Quarterly Report: 2009, July - September (Q1), Goodnews Bay

Community:
Goodnews Bay 
Staff:
Ralph Andrew  
DCRA Regional Office:
 
Gov't Type:
Second Class City 
Borough:
 
Agreement?
No 
Agreement Date:
 
Entity:
City of Goodnews Bay 
Population:
235  
Assessment Status:
 
Assessment Date:
 
Exp Date:
 
Last Updated:
11/17/2008 
Community Sanitation Overview:
The Native Village of Goodnews Bay, under joint management by the Alaska Rural Utility Collaborative, (ARUC) operates a washeteria central watering point, provides for honeybucket haul, and has a sewage lagoon. The tribe, the policy making body for the utility, assumed water/sewer utility management from a community utilty board in August 2005. Currently, treated well water is hauled from the watering point at the washeteria/clinic facility. Most homes are currently not plumbed. A piped water and gravity sewer system with plumbing for 70 + homes is under construction. The project funding is expected to plumb homes including installation of fixtures. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
The Native Village of Goodnews Bay is jointly managing the water/sewer utility with Alaska Rural Utility Collaborative (ARUC). The RUBA assessment of management indicators conducted with ARUC is updated periodically to reflect the current status of RUBA indicators. The community water-sewer project, led by the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium (ANTHC), remains underway and is nearing completion. A sanitation business plan, a special sanitation grant condition under development by a consultant, reportedly is nearly finished. Most of RUBA's contact with Goodnews Bay during the quarter was with city government officials on topics including personnel, payroll, and one inquiry concerning local option elections. 
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA will maintain contact with the Native Village of Goodnews Bay and will check in periodically with ARUC as they strive to maintain compliance with sanitation grant conditions.
Scores:
 
Essential Indicators:
26 of 26
Sustainable Indicators:
24 of 27
Total Score:
50 of 53

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
No The utility is receiving revenues (user fees or other sources sufficient to cover operating expenses and Repair & Replacement (R) costs.
No 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
The utility budget is balanced and realistic. ARUC staff produce monthly financial reports presenting year-to-date activity. ARUC subsidizes the utility when revenues fall short of expenditures, as is presently the case for the month ending August 2008, the most current report provided by ARUC. In prior quarters, ARUC was working with the village council to improve utility customer collections.

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
Utility billing continues through services provided by ANTHC. ARUC operates under a standard water/sewer ordinance that includes a collections policy. ARUC maintains a workers compensation policy and uses computerized accounting to monitor and track finances.

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.
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 the IRS Taxpayer Advocate Service dated October 10, 2008, the ARUC was meeting federal tax obligations. On October 14, 2008 the Alaska Department of Labor confirmed compliance with Alaska ESC tax obligations for the quarter ending June 30, 2008.

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
Workers compensation insurance coverage is current. ARUC abides by a comprehensive personnel policy.

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
ARUC oversees water-sewer utility management with the village council and actively enforces utility policy and operates under a water/sewer ordinance. Billing services continue to be handled by ARUC. The water operator is trained.

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".
No 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 primary water operator possesses required certification. The operator utilizes a preventative maintenance plan and provides reports to the ARUC utility manager. According to an Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (ADEC) report dated August 8, 2008, the utility is presently on the SNC list for failure to submit a waiver renewal for SOC/OOC. RUBA recommends return to compliance in accordance with options set forth by ADEC.