Quarterly Report: 2010, July - September (Q1), Savoonga

Community:
Savoonga 
Staff:
Leroy Seppilu  
DCRA Regional Office:
 
Gov't Type:
Second Class City 
Borough:
 
Agreement?
No 
Agreement Date:
 
Entity:
City of Savoonga 
Population:
712  
Assessment Status:
 
Assessment Date:
 
Exp Date:
 
Last Updated:
11/6/2009 
Community Sanitation Overview:
The City of Savoonga turned over its financial management control of the water and sewer utility to Alaska Rural Utilities Collaborative (ARUC)about two years ago. The city's water is piped down from a well about a mile south of the community. Most of the homes are connected to the water and sewer utility system. The utility sells treated water to the school. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
The city participates in Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium/Alaska Rural Utility Collaborative program. Before joining, the city had major problems with collections. The city closed down the washeteria because it was operating at a loss. The city also dissolved its utility board completely. Under management of ANTHC/ARUC, Savoonga now meets all essential management indicators. 
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA staff has been requested to travel to the city to work with the city council to revise the code of ordinances in November, 2009.
Scores:
 
Essential Indicators:
27 of 27
Sustainable Indicators:
27 of 27
Total Score:
54 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
To date, the Savoonga water/sewer utility has a collection rate of 76%. ARUC pays for all the utilities on time. ARUC has adopted a fairly detailed budget that lists all the revenues to be received and expenses to be incurred. ARUC makes the monthly financial report to the Savoonga City Council on time and regularly.

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
ARUC bills customers consistently. ARUC operates under an agreement with the city and their water/waster ordinance incluses a collections policy. ARUC uses computerized accounting to monitor and track finances. ARUC maintains accounting records including accounts payable, receivable, and payroll under direction of a utility manager based in their central Anchorage office. ARUC maintains a chart of accounts, reconciles bank accounts, and utilizes a purchasing system that requires approval prior to purchase.

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 IRS reported that ARUC, the managing entity for this utility, is compliant with federal tax reporting and deposit requirements. The Alaska Department of Labor (DOL) confirmed ARUC is meeting Alaska ESC tax obligations for the quarter. ARUC uses accounting software to process payroll out of their Anchorage office.

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 City Council of Savoonga has requested RUBA staff to assist with revising the city's code of ordinances, including the personnel policies. The city council and RUBA will also incorporate ARUC's water/sewer utility ordinance into the city's revised code of ordinances.

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 city council acted as the utility board of the city's water/sewer utility department, although complete control of the utility system has now been handed over to Alaska Rural Utility Collaborative. A representative from Savoonga will be on the advisory board for ARUC. RUBA staff will assist the city council to incorporate ARUC's water/sewer utility (which gives it complete control of the utility) into the city proposed revised code of ordinances.

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.
Yes 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.
Yes The utility maintains an inventory control list.
Yes The utility maintains a critical spare parts list.
Operation of Utility Comments
The utility is not on the SNC list, according to the latest report. The utility has very detailed inventory control and spare part lists. The operator utilizes a preventative maintenance plan and provides reports to the ARUC utility manager.