Quarterly Report: 2011, January - March (Q3), Eek

Community:
Eek 
Staff:
Eli Jacobson  
DCRA Regional Office:
 
Gov't Type:
Second Class City 
Borough:
 
Agreement?
No 
Agreement Date:
 
Entity:
City of Eek 
Population:
272  
Assessment Status:
 
Assessment Date:
 
Exp Date:
 
Last Updated:
5/4/2011 
Community Sanitation Overview:
The City of Eek, Public Works Department, operates the washeteria, water treatment plant, and provides honey-bucket services to the community. The City Council is the policy making body for the utility services. Water is derived from the Eek River. The plant is the citys sole source of potable water for its 282 residents. The plant has water and sewer lines to the school as well as the health clinic. The rest of the town can get water by use of a coin operated watering point located at the plant. The water is filtered, treated, and stored in a holding tank by the water treatment plant/washeteria. A new water treatment plant is complete and is in use. The sewage from the health clinic and school is piped into a sewage lagoon. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
On Friday February 25, 2011 Fritz Petluska, city clerk, came to the Bethel Regional office for RUBA assistance. The clerk provided documentation that met more of the essential indicators in the area of finance and organizational management. A copy of the compliance guide to the indicators was provided to the city clerk. RUBA staff went over the remaining seven deficient essential indicators in the areas of finance, accounting, and organizational management and explained what is necessary for Eek to come into RUBA compliance. On Monday, February 28, 2011 RUBA staff called the remote maintenance worker about the health clinic water and wastewater lines. The health clinic's water wastewater lines have frozen the last three winters. Eek does not bill the clinic during the month the line is frozen. The water wastewater lines are owned by the tribe, and a plan is in place to have the lines ready for next winter. On March 11, 2011 RUBA staff and the city clerk discussed via phone the remaining seven essential indicators necessary for Eek to come into RUBA compliance. On Thursday March 31, 2011 LGS John Nickels and Eli Jacobson met with the city clerk of Eek by teleconference. We discussed in detail the remaining seven essential indicators that Eek needs to complete to come into RUBA compliance. The city clerk said that he would fax the documents to the Bethel office.  
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
Ruba staff will continue to work with the City of Eek on the remaining essential and sustainable indicators that need to be resolved.
Scores:
 
Essential Indicators:
23 of 27
Sustainable Indicators:
14 of 27
Total Score:
37 of 54

Finances

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
No 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
Eek has an adopted city budget that has utility expenses and revenue listed in it. As of February 28, 2011 it is missing a line item for income from the health clinic which generates over $9,000 annually when billed for the full twelve months. When the health clinic water and sewer line freezes up Eek does not bill for that time. The maximum annual billing to clinic has been $6,000. The revenue from the washeteria this year will be about $12,000 more than the $60,000 budgeted. The budgeted amount for the schools billing is $36,000. The city is also subsidizing the utility $30,000 from the community revenue sharing. This sets the total revenue for the utility at $144,000. The utility expenditures are $125,000. The city budget has revenues greater than expenditures. Monthly financial reports are prepared and submitted to the city council by the city clerk. RUBA staff contacted Alaska Village Electric Cooperative (AVEC) on April 12, 2011. AVEC stated that the City of Eek is current on electric bills. The city has on hand a one year supply of fuel. A repair and replacement account has not been established. Monthly managers reports are done verbally by the city clerk at the council meetings, and budget amendments are done as necessary.

Accounting Systems

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
No 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.
No 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 City of Eek does not have a written utility collection policy adopted into city code. RUBA staff viewed cash receipts from the washeteria. QuickBooks is used to do accounts receivable, accounts payable,payroll and taxes. The city clerk uses a manual system for some of the accounting. The city clerk enters expenses into QuickBooks and has an informal system of comparing it to their bank account by phone. The city clerk makes purchases with verbal approval from the mayor but there is no written policy. Eek has a detailed chart of 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
A form requesting release of federal tax information from was sent to the IRS and the IRS verified that Eek is current on Federal taxes. The Alaska Department of Labor (DOL) was contacted on March 16, 2011 and DOL verified that the City of Eek is current on their Employment Security Contributions account. The City of Eek is not on the Lien Watch dated January-February 2011.

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.
No 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.
No 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.
No 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
Eek's workers compensation insurance is through the Alaska Municipal League Joint Insurance Association, Inc for the period from July 1, 2010 through July 1, 2011. Portions of the personnel policy were found in the parks and recreation instruction manual. Written job descriptions were not available. Eek does a written evaluation of all personnel at the end of a ninety day probationary period. Eek did not have a written hiring policy. On the job training and additional training is provided as necessary. Staff are encouraged to pursue professional training opportunities.

Organizational Management

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
Yes The entity that owns the utility is known; the entity that will operate the utility is set.
No The policy making body is active in policy making of the utility.
No 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.
No The utility complies with the open meeting act for all meetings.
Organizational Management Comments
The city owns the washeteria and water plant. City employees operate these utilities. The city council is the policy making body. The current personnel policy needs to be adopted. The city clerk, Fritz Petluska, performs managerial and bookkeeping duties and also supervises the utility operators and answers to the city council. Fritz Petluska has been to QuickBooks training. The utility has an adopted utility ordinance. RUBA staff was shown an organizational chart that provides the current structure but there was no documentation of its adoption. The policy making body meets the second Thursday of each month and the meetings are open to the public. Meetings are posted in the post office, washeteria, clinic, and the main store permanently and not routinely posted. Because of this, special meetings might not be given sufficient notice.

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.
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.
No The utility maintains an inventory control list.
Yes The utility maintains a critical spare parts list.
Operation of Utility Comments
The utility has two operators. Adolph Carter is a full time employee and has his level one certification. Fritz Petluska said he will be sending him to level two training the in spring. Joshua James is a part time employee who has a provisional certification. Fritz said he will be sending him to level one training in the spring. The utility operators provided a copy of the preventative maintenance plan. The city clerk is in daily contact with the utility operators who report to him. The utility has a safety manual but regular safety meetings are not held. The utility is functioning as intended and no major outages have occurred. The CCR has been posted and a copy has been provided to RUBA. The city is not on the SNC list dated July 2010. The utility does not have an inventory control list but does maintain a critical spare parts list in their operation and maintenance manual.