Quarterly Report: 2012, July - September (Q1), Tuluksak

Community:
Tuluksak 
Staff:
Eli Jacobson  
DCRA Regional Office:
 
Gov't Type:
Federally Recognized Tribe 
Borough:
 
Agreement?
No 
Agreement Date:
 
Entity:
Tuluksak Native Community 
Population:
373  
Assessment Status:
 
Assessment Date:
 
Exp Date:
 
Last Updated:
10/26/2011 
Community Sanitation Overview:
The traditional council operates the washeteria, water treatment plant, container haul system, and electrical services for the community. Only one watering point, with storage capacity of 7,000 gallons, serves the entire community, washeteria, clinic, and the school. Residents haul honey-buckets to 21 bins located sparingly throughout the community.  
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
During this quarter RUBA staff worked the Tuluksak Administrator and Rural Alaska Empowered in order to bring Tuluksak Native Community into RUBA compliance. Rural Alaska Empowered has been hired to perform the bookkeeping duties for Tuluksak. A significant amount of correspondence provided the necessary documentation needed to meet all the essential indicators. As of September 28, 2011 Tuluksak Native Community became RUBA compliant.  
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA staff will continue to work with Tuluksak on the remaining indicators.
Scores:
 
Essential Indicators:
27 of 27
Sustainable Indicators:
10 of 27
Total Score:
37 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.
No YTD revenues are at a level equal to or above those budgeted.
No YTD expenditures are at a level equal to or below those budgeted.
No A monthly manager's report is prepared.
No Budget amendments are completed and adopted as necessary.
Finances Comments
The Tuluksak Native Community has an FY11 budget that has been prepared for them by Alaska Rural Empowered, a consultant group hired by the community. The council adopted the budget by resolution dated March 3, 2011. The budget was amended on June 3, 2011 and the meeting minutes reflect this. The utility budget has revenues of $68,000 and expenditures of $73,065 equaling a negative balance of $5,065. However, the Tuluksak Native Community revenue is $968,709 with only $919,385 in expenditures providing a positive balance of $49,324. This is more than enough to subsidize the utility; the utility budget does not identify or include a subsidy. Monthly financial reports have been prepared by Alaska Rural Empowered through July 2011 and submitted to the council. The meeting minutes reflect this. Tuluksak Native Community operates its own electric plant and the water plant is not billed, but experiences frequent power losses. During the entire first day of this assessment the power was out. The administrator stated that the utility has enough fuel for one year. The budget does not have a line item or an account established for repair and replacement. The council meets twice a month.

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.
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
Tuluksak Native Community has an adopted a collection policy. Customers are currently billed on a prepay system. The administrator and accountant have attended QuickBooks training. However, a manual system is still being used for accounting while they are transitioning to QuickBooks. Accounts receivable, accounts payable, and the payroll are done with a manual system. A receipt book is used for all customer payments. The administrative secretary showed the file cabinet with all the vendors containing invoices and payment records. The administrator has to approve all purchases up to five thousand dollars. The tribal president approves purchases between five and ten thousand dollars. Purchases above ten thousand dollars must go before the council. Receipts are kept of these purchases. Monthly bank reconciliations were not provided.

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 Tuluksak Native Community uses a manual system to calculate and report payroll taxes. The tribal administrator and accountant have both been to QuickBooks training and are in the process of converting to a computerized system. A form requesting release of federal tax information from 2006 to 2011 was sent to the IRS on September 23, 2011. On September 28, 2011 the IRS verified that the Tuluksak Native Community is current on Federal taxes through June 30, 2011. The Alaska Department of Labor (DOL) was contacted on September 22, 2011. DOL verified that Tuluksak Native Community is current on their Employment Security Contributions account. Tuluksak is not on the Lien Watch dated July-August 2011.

Personnel System

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility has a posted workers compensation insurance policy in effect.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
No 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.
No 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.
No 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
Tuluksaks workers compensation insurance is through Alaska National Insurance Company, for the period from September 10, 2011 through September 10, 2012. On September 28, 2011 RUBA staff contacted Alaska National Insurance Company. A representative of Alaska National Insurance Company stated that Kasigluk is current on payments and has paid through November 10, 2011. The utility has written job descriptions for all positions that were available for review at the time of the assessment. The utility does not have an adopted personnel evaluation process. Evaluations are done orally. The utility needs a written hiring process. Personnel folders contain job applications, but not I-9's, and letters of acceptance. The administrator stated utility has a probationary period of ninety days with an evaluation after three months, but there was no written documentation. On-the-job training and additional training opportunities are provided as necessary. Staff are encouraged to pursue further training opportunities.

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
No 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
Tuluksak Native Community owns the utility, and is the policy making body. The policy making body is active and enforces the utility policy. The administrator has fifteen months experience and performs the duties of a manager. Bookkeeping duties are performed by Rural Alaska Empowered. The utility operator has ten years experience. Additional staff are being sent for water operator training. The policy making body meets twice each month and meetings are open to the public. The meetings are posted in four different public places and meet the requirements for 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
No 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.
No The utility has completed and distributed its "Consumer Confidence Report".
Yes The utility is not on the "Significant Non-Complier" (SNC) list.
No The utility maintains an inventory control list.
No The utility maintains a critical spare parts list.
Operation of Utility Comments
The utility's operator is Carl Napoka, a permanent part time employee. Mr. Napoka is not on Alaska's Certified Water/Waste Water Operator Database. Mr. Napoka has ten years experience, but states he will not be able to do this job much longer. He came out of retirement just to help his community when the last water operator quit. Mr. Napoka has been trying to train an apprentice for the community. Two trainees are being sent into water operator training. The utility has a preventative maintenance plan on the wall. The administrator is in regular contact with the utility operator, and receives regular verbal status reports, but does not spot check the facility. The utility should create a safety manual, and hold regular safety meetings. The utility has had no major outages since December of 2010. The operator provides status reports to the administrator. While the assessment was being conducted the operator came in and informed the administrator of parts that were needed. The posted CCR is dated July 7, 2008 which does not meet the requirements for a current report. The city is not on the April 2011 Significant Non-Compliance list. The utility does not have an inventory control, or critical spare parts list.