Quarterly Report: 2010, January - March (Q3), Anderson

Community:
Anderson 
Staff:
 
DCRA Regional Office:
 
Gov't Type:
Second Class City 
Borough:
 
Agreement?
No 
Agreement Date:
 
Entity:
City of Anderson 
Population:
295  
Assessment Status:
 
Assessment Date:
 
Exp Date:
 
Last Updated:
5/10/2010 
Community Sanitation Overview:
All homes have individual wells, septic systems, and plumbing. Water is also derived from a well at the Anderson School. A permitted recreation vehicle (RV) disposal lagoon and sludge disposal site is provided by the city. Residents hire a private septic pumping company when their systems need maintenance; the company deposits the waste into the city owned lagoon. There is a Village Safe Water project proposed to connect all building to a piped wastewater system. Construction of this has not started. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
Fairbanks RUBA staff traveled to Anderson on January 26, 2010. RUBA staff also telephonic assistance to the City of Anderson. The city's code of ordinances were updated and presented to the clerk for finalization. Advice was provided to the city about the local sales tax (private wastewater service is taxable) and at the next election voters will be asked to approve an increase.  
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
No onsite assistance currently scheduled. Continued support provided over the phone and email as requested.
Scores:
 
Essential Indicators:
27 of 27
Sustainable Indicators:
21 of 26
Total Score:
48 of 53

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.
No 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
Financial reports were received on April 8, 2010. The City of Anderson has a budget that is easy to read and lists all the revenue and expenses by department. The budget is balanced and realistic, based on last fiscal year the budget is appropriate. Costs are assigned to each department to pay their share and, as a helpful tool, the current budget line items are compared to the previous fiscal year amended totals. Monthly financial reports are created and prepared to the policy making body. The city has not entered the budget into QuickBooks so it is not using standard reports that QuickBooks can generate. Instead, the city exports income and expense reports into Excel and the provided reports contain all the necessary information: the budget, monthly totals, year-to-date, and the balance. In fact, the reports which show the monthly income/expenses provides more information that the standard QuickBooks report as those do not show financials by month. Another report that the treasurer provides is one titled Bills to be Paid. This report shows which invoices need to get paid and also any purchase orders that need to be authorized. The report details the vendor, purpose, amount, and which city department is responsible for payment. The treasurer does not attend city council meeting (the council does not want to pay the additional wages) so the financial reports are provided by the city clerk who also gives a verbal report. RUBA staff suggested that the treasurer provide a written report to accompany the financials as this will benefit both the city clerk and the entire council. The city does not have any outstanding bills to be paid, bills are entered into QuickBooks as they are received and the A/P report is zero. Fuel is purchased from a local (Nenana) vendor as needed. Since Anderson is on the road it has the benefit of lower fuel costs and near immediate access. The city has plenty of budgeted money allocated for heating fuel and the city is receiving revenue to cover operating expenses. The only utility the city currently has is the lagoon and it is on track to stay within the budget. The Environmental department is expected to cost $25,605 with sewage lagoon revenue fees expected to be $80,000. Year-to-date (YTD) revenues are below those budgeted (should be at 75% of income but as of the end of March was at 65%) and YTD expenditures are below what is budgeted.

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
No A chart of accounts is used that identifies categories in a reasonable, usable manner.
No 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
In preparation of the wastewater construction project, the city passed Ordinance 08-06 Providing Sewer Service to the City of Anderson which included a section on a collection policy. The council has not yet had the opportunity to follow the collection policy since the utility has not been constructed. As the proposed piped wastewater utility does not exist all supporting material is being based on the existing accounting practices of the lagoon, the assumption being that the same practices will be applied to the utility upon completion. Unlike other communities which have many customers that are billed monthly, the City of Anderson has very few consistent customers. The monthly customers the city does have are billed regularly. The city rents out space to the Alaska Department of Motor Vehicles, and to the US Postal Service, bills are mailed monthly. According to the QuickBooks accounts receivable (A/R) report, a private company, Berry Bros 4X4, rents (rented?) a building from the city, bills were created monthly but not always paid, in fact the business owes four months of rent; the last bill created was in June 2009. In addition to A/R, QuickBooks is utilized for accounts payable and payroll. The city has few cash transactions, mostly for the occasional soda, fax, or copy sale. A daily receipt is written out for those purchases. The city, by using QuickBooks, has a system in place to record how money was spent. For the size of the city and number of services the chart of accounts is extensive and would benefit from being reduced to a more manageable number of accounts. The city has created a utility account but it has not been accessed, there is nothing to reconcile. The city has four other bank accounts which were last reconciled on August 31, 2008 (NBA Savings), July 30, 2009 (General Fund Savings), August 31, 2009 (General Fund FNB), and September 30, 2009 (Grant Fund FNB). The approval process for purchases depends on the dollar amount to purchase. For purchases less that $1,500 the employee can make the purchase directly (with a purchase order), for purchase between $1,500 and $5,000 the council member who is designated the department head authorizes the expense. Expenses greater than $5,000 would need to be approved by the entire council and according to the budget.

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
On March 23, 2010 the Department of Labor deemed the city compliant. On March 22, 2010 the IRS deemed the city compliant. The city has no recorded tax liens.

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.
No 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.
No 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 workers compensation insurance policy is posted in the kitchen/employee break room and is purchased through AMLJIA for the periods of July 1, 2009 through July 1, 2010. The personnel policy is part of the Anderson Code of Ordinances 2.50 and is complete, as are the job descriptions for city positions. According to the clerk, and lack of evaluations in the personnel folders reflects that evaluations have not occurred in a number of years. The personnel policies state that they must occur on the employee anniversary date of hire (AO 2.565.5(b)) in addition to other times. The personnel policy has a written hiring process, which provides the mayor the ability to create the device or devices to be used in evaluating applicants, if they wish. Personnel folders contained every document except for the letter of acceptance. According to the personnel policy, the probationary period is 90 days and it is up to the department head to provide job training, oversight, and evaluations. Training opportunities are available and have been utilized. The treasurer recently attended the RUBA sponsored QuickBooks training in Anchorage during the week of September 21-25, 2009.

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
As established in the wastewater utility ordinance 08-06, the City of Anderson shall own and operate the utility. As before, since the utility has not been created all indicators are being based on the actions of the city council (also the utility board) with respect to management of the existing lagoon. The city council meets regularly and is an active participant in discussions with the Village Safewater engineer and was active in passing the utility ordinance. The city council enforces the existing ordinances for the sewage lagoon. Mr. Scott Thompson is the city maintenance foreman who will assume the duties of the operator; Councilman Mike McKenzie is the Public Works Director and immediate supervisor to Mr. Thompson. Councilman McKenzie would fulfill the duties of the manager. Ordinance 08-06 sections 3 and 5 give the city the authority to operate the system. An organizational chart was printer off from the clerk's computer and it shows the current structure and lines of authority. The city council meets every month and those meetings are open to the public to attend.

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.
N/A 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
According to the DEC certified operator database, Mr. Thompson's wastewater treatment and collection certificates are valid until 12/31/2010. An Operatons and Maintenance Manual was finalized April 2010, the VSW engineer provided documentation to RUBA supporting this criteria. The manager does get monthly reports, and if there is anything of a pressing nature he is provided with updates as necessary. The manager also made onsite visits to view productivity and to inspect the maintenance books. Mr. Thompson gives safety meetings according to the standard operating procedures for the lagoon. There have not been any major problems; the utility is operating as designed. Each building has its own water well; the city does not provide public water and does not have a Consumer Confidence Report. The city is not on the SNC list. The city has on hand some essential parts. It also retains fencing and parts to repair the liner. As the city currently only has a lagoon there are very few parts to keep on hand, when compared to a piped water system.