Quarterly Report: 2008, January - March (Q3), Platinum

Ralph Andrew  
DCRA Regional Office:
Gov't Type:
Federally Recognized Tribe 
Agreement Date:
Platinum Traditional Village 
Assessment Status:
Assessment Date:
Exp Date:
Last Updated:
Community Sanitation Overview:
Nine households and the public school are connected to a piped water system and operate private septic sewage systems. Nine households access water from a public watering points and operate private septic systems. The remaining households, roughly eight, access water from public watering points and dispose of honeybucket waste in private seepage pits. The public water system distributes untreated water. A washeteria constructed in recent years is not in use but may be completed as early as summer 2008. A state Village Safe Water Water/Sewer and Solid Waste Feasibility Study was funded in FY 2003 to assess water, sewer and solid waste needs including a water storage tank, new water treatment plant, connections and plumbing, sludge disposal site, and landfill. The water/sewer system renovation project, with assistance from Village Safe Water, is in design and construction will start as early as summer 2009. The City operates the electric utility and landfill. Community fuel storage capacity is as follows: Arviq village corporation. (67,100 gals.); City Power Plant (5,600); Lower Kuskokwim Schools (7,000). 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
RUBA traveled to Platinum in March 2008 to provide onsite assistance and review RUBA Assessment Management Indicators. Village council staff continue to maintain satisfactory RUBA essential indicators and maintain contact with the Village Safe Water engineer and Remote Maintenance Worker based at Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation. The village council is presently satisfying all of the RUBA Essential Indicators. Concerning city-operated utilities, RUBA provided assistance to city officials during the quarter with budgeting and assembly of certified financial statements. With completion of the FY 2008 budget, the city can now access much-needed FY 2008 state energy assistance fundings. 
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA maintains contact with the village council as they work to maintain satisfactory RUBA essential indicators. RUBA plans to finalize a RUBA workplan jointly with the village council. The workplan is an outcome-oriented tasklist intended to facilitate ongoing capacity development.
Essential Indicators:
27 of 27
Sustainable Indicators:
19 of 27
Total Score:
46 of 54


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.
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 village council's calendar-year 2008 water/sewer budget, adopted in December 2007 is balanced and realistic. Budgeted revenues exceed budgeted expenditures and as such, RUBA recommends any available surplus be set aside for repair and replacement costs. Year-to-date revenues are presently covering operating expenditures. Staff consistently provide financial and operational reports to the village council. Staff uses QuickBooks accounting software and spreadsheet-based financial reports provided by RUBA.

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
The village council serves as the utility board and enforces the water/sewer ordinance including a collections policy. Staff use QuickBooks accounting software for bookkeeping including payroll processing. Staff abide by a procurement process that requires approval prior to purchase. RUBA continues to recommend consistent monthly reconcilation of all bank accounts.

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
According to the IRS Taxpayer Advocate Service on March 17, 2008, the village council is presently meeting federal tax obligations.

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.
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 village council workers' compensation insurance coverage is current through March 25, 2008. Staff utilizes a comprehensive personnel policy and are presently reviewing its content to ensure it meets current standards. Personnel recordkeeping improved in recent quarters and RUBA recommends further improvements with respect to personnel record filing.

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 village council actively sets utility policy. RUBA encourages the council to continue inviting the public to participate in matters related to the public water/sewer system. The village administrator is presently seeking a qualified alternate water operator to facilitate staffing continuity. Administrative staff are trained and are granted access to training opportunities by the village council. The council meets regularly and has expressed ongoing desire to maintain compliance with sanitation grant conditions.

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.
No 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
A trained water operator continues to oversee the work of a newly hired water operator. The utility remains listed on the Significant Non-Complier (SNC) list for a Surface Water Treatment Rule Unfiltered violation but is actively seeking system improvements that will facilitate compliance. The utility timely submitted its 2006 Consumer Confidence Report. The water operator utilizes a checklist of operational requirements provided by the Remote Maintenance Worker and indicated plans to identify an inventory control list and critical spare parts list.