandum of Agreement between the city and the tribe was recently terminated and managment of the utility services was resumed by the city. The administrator was interested in assessing the city's managment capacity now that the city and tribe no longer share administrative duties. Upon arrival in Mekoryuk, RUBA was met byu the City Administrator, City Clerk, and a City Council Member. A list of items needed to document RUBA compliance had been previously faxed to the city and nearly all items were provided prior to the visit. The administrator was current on providing financial and managerial reports through the last quarter. Related items discussed during the visit included the wastewater service agreement between the Lower Kuskokwim School District and the City of Mekoryuk. The school maintains its own water well and uses the city's wastewater system. The agreement reached between the two entities was to charge a flat rate rather then metered rate. The use of a meter was left open for future consideration. Community Revenue Sharing and Payment in Lieu of Taxes were discussed and an amended FY10 budget was provided that included the newly received revenues. The administrator questioned the collections process and asked how other communities were handling collections. Also discussed was ordinances, election of officers by the council, and a personnel policy.  
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA staff will continue providing technical assistance when requested and keep records current.
Scores:
 
Essential Indicators:
27 of 27
Sustainable Indicators:
26 of 27
Total Score:
53 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
Yes 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 of Mekoryuk passed an amended FY10 budget and has been consistent in providing monthly financial reports. The monthly financial reports show the budget, month and year-to-date, and remaining balance fiqures. The city provided Alaska Village Electric Cooperative (AVEC) statements that provided the documentation that they are current with payments for all utilities and city owned facilities. The city has line items in the budget for maintenance and equipment for the existing washeteria and has budgeted for equipment parts for sewage and water tanks. Line items also include repair and replacement costs. The Manager's reports are provided at monthly meetings.

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 keeps records in the computer as soon as a financial transaction is complete. They use Windows XP and QuickBooks Pro 05. They also record receipts. When cash is received, the customer receives a receipt and it is recorded. Purchases are first checked to see if sufficient funds are available. If the request is approved, a check is cut and the invoice and check stub are stapled together and filed.

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
The Taxpayer Advocate deemed the the City of Mekoryuk is compliant with filing reports and making deposits, but reported that 941 was delinquent for 06/09. This was brought to the attention of the City Administrator and he states that the 941 was filed October 25, 2009. Verification is pending.On January 11, 2010, the Bethel office received verification that the 941 for the quarter in question was filed and deposited. The State of Alaska, Department of Labor-ESC tax reported the city is in compliance and have a credit balance with the state.

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
Worker's compensation insurance through Liberty Northwest Insurance Company is current through November 22, 2010. Job descriptions were provided for the city personnel. The personel policies are used to manage employee issues. A vacancy is advertised for 15 days locally when one is open. Hirings and promotions are based on merit and ability. All personnel folders contain I-9's, job applications and letter of acceptance. There is a 90-day probationary period for new hires. The Personnel Policy has been reviewed and is being revised.

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 of Mekoryuk has hired the IRA Council's previous excutive director to be the city s full-time administrator. The bookkeeper/city clerk position is currently open and is being temporarily staffed. The water plant operator has a Level I certificate in Water Distribution and Treatment, and is Operator in Training certified in Wastewater and Wastewater Treatment. He has also received training in electrical workshop and boiler maintenance. The alternate plant operator has an OIT certificate in Water Distribution and a Level 1 Certificate in Water Treatment. The city is active in the policy making of the utility.

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.
Yes 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".
No 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
The utility operators have certification for Water Distribution. Water maintenance plan for existing water and sewer facilities was provided. The water operators report to the city administrator on daily facitities operations. The city provided the most recent Consumer Confidence Report. The Mekoryuk Washeteria is on the SNC list for Stage 1 : last violation 12/08 reported lack of annual monitering for TTHM/HAA5.7 of 12 months towards Stage 1 RTC by December 2009 with a 12 month violation-free monitering for DS CI residual levels and collection of annual TTHM/HAA5 in 2009.