Quarterly Report: 2007, January - March (Q3), Ekwok

Community:
Ekwok 
Staff:
Ralph Andrew  
DCRA Regional Office:
 
Gov't Type:
Second Class City 
Borough:
 
Agreement?
No 
Agreement Date:
 
Entity:
City of Ekwok 
Population:
118  
Assessment Status:
 
Assessment Date:
 
Exp Date:
 
Last Updated:
5/1/2007 
Community Sanitation Overview:
Individual wells provide water for the majority of the community. Approximately 20 HUD homes have individual wells and a piped septic system. The City operates a piped sewage system with sewage lift station, which connects to approximately 16 additional residences. The remaining homes use septic systems or a flush/haul system; a sewage pumper is available. Thirty six of 42 homes have complete plumbing. The community needs a washeteria with a water source and treatment system. Landfill services are available at no charge. Ekwok Electric, a city-owned utility, provides electricity. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
RUBA continued attempts to contact the city administrator to offer assistance with resolution of deficient RUBA Assessment indicators. RUBA met briefly with the mayor who sounds receptive to onsite assistance which RUBA will offer this quarter. Several RUBA Indicators are in various stages of improvement including payroll processing, collections, and policy enforcement. During the quarter, the Village Safe Water (VSW) engineer visited Ekwok to check construction status and meet with the city council. Project progress was reported to be satisfactory. 
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA will continue efforts to contact city staff and offer onsite assistance with resolution of deficient RUBA Assessment indicators.
Scores:
 
Essential Indicators:
15 of 16
Sustainable Indicators:
15 of 21
Total Score:
30 of 37

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.
N/A Monthly financial reports are prepared and submitted to the policy making board.
N/A 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.
N/A The utility is receiving revenues (user fees or other sources) sufficient to cover operating expenses.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
N/A The utility is receiving revenues (user fees or other sources sufficient to cover operating expenses and Repair & Replacement (R) costs.
N/A YTD revenues are at a level equal to or above those budgeted.
N/A YTD expenditures are at a level equal to or below those budgeted.
No A monthly manager's report is prepared.
Yes Budget amendments are completed and adopted as necessary.
Finances Comments
The current water/sewer budget is balanced and realistic. RUBA awaits confirmation from the city concerning whether revenues are sufficient to cover expenses and whether electric bills are current.

Accounting Systems

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
N/A The utility has adopted a collection policy and actively follows it.
N/A 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.
N/A 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
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
The utility is now billing customers with a sewer line connection, however, RUBA awaits confirmation of accounts receivable as it relates to billing and successful collections. Concerning payroll, calculations appeared inconsistent during RUBA's prior visits to the community. RUBA continues to be available to review the city administrator's payroll calculations prior to each pay period to help ensure compliance with tax obligations.

Tax Problems

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
N/A The utility has a system to accurately calculate, track, and report payroll tax liabilities.
N/A The utility is current on filing tax reports.
N/A 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
The IRS confirmed July 21, 2006 that the city is complying with federal tax obligations. RUBA will request the city provide approval for RUBA to review more current tax compliance data available from the Internal Revenue Service. RUBA remains available to review the city's payroll spreadsheets prior to each pay period.

Personnel System

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
N/A The utility has a posted workers compensation insurance policy in effect.
Sustainable Indicators
Answer Question
No 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.
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
Worker's Compensation coverage has been purchased through AML/JIA however, RUBA has been unable to confirm whether the coverage is current. With documentation from the city confirming coverage the RUBA indicator pertaining to worker's compensation will be satisfied.

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.
N/A 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 city owns and operates the water/sewer system and maintains a water/sewer ordinance in city code. RUBA awaits confirmation of the status of water/sewer billing and collections. The city administrator serves as utility manager and the electric utility manager serves as the water operator, both of whom are trained and experienced. Council meeting minutes are kept and could improve with more consistently preparation and filing.

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.
N/A The utility has completed and distributed its "Consumer Confidence Report".
N/A 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 city is not required to have a certified water operator or wastewater operator, so that specific indicator is marked yes. The fuel utility manager serves as a council member and as water operator. The preventative maintenance plan identifies operational information based on original system design. The city's watering point, located at city hall, should be added to policy and the budgeting process.