Quarterly Report: 2009, July - September (Q1), Circle

Community:
Circle 
Staff:
Leroy Seppilu  
DCRA Regional Office:
 
Gov't Type:
Federally Recognized Tribe 
Borough:
 
Agreement?
No 
Agreement Date:
 
Entity:
Circle Native Community 
Population:
90  
Assessment Status:
 
Assessment Date:
 
Exp Date:
 
Last Updated:
11/17/2008 
Community Sanitation Overview:
Most homes haul treated well water from the washeteria/fire station or the school. Outhouses and honeybuckets are used for sewage disposal. All homes lack plumbing facilities. A feasibility study and master plan is underway to examine infrastructure alternatives. The landfill is located at mi. 156.5 Steese Hwy. Electricity is provided by Circle Electric Inc. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
Numerous attempts to contact Circle Traditional Council 1st chief were made by Fairbanks RUBA staff. During the last visit, the 1st chief and the tribal council had agreed to work with the Fairbanks RUBA staff to meet the essential and sustainable indicators identified in the RUBA Assessment made on October, 2007. A plan and timeline had been made and agreed to between RUBA staff and the tribe. The plan was to meet all or most of the indicators by September, 2008. A $2.8 million sanitation project is on hold due to the fact that the RUBA Assessment was not passed by the village. 
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA staff still has difficulty making contact with the 1st chief and the acting tribal adminstrator. RUBA staff hopes to travel to the community at least two more times to assist the tribe meet the essential and sustainable indicators. The 1st chief is very difficult to get a hold of since he is a member of several regional organizations in the Interior and constantly travels.
Scores:
 
Essential Indicators:
14 of 27
Sustainable Indicators:
14 of 26
Total Score:
28 of 53

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.
No 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
A water/washeteria department budget was made by RUBA staff as an example for the tribal council to review and eventually use. The financial report showed a very high deficit between the revenues and expenditures of the washeteria. The electrcity and fuel bills are paid by Tanana Chiefs' Conference. Rate increases for water sales to the school and individual users (with water tanks) were recommended, including shower, washer and dryer uses. To date, the tribe has not implemented the recommendations.

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.
No 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.
N/A 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
All or most of the tribe's finances continue to be handled by TCC staff. RUBA staff recommended to the tribe to ask TCC to provide financial and status reports as none are currently delivered.

Tax Problems

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
No The utility has a system to accurately calculate, track, and report payroll tax liabilities.
No The utility is current on filing tax reports.
No The utility is current on making tax deposits.
No 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
RUBA staff continues to encourage the tribe to make effort to set up a payment plan with IRS.

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 positon for the tribal administrator is still open.

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.
No The utility has an adequately trained manager.
No The utility has an adequately trained bookkeeper.
No 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
The tribal council 1st chief told RUBA staff that there was one applicant for the tribal administrator position that looks promising. However, there is no word of whether or not this person has been hired.

Operation of Utility

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The utility operator(s) are actively working towards necessary certification.
No 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.
Yes The utility has completed and distributed its "Consumer Confidence Report".
No 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 Tribe provides a watering point at the washeteria for the residents to use for drinking water. The Tribe will need to start charging residents who obtain large amounts of water for their residential water tanks. We estimate the usage of treated water to be about 3-400 gallons a week.