Quarterly Report: 2007, April - June (Q4), Ekwok

Ralph Andrew  
DCRA Regional Office:
Gov't Type:
Second Class City 
Agreement Date:
City of Ekwok 
Assessment Status:
Assessment Date:
Exp Date:
Last Updated:
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 was in contact with the city administrator throughout the quarter to offer assistance with resolution of RUBA Assessment indicators during the quarter. The administrator is presently reviewing a draft FY 2008 city budget and a draft certified financial statements for the current fiscal year, both of which he plans to insert into a standardized format published by the state Division of Community Advocacy. Several RUBA Indicators remain in various stages of improvement including payroll processing, collections, and policy enforcement. 
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA will continue offering support to city staff to assist with RUBA Essential indicators and will plan travel to conduct a re-Assessment in the coming months.
Essential Indicators:
22 of 26
Sustainable Indicators:
15 of 21
Total Score:
37 of 47


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
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. Water/sewer revenues, with support from a subsidy identified as gravel sales, are sufficient to cover utility expenses. Year-to-date customer revenues are falling short of budget but expenditures are also coming in lower than expected. Electric bills are current and the utility has an adequate fuel supply on hand.

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.
No 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 billing customers with a sewer line connection. Staff monitor accounts receivable and payable with spreadsheets. Concerning payroll, federal tax obligations are not being met but the administrator is reviewing prior quarters' reports and submittals to resolve the matter. 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
No The utility has a system to accurately calculate, track, and report payroll tax liabilities.
No The utility is current on filing tax reports.
No The utility is current on making tax deposits.
N/A 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 a report dated June 27, 2007 IRS report to RUBA, the city is not presently in compliance with all federal tax obligations. The city administrator is working to resolve the tax problems. RUBA remains available to review the city's payroll spreadsheets prior to each pay period and will offer ongoing assistance with resolution of tax problems.

Personnel System

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes 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
City records show Workers' Compensation coverage through July 1, 2008.

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
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 which includes a collections policy. Utility collections have improved but still appear to be coming in under budget. 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.