Quarterly Report: 2012, January - March (Q3), Emmonak

Ken Berlin  
DCRA Regional Office:
Gov't Type:
Second Class City 
Agreement Date:
City of Emmonak 
Assessment Status:
Assessment Date:
Exp Date:
Last Updated:
Community Sanitation Overview:
The City of Emmonak owns and operates the piped water/sewer system. The City also owns and operates the washeteria/sauna. Construction of a new washeteria is completed. The city council is the policy making body for this utility. Water is derived from the Yukon river and is treated. Piped water and sewer services are provided to most of the residents of Emmonak. Currently, there are 206 connections to this system. Out of those connected, there are 185 residential homes and 23 businesses in service. The next water/sewer Village Safe Water funding will connect six new Emmonak tribal housing units. 
RUBA Status & Activities This Qtr:
This quarter, city officials contacted Bethel RUBA staff to request Elected Officials training for the city council members. Also requested was instructions regarding writing, adopting and codifying ordinances. RUBA staff provided instructions for the ordinance process and will schedule onsite training when possible. The city clerk resigned and the utility monthly finance reports are current to February 2012. The city has sufficient fuel on hand to last until spring. AVEC confirmed in March that the electric bills for the utility are current. The FY12 budget is on file, workers compensation with AML/JIA is in place and State DOL/ESC filing is current as of March 2012. There are no tax liens. RUBA staff traveled to Emmonak March 29-30, 2012, to attend a community project open house and to conduct a RUBA assessment. In attendance at the open house were various project engineers and representatives from numerous state and funding agencies, as well as City of Emmonak Council members, the city manager, and residents. Funded projects included heavy equipment, roads, city dock, water and sewer repair, a mitigation plan to elevate 17 homes and erosion control and a landfill site. Other Emmonak projects include a new LYSD school, an AVEC tank farm, and nine other FEMA projects being closed out. The total funded projects are worth $44,916,000 and projects with pending funding are worth $45,674,000. The RUBA assessment was conducted with city administrative and finance staff the following day. It covered the finances, accounting system, tax problems, organizational management and operation of utility. All activities went well with the community projects open house and the RUBA assessment.  
RUBA Activities for the Coming Qtr:
RUBA staff is available to provide assistance with any management capacity indicators that are not being met.
Essential Indicators:
26 of 26
Sustainable Indicators:
26 of 27
Total Score:
52 of 53


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.
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 FY 2012 budget (state fiscal year) is balanced and is available on the Division of Community and Regional Affairs (DCRA) website. Finance reports are current to February 2012. City has 60K hf1 and 5K gas fuel on hand enough to last until spring. 9/11 AVEC confirmed electric bills current.

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
Collections have been a problem in the past due to change in administrative staff. The city was considering joining ARUC billing and collections. No further action by the city to join ARUC was noted in the last quarter. The collection policy is being reviewed by staff to update where necessary and set up procedures to enforce collections. Accounting is done in QuickBooks Pro.

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
There are no reported tax liens on the Statewide Lien Watch Report. The city was deemed compliant by the State DOL/ESC confirmed compliance on March 2012. IRS release request sent to IRS not returned yet, but copies of last 941 reports on file.

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
The City of Emmonak has workers compensation insurance coverage through Alaska Municipal League. A personnel policy includes sections for hiring, evaluation, and probation. Vacant positions are posted until filled. New hires are on probation for three months. The city manager and city council have authority to hire. The Emmonak city council screens and hires for the positions of manager, police chief, clerk, treasurer, and city attorney.

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 City of Emmonak is known as the provider of water and wastewater services and has adopted an ordinance authorizing it to operate. The city manager has held the position for a number of years, and the bookkeeper worked in accounts payable prior to taking the position as the city's full-time bookkeeper. The operators are trained and certified or working towards certification.

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".
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
The city hired water wastewater operation staff and have arranged for training. Indicators will change as more information is available from the new operator.