Quarterly Report: 2007, October - December (Q2), Scammon Bay

Community:
Scammon Bay 
Staff:
Paul Chimiugak  
DCRA Regional Office:
 
Gov't Type:
Second Class City 
Borough:
 
Agreement?
No 
Agreement Date:
 
Entity:
City of Scammon Bay 
Population:
509  
Assessment Status:
 
Assessment Date:
 
Exp Date:
 
Last Updated:
1/23/2007 
Community Sanitation Overview:
The City operates the piped water and sewer system. Water is derived from an infiltration gallery located on a small stream south of the City, is treated and stored in a 100,000-gal. tank. The City Council is the policy making body for the utility. Nearly all homes and the school are connected to the piped water and sewer system and are plumbed. Only a few residents use honeybuckets, typically due to frozen pipe damage. There is no washeteria. A new landfill and access road were recently completed, but funds are needed for equipment. AVEC and the City are interested in developing a small hydroelectric plant. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
On August 3, 2006, Paul Chimiugak, Bethel LGS/RUBA met with Scammon Bay staff to complete a RUBA Assessment of Management Capacity Indicators. There are currently 64 homes, 5 institutions connected to the Water and Sewer piped system. The Lower Yukon School District is charged a flat rate of $3,000.00 a month. 
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA staff will assist the utility to: ' Enforce the collection policy. ' Establish a Repair and Replacement account. ' Complete and adopt budget amendments as necessary. ' Adopt a purchasing system that requires prior approval and compares purchases to budgeted amounts. ' Return to compliance with all DEC water regulations. ' Draft and adopt an inventory control and critical spare parts list
Scores:
 
Essential Indicators:
23 of 27
Sustainable Indicators:
21 of 27
Total Score:
44 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 Council has adopted the FY07 Budget. The City received their fuel order in September 2006. The City has paid $16,933.04 and they have about $8,000.00 left to pay on the fuel loan. Monthly financial reports are done using a recommended RUBA format. About half of the customers are delinquent on payment for the water/sewer services. The utility is subsidized with general funds. The Water/Sewer rates are as follows: Residential......$30.00 @ Month Commercial.......$150.00 @ Month School...........$3,000.00 @ Month The manager said that he makes verbal reports to the Council during meetings and they are recorded in the minutes of the meeting. Bethel RUBA staff recommended to the manager to start making written reports to the Council for the record.

Accounting Systems

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
No 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
About half of the customers are delinquent on payment for the water/sewer services. The City has purchased Dell computers, and use Windows 2003 with QuickBooks Pro Premier 2006 software for accounting transactions. All customer records and files are kept on the computer. Cash receipts are recorded manually using the NEBS system, and then recorded into the computer. Cash disbursement is carried out and documented using the computer. The city needs to set-up a good purchasing procedure. The Bethel staff will provide a procedure for the City to consider.

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
Bethel staff has a signed IRS Tax information release from the community on file. There are no problems with IRS. The last response from IRS was that the City is in compliance. All quarterly reports are printed automatically through the computer. The City is also current with the State ESC reports, except for the second quarter report in which they owe a small amount of $11.04 which will be credited to their next report for payment.

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.
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.
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 City will pay for their insurance in the amount of $17,250.24 as soon as they have funds for it. The hiring of employees is based on merit and the qualifications of the applicant. The notice for a job opening is posted in three different places, which includes job title, duties, minimum qualifications, rate of pay, and end of recruitment period. The notice is posted for at least two weeks or until filled. There is no local preference; the positions are filled based on merit and qualifications of the applicant. There is a three month probationary period from the time of hire. The probationary period is also a time of training and orientation and at the end of the probationary period they are given an evaluation by the immediate supervisor.

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.
No 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
The Council needs to start enforcing the collections policy in order to lower the delinquency rate and meet the essential indicator. The Interim Manager has a B.A. in Humanities, which includes Economics and Sociology, and was a finance specialist in the military. The Bookkeeper is a high school graduate with QuickBooks training, (Introduction and Advanced) and has attended a UTM class in planning management. The Bookkeeper has held the position with the City for the past several years. The Interim Manager is working on the organizational chart.

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
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.
No 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 current Water Treatment Plant (WTP) operator is not certified. He went to an Operator in Training (OIT) class, but did not pass the test, and there are plans to send him to another OIT class. The WTP operator actively makes minor repairs on the lines when needed and constantly makes progress reports to the Interim Manager. The City is hoping to renovate the WTP to operate more efficiently. There are two homes without service due to freeze up last winter on their section of the line. Without enough revenue to operate the utility, there are no spare parts to make repairs if there is a break down, other then to rely on outside agencies to assist them, such as Yukon Kuskoquim Health Corporation/Remote Maintainance Worker and Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium or Village Safe Water. According to the Environmental Specialist for this region, Scammon Bay is on the Significant Non-Compliance list for Total Coliform Rule (TCR), the Surface Water Treatment Rule, Stage 1 disinfectant By-Products Rule, Nitrate, Inorganics, Volatile Organic Chemicals, Arsenic, and Radionuclides. The Environmental Specialist wrote a letter dated March 6, 2006, to the City notifying them of the overdue testing for the Scammon Bay public water system. Under the Surface Water Treatment Rule, the system needs to install necessary treatment equipment (filtration and disinfection) in the water treatment plant. The City has signed a bilateral compliance agreement with DEC to get the utility system into compliance.