Call to Order – Chairman White called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. Board members present were J. B. White, Harvey Norris, Bob Harris and Wesley Keber; representing the Georgia Association of Water Professionals was Bill Zieburtz; staff members present were Marcie Seleb & Joyce Hosey.
Opening Prayer – Mr. Norris opened the meeting with a prayer.
Approval of Minutes from Previous Meeting – Mr. Harris made a motion to dispense with the reading of the minutes from the April 14, 2009 meeting and approve the same. This was seconded by Mr. Norris and approved unanimously.
GAWP Gold/Platinum Award Presentation – Bill Zieburtz officially presented the ninth consecutive Platinum Award for the Burford (Ocmulgee) Plant, the ninth consecutive Platinum Award for the Bucksnort Ranch Land Application System and the second consecutive Gold Award for Stewart (Towaliga) Plant to Ms. Seleb.
Consider Penn Credit Corporation for Bad Debt Collections – The Authority currently has a $40,000 bad debt balance in the collection’s system of its current contractor, Credit Bureau Associates of Georgia (CBA). CBA has a lackluster collection rate with fees of 59% which is paid by the customer.
Penn Credit Corporation has been selected by The Georgia Municipal Association to provide group service to its members. Penn Credit provides a state of the art program with collection fees of 16.5 % and 19%. They also report the accounts to the major credit bureaus.
Ms. Seleb noted that the Authority currently adds the 59% collection fee to a customer account when it is turned over to collections; this fee is then credited off the account if CBA collects and charges its fee. Ms. Seleb suggested that if a change is made to Penn Credit, the Authority access an additional 25% when an account is turned over to collections. Penn Credit will bill for its fees separately, making it easier to manage customer accounts.
Joyce Hosey explained to the board that if a customer has two months of unpaid bills, the late fees and disconnection fee will often make the total due exceed the current $75 security deposit. Board members discussed raising the security deposit to $100, but agreed to table any action until a full analysis of collection accounts can be made.
A motion was made by Mr. Norris to go with Penn Credit Corporation for bad debt collection. This was seconded by Mr. Harris and approved unanimously.
Consider Purchase of Skid Steer for LAS – There is a need for a compact track loader to manage the growth of weeds and small trees in the spray lanes at the LAS. Pricing for several options were presented for comparison. Pricing for a unit with a 74″ bucket, a 72″ rotary cutter and enclosed cab is as follows: Bob Cat T190 – $39,000; Caterpillar 257B2 (57hp) – $45,300; Case 420 (69hp) – $37,600; Takeuchi (67hp) – $39,225; Vermeer AS VRC-60 (60hp) – $44,100.
It was noted that staff had only been able to demonstrate the BobCat, the Caterpillar, and the Vermeer. The BobCat was the preferred of the units that had been demonstrated.
A motion was made by Mr. Keber to purchase a Bob Cat T190 at a cost of $39,000 through a 24-month lease with balloon payment at the end of the lease period. This was seconded by Mr. Norris and approved unanimously.
Consider Options for LAS Hay – Ms. Seleb reminded the Board that Charles Washington and Buck Stewart have opted not to cut hay at the LAS this year. The best long-term solution appears to purchase our own equipment as the Authority would have control over when hay is cut and how the fields are managed for optimal wastewater application.
Ms. Seleb advised the Board that the Authority is looking at costs in the range of $70,000 for an 80hp tractor with a square baler, mower conditioner rake and accumulator. Several board members offered again to check with people they know to see if anyone is interested in contracting for the hay.
Patel Commercial Property Final Design Approval – A revised set of plans has been received for the project. It was noted that Mr. Patel wants to install water lines in Lamar County without master meters until such time as he has a buyer in need of water there. Ms. Seleb recommended that the developer either install the meters during initial construction or cap the water lines at the county line.
Ms. Seleb advised the Board that a service division agreement needs to be made with the Lamar County Water and Sewer Authority (LCWSA) for lots that straddle the county line. She suggested that the customer go to the county with the greatest percentage of the lot. The Board tabled the decision to make an agreement with LCWSA, but instructed Ms. Seleb to let Mr. Patel know that the Authority will need easements in hand before it can move forward signing off on the plans.
Update on Transmission Main – Ms. Seleb advised the Board that all of the line passed pressure tests on May 10, 2009. Flushing is to begin on May 12, 2009, with testing for bacteria before putting into service.
- Higgins Road – Ms. Seleb advised the Board that the crew is 2500 feet into the Higgins Road extension.
- Hamm Road – Ms. Seleb advised the Board that the Authority is still acquiring easements for Hamm Road from Georgia Power & the Strickland Estate.
- Riverview Park – Ms. Seleb advised the Board that the Authority is working to acquire easements for the Riverview Park sewer extension.
- Higgins & Hamm Roads – Ms. Seleb advised the Board that West Ball Road will be the Authority’s next extension project after Higgins Road and Hamm Road.
Operation Statistics – Ms. Seleb went over the water and sewer statistics for the month of April 2009. Water billing was down from the previous month at $158,995, with an active customer base of 5,153. Sewer billing for the month was down from the previous month at $22,888 with an active customer base of 125.
The average daily water pumped to the Authority, Jackson and Jenkinsburg from the Burford and Stewart plants were 2.0, with maximum of 2.4 MGD. The rolling 12-month averages loss of 16.8%. The total amount of water pumped in April 2009 per plant was: Burford – 54 MG; Stewart – 5 MG. The average wastewater sprayed at the Bucksnort Ranch LAS was .197/.550 MGD with a maximum 7-day effluent of .363/.550 MGD.
A copy of these statistics is attached and made a part of these minutes.
Uniform Purchase vs. Rental – Ms. Seleb advised the Board that the Authority is paying roughly $10,000 per year for uniform rental through Cintas. While the Cintas guaranteed a set rate for clothing rentals in a 36-month contract, the actual cost is rising sharply due to increased (and unlimited) service fees. Most employees launder their rental uniforms at home as they feel that Cintas does not get them clean.
The Authority can purchase uniforms for the field employees for around $5,000. This will also give the staff more options and a higher quality uniform. Board members directed Ms. Seleb to proceed with uniform purchase.
Rebate from Griffin – Ms. Seleb advised the Board that the Authority received a certified letter from the City of Griffin last week with a refund check for $1,107 for overcharges in 2007-8. Another wholesale customer had questioned the City’s rates which resulted in a refund.
The letter and computation accompanying the check is attached and made a part of these minutes.
Financial Report – Ms. Seleb went over the financial summary for Water & Sewer Operations and SPLOST through April 2009. A copy of the financial summaries, as well as combined balance sheets and income statements are attached and made a part of these minutes.
Review Bills Paid – Board members reviewed check registers and credit card statements for the month of April 2009. A copy of the check registers is attached and made a part of these minutes.
Adjourn – A motion was made by Mr. Norris to adjourn meeting at 7:30 p.m. This was seconded by Mr. Keber and approved unanimously.