Quarterly Report: 2014, April - June (Q4), Kiana

Margaret Hansen  
DCRA Regional Office:
Kotzebue regional office 
Gov't Type:
Second Class City 
Northwest Arctic Borough 
Agreement Date:
City of Kiana 
406 2013 DCCED Certified Estimate 
Assessment Status:
Assessment Completed 
Assessment Date:
Exp Date:
Last Updated:
Community Sanitation Overview:
The City of Kiana operates the piped water and sewer system and maintains a central watering point where residents come to haul water to their residences. The City also maintains honeybucket pits and a sewage lagoon. The City Council is the policy making body for the utility. A 200,000-gallon steel tank is intermittently filled from two wells near the Kobuk River. Water is chlorinated prior to distribution through buried water mains. Kiana maintains a 6-inch buried gravity sewer system, which drains to a lift station and is pumped through a buried force main to the sewage treatment lagoon northeast of the village. A few households haul water and use honeybuckets or septic tanks. The landfill is located west of the sewage disposal lagoon. ANTHC plans on hiring a construction foreman to construct the force main realignment and repairs project in July 2014. They will also deliver a pumper truck by September 2014. Kiana is an ARUC community. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
Kotzebue LGS staff traveled to Kiana on April 30, 2014 and met with the city clerk and bookkeeper upon arrival. The group discussed the paperwork needed to qualify for their FY15 Community Revenue Sharing (CRS). The clerk found the application, the bookkeeper provided me with a copy of their certified financial report that was passed and submitted and a draft FY15 budget. In addition LGS staff received their March 2014 monthly financial report. The city clerk emailed the Mayor on the budget for the CRS application. The mayor responded allowing the clerk, who was now the acting administrator, to complete the application, sign and send it in. The clerk mailed the application certified receipt that day. In the afternoon, LGS staff provided the clerk with a copy of their code of ordinances that the council requested the clerk and LGS to review in order to provide comments for changes to the city council. For the next two days city and LGS staff reviewed the code in its entirety making notes onto the copy of suggested changes and started making the necessary first draft changes on the newly revised code of ordinances.. The acting administrator had asked for the LGS to provide advice as to how to proceed with the land lottery of the early 90’s where if winners did not comply with the requirements to build within two years or the land would revert back to the city. Kotzebue LGS will collect ordinance and paperwork for the lottery information and get back to the staff and council in writing. Kotzebue LGS staff also reviewed the budget documents and personnel policies for suggested changes. On May 2, LGS staff and the acting administrator met with the mayor to go over the work done on the ordinances, and the next steps in order to pass and approve the newly revised code. LGS staff also discussed the fuel quotes needed in order to complete the bulk fuel loan application and the FY 15 budget. The mayor sent a message to Crowley requesting an updated quote for 70,000 gallons of diesel and 40,000 gallons of unleaded gasoline. The bookkeeper stated that the city will be able to pay for $100,000.00 of the fuel order so the rest should be applied for in the bulk fuel loan.The acting administrator was very happy with the assistance and training provided. Work that needs to be done on the code and the budget was outlined for follow-up and completion.. The acting administrator will continue working on making the changes identified onto the first draft of the new code and send the completed draft to me before it goes to the council for review. Kotzebue staff responded to an email regarding a dog bite inside a business which included the store owners dog and a child. Apparently the child is ok but was biten on the head. The administrator wanted to know what to do about it. I referred her to their ordinances, if there is provision in the ordinance to require dog shots, then she can contact the owner to discuss that with them, and that she may want to get the whole situation in writing from the parent if they wanted to pursue anything further. The ordinance may require the situation be looked into to further determine if this dog did in fact have the characterization of a vicious dog. The ordinance may elude to that. Kotzebue staff worked with the bookkeeper over the last month to finalize the FY 15 budget which included creating a salary scale for the council to determine the amount of annual raises for employees. The council passed their budget which include opening a liquor package store. This was an option given the city which the voters passed at the 2012 election.  
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
Kotzebue staff has been requested to travel back to Kiana once an administrator is hired.
Essential Indicators:
27 of 27
Sustainable Indicators:
25 of 26
Total Score:
52 of 53


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.
N/A Budget amendments are completed and adopted as necessary.
Finances Comments
The balanced budget includes all the revenues and expenses for the utility that the council receives from ARUC on a monthly a basis. The monthly report shows that they are current in paying their electric bills, they purchased fuel delivered by barge to last until next barge season and that they are receiving enough revenues to cover operating expenses. Their collection rate is 89%. Although their revenues and expenditures are equal to those budget, they do not have enough funds for major repair and replacement. No budget amendment is needed at this time.

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 the customers on a monthly basis following the adopted collection policy and provides the plant operator with a list of disconnects. They have a system in place that accounts for receivables, payables, payroll and cash using the budget as a chart of accounts. ARUC reviews the most current monthly financial report, completed bank reconciliation and the budget before purchases are made. The budget, which is used as their chart of accounts, identifies categories in a reasonable, usuable manner.

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
ARUC provided a completed tax authorization from IRS showing they meet all essential indicators. The city is not on the Lien Watch List.

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
ARUC has insurance coverage until October 2014. The city uses AMLJIA as their insurance company which is paid in effect until June 2014 but plans to pay their new insurance in full once they receive the invoice. ARUC has an updated personnel policy in place that includes a process for evaluations (using the job description), hiring, and probationary period. ARUC pay for their operators to attend all training available to get them certified and send their utility staff to any RUBA training offered as needed.

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 is the known entity who has adopted the necessary ordinances to give it authority and works with ARUC to ensure that they are active and enforce policy. They follow the adopted organizational chart, and meet monthly as required complying with the open meetings act. The city has one plant operator who received his water distribution provisional.

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 water plant operator has his provisional for water distribution, and plans to attend the next training session to receive more certifications. The Manager and council receives a monthly O and M report and routinely spot checks the facilities to make sure items are being completed. The operator provides to the administrator a report on a routine basis and works with ARUC to maintain the inventory and critical spare parts list. They are not on the SNC list.