Quarterly Report: 2007, July - September (Q1), Iliamna

John Nickels  
DCRA Regional Office:
Gov't Type:
Federally Recognized Tribe 
Agreement Date:
Village of Iliamna 
Assessment Status:
Assessment Date:
Exp Date:
Last Updated:
Community Sanitation Overview:
Iliamna residents are using individual water wells and septic systems. 85% of homes are fully plumbed. A 270' well provides water to the community building/village office/washeteria. The washeteria is small -- only one washer and dryer are reportedly available. Septic pumping services are provided by the Village. Sewage is transported by the Village or individuals to the sewage lagoon. The INN Electric Cooperative owns a diesel plant in Newhalen and 50 miles of distribution line to connect the three communities. The Tazimina Hydroelectric Project powers Iliamna, Newhalen and Nondalton. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
Anchorage RUBA staff contacted Village Administrator Lisa Reimer by email in July to request an update on the community's wastewater project and to offer assistance. There had been no contact since sending her a list of deficient indicators in February at her request. In July, RUBA indicators needing attention included creation of a utility budget, obtaining worker's compensation insurance, and evidence of IRS compliance, financial reports, and a collection policy. These items were listed and explained in an email, with an offer to meet and discuss them further. RUBA staff was later advised by phone that the items would be presented to the council, and there has been no further contact.  
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA will continue to offer assistance to the Village Council to resolve essential indicator recommendations and will develop a workplan with the Council upon request.
Essential Indicators:
19 of 23
Sustainable Indicators:
25 of 26
Total Score:
44 of 49


Essential Indicators
Answer Question
No All revenues and expenses for the utility are listed in the utility budget.
No The utility has adopted a balanced realistic budget.
No 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.
N/A 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
Yes 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
The utility operating budget is currently incorporated into the entity budget. RUBA recommended a separate budget to facilitate management of the landfill, sewage lagoon and septic tank pumping/hauling service. Village Council staff are presently assembling a separate budget for RUBA review. The monthly manager report to the governing body appears to be a verbal report. RUBA received a copy of a recent report pulled from a copy of the Village Council meeting minutes. The bookkeeper utilizes Quickbooks Pro for the Village Council accounting and bookkeeping functions.

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.
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
Elements of a user fee collection policy for sanitation services appear in an ordinance #2000-1. User fees are listed for landfill, sewage lagoon, and septic pumping/hauling service however payment terms are not explicitly noted. RUBA recommends a written comprehensive collection policy. Staff stated bills are sent monthly. RUBA requested and obtained a copy of an actual invoice for septic pumping and hauling services. Sewage lagoon rates are the same for residents and businesses at $120/load if hauled by the village council and $1,000/load if hauled privately. Landfill rates are $150/year residential, $1,500 year-round commercial operators, and $3,500/year for seasonal commercial operators. Staff estimated annual lagoon and landfill revenue at $25,000. Until a budget along expenditures and revenues can be reviewed, RUBA was unable to determine the current status of collections. Accounts receivable collections are tracked using a detailed invoice form and a Quickbooks billing method that identifies customer accounts and assigns invoice numbers. RUBA reviewed Quickbooks Pro accounts with the bookkeeper. Concerning bank reconciliations, the bookkeeper indicated the primary bank account is reconciled regularly. Staff utilize a purchase order system and forms. RUBA obtained a copy of an actual purchase order. Staff utilize an accounts payable system and invoice forms. Staff use Quickbooks Pro accounting software to process payroll.

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
The Village Council appears to be current on filing federal and state tax reports. RUBA obtained copies of the IRS Form 941 for the last four quarters ending June 2005. RUBA obtained a copy of the Alaska ESC Quarterly Contribution report for 2004, quarter 4 paid January 26, 2005. At RUBAs request, the IRS supplied RUBA with a response to a confirmation of compliance report on August 16, 2005. The response indicates the Village Council is in compliance with filing requirements, does not have any federal tax liens against it, but owed money for the quarter ending June 2005. RUBA then received from the community faxed copies of the IRS report and a check for the amount owed indicating resolution of the problem.

Personnel System

Essential Indicators
Answer Question
N/A 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.
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.
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
According to staff, the Village Council recently paid for Workers Compensation insurance. A copy of the Employer's Notice of Insurance was later received by RUBA. The landfill operator job description and duties is incorporated into the draft Operational Plan. RUBA recommended a stand-alone document for the employee files. RUBA recommended a formal, written performance evaluation process for all staff.

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 Village Council operates sewage lagoon and landfill, co-located and staffed by Council employees. The utility is in the process of reviewing and adopting a revised ordinance for the landfill and sewage lagoon. The draft ordinance identifies general elements of landfill and sewage lagoon operations. RUBA recommends the revision of the ordinance to more clearly identify elements specific to the sewage lagoon including rates, collection policies, and a description of operations. A separate ordinance appears to be in active use concerning personal burn barrels, Ordinance #2000-1. The ordinance identifies landfill use fees. The landfill operator has received HAZWOPR training and certification according to the village administrator. The operator has roughly two years experience in the role, is currently paid $15.00/hour and works on average 8 hours/week. The bookkeeper, in the role for about one year and paid $17.00/hour, has prior experience as assistant village administrator and as a bookkeeper for the local electric utility.

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".
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
RUBA obtained a copy of the landfill and sewage lagoon operational plan. The plan, drafted July 29, 2005 by consultant ASCG Incorporated, offers detailed operational and staffing policies and requirements and is to be adopted shortly according to staff. Although the plans focus is on the landfill, the content includes some material relevant to sewage lagoon operation. RUBA obtained a copy of Village Council minutes pertinent to landfill and sewage lagoon operation. Staff appear to provide verbal reports to the council in a concise fashion. Concerning monthly reports and communications to the governing body, RUBA recommends the use of brief written reports to establish documentation for review purposes. The utility's inventory control and critical spare parts list is identified in the Operational Plan. At this time the Village Council does not provide public drinking water services and as such is not required to produce and distribute a Consumer Confidence Report.