Quarterly Report: 2011, January - March (Q3), Port Graham

Community:
Port Graham 
Staff:
Ronalda Olivera  
DCRA Regional Office:
 
Gov't Type:
Federally Recognized Tribe 
Borough:
 
Agreement?
No 
Agreement Date:
 
Entity:
Native Village of Port Graham 
Population:
171  
Assessment Status:
 
Assessment Date:
 
Exp Date:
 
Last Updated:
5/4/2011 
Community Sanitation Overview:
Water is derived from a surface source, is treated and stored in a 50,000-gallon redwood tank. Port Graham has a piped water system and sewage disposal in a community septic tank. A sludge lagoon was recently completed. 66 homes and facilities are served by the system; almost 90% of households are fully plumbed. Port Graham Corporation operates the washeteria. The community has requested funds for a new 150,000-gallon water storage tank to provide better treatment and pressure, and to connect Duncan Heights Subdivision to the system. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
A letter was sent to the Port Graham Tribal Council on 12/13/2010, and again on 01/21/2011 requesting updated IRS Tax Release Forms, Finanical Reports for 2010, and operation reports. Offer to help with meeting the unmet indicators was given to the community, and continues to be available.  
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA staff will continue to provide assistance for any capacity indicators that are not being met. A letter requesting updates on the utility, reports, and to offer assistance was sent on January 21, 2011.
Scores:
 
Essential Indicators:
23 of 27
Sustainable Indicators:
20 of 27
Total Score:
43 of 54

Finances

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
No All revenues and expenses for the utility are listed in the utility budget.
No The utility has adopted a balanced realistic budget.
No 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.
Yes A monthly manager's report is prepared.
No Budget amendments are completed and adopted as necessary.
Finances Comments
Although the Port Graham Village Council has program budgets for the tribal program they administer, they currently do not have an adopted water and sewer utility budget for this fiscal year. However, the bookkeeper was the previous water operator for many years. With a combination of her current and previous positions she has a good understanding of the revenue and expenses the water utility incurs and does provide for the council a monthly profit and loss statement. The utility receives power from Homer Electric. All electricity bills are paid on time for the utility. The Port Graham Village Corporation runs the fuel distribution/sales. In the past they have had some difficulty with fuel inventory due to fuel prices. However, the Port Graham Village Council administrator has been successful in negotiating an adequate fuel supply for the utility and village council facilities. The water and sewer revenues are not sufficient to cover operating expenses. Residential customers are charged $20.00 per month for water/wastewater combined. The village council subsidizes its water and sewer utility through the general fund.

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
Section 2.14 of the Port Graham Village Council water and sewer ordinance clearly addresses billing and payment procedures. Section 2.15 addresses discontinuance procedures. Customers in Port Graham are rarely disconnected as they abide by the rules set forth by the council. The Port Graham Village Council utilizes Cougar Mountain accounting software for accounts receivable, accounts payable and payroll. The system is set up properly and has been a tool in keeping the Port Graham Village Councils finances reliable. The chart of accounts identifies fixed assets within the program. The village council implements a purchasing system that requires prior approval from the first chief. A purchase order must be used for items costing $500.00 or more.

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 Cougar Mountain accounting system accurately tracks, calculates and reports payroll tax liabilities. Currently, the IRS Tax Advocate has reported the Port Graham Village Council is in compliance with the IRS. The Department of Labor indicates the village council is also in compliance.

Personnel System

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
No 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 Port Graham Village Council has a posted workers compensation insurance policy through the Alaska National Insurance Company in effect from 1/1/10 to 12/31/10. A request for updated insurance was sent in a letter on 01/21/2011. The utility has adopted and uses a personnel policy. The personnel policy is currently in the process of being reviewed and updated by the council. The Village Council also has the following policies and procedures written and in place: travel, finance, council code of conduct, safety and health. All employee personnel folders contain at minimum, the employee's application, letter of acceptance, employee I-9 and W-4 as well as any disciplinary action or acknowledgment. A separate employee file is kept for the payroll records. The utility has a probationary period for new hires. The probationary period is 90 days. At the end of the probationary period, a personnel evaluation is completed. Evaluations are completed as needed thereafter. Training opportunities for staff are provided as funds allow or opportunities by other sponsors become available.

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 Port Graham Village Council is known as the entity that owns and operates the utility, and is active in policy making for the utility as well as in enforcing the policies they have adopted. The current utility operator and backup operator are trained and have passed the Provisional Level 1 test for water treatment. The main operator has been in his position for five years. The village council has an adopted water and sewer ordinance. Section 2.11 states rates shall be published in a separate Schedule A and on a periodic basis, Schedule A will be revised by the village council. The current water and wastewater rates as shown below: Residential $10 Small commercial $24 Large commercial $100 The utility has adopted a detailed organizational chart that reflects the current structure. A copy of the organizational chart was provided to RUBA staff. Council meetings are held monthly and comply with the Open Meeting Act. RUBA staff has requested an update via a letter sent to the PGTC on 01/21/2011.

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.
No The utility maintains an inventory control list.
No The utility maintains a critical spare parts list.
Operation of Utility Comments
Historically, the utility operator reports to the chief or administrator when there is a problem or he can foresee one. The utility was the second system in the state to receive a newly updated water treatment plant that uses direct filtration with polymer addition. The Port Graham Village Council has prepared and distributed the CCR report for 2009. The utility has met all required drinking water regulations. The utility is not currently on the SNC list. The utility operator attempts to keep needed critical spare parts on hand although control and spare parts lists were not readily available.