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July 16, 2013 Regular Board Meeting

Posted on: July 16th, 2013

Call to Order – Chairman White called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m. Board members present were J. B. White, Harvey Norris, Burt Jones, Eddie Roberts, Jr., & Eddie Ford.  Also present were Jim Novak representing First Billing, Marcie Seleb, general manager, and Joyce Hosey, clerk to the Board.
Opening Prayer – Mr. Norris opened the meeting with a prayer.
Approval of Minutes from Previous Meeting – Mr. Roberts made a motion to dispense with the reading of the minutes from the June 11, 2013 meeting and approve the same.  This was seconded by Mr. Norris and approved unanimously.
Consider Agreement with Henry County Water Authority for Emergency Tie-In – Ms. Seleb advised the Board that she has received a letter from Henry County Water Authority outlining the purchase of water on an emergency basis from Henry County.
Ms. Seleb went on to tell the Board that the cost for the tie-in using the existing Hwy. 42 vault would cost the Authority $11,478.15 which could provide up to 1.7 million gallons per day.  A second tie-in at Keys Ferry Road would cost $53,409.23, and would provide up 1 million gallons per day.  Having both connections would allow flow to both pressure zones in Butts County.
The water usage rate would be $5.26 per 1,000 gallons, which is 1.5 times the prevailing rate for the Henry Authority’s municipal customers.
A motion was made by Mr. Jones to approve and authorize Mr. White to sign the agreement to tie-in with Henry County Water Authority in case of an emergency.  This was seconded by Mr. Norris and approved unanimously.
Consider Drinking Water Lab Contract with Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) – Ms. Seleb advised the Board that the Authority has used the EPD lab for drinking water testing for lead/copper, organics, inorganics, trihalomethanes, TOC’s, haloacetic acids, and cryptosporidium for a number of years.  EPD sends the sample bottles to the Authority at the proper times for collection in order to meet all Federal requirements.
This contract is renewed every three years.  The price under the new contract for 2014-16 will be $10,700 per year and is shared by the Authority, Jenkinsburg, and Jackson.  A motion was made by Mr. Roberts directing Ms. Seleb to enter into a 36-month drinking water testing and related services contract with the Georgia EPD.  This was seconded by Mr. Norris and approved unanimously.
First Billing Presentation – Jim Novak – Mr. Novak presented an overview of a billing and payment solution offered as a unique one-stop shop for customer payments.  First Billing provides a means for credit card payments similar to the company currently used by the Authority, but also offers a way for customers to view billing history online and to receive bills electronically.  These services are provided at no cost to the Authority.
Mr. Novak finished his presentation and excused himself from the meeting at 6:30 p.m.
Potential to Refinance Georgia Environmental Finance Authority (GEFA) Loans – Board members heard about the potential to refinance the Authority’s existing GEFA loans through revenue bonds.  The GEFA loans have an interest rate of nearly 4 percent. In today’s market, interest rates for revenue bonds can be in the 2 percent range.  The other plus to refinancing would be that the Authority could establish a bond rating which would be useful in the event of future borrowing needs.
Ms. Seleb has made an initial contact with Kidwell & Company, Inc., a municipal advisor that has a great deal of experience in restructuring municipal debt obligations to reduce interest expense and minimize transaction costs for municipal clients.  The Board directed Ms. Seleb to move forward by having Kidwell & Company undertake an initial analysis to see how much revenue could be saved by restructuring the GEFA debt.
Manager’s Report 

Construction Update

Hwy. 36 Sewer Correction Work – Inspection is completed and passed.  Now the sewer line must be cleaned out from the section corrected by Davidson Hydrant and Utility back to the beginning manhole.  Grounds are too wet to access at this time.

Hwy. 16 Sewer Correction Work – Davidson Hydrant and Utility first backed out of doing this work at all, but has reconsidered the project with an offer to do the work for an additional 33 percent cost.  This is being reviewed by the bond company with the likelihood that the project will be put out to bid.

Meter Replacement Project – Ms. Seleb advised the Board that all books are completed except for approximately 150 meters that were skipped. Mack Jones, Inc. is requesting $30 per meter to come back due to increased mobilizations costs, which is being recommended by Ms. Seleb.  They are also wanting $325 each to install 1½” and 2″ meters, which is not recommended by Ms. Seleb.

A motion was made by Mr. Roberts to sign a change order allowing Mack Jones Construction to install the remaining 150, 3/4″ and 1″ meters that were skipped at $30 each.  This was seconded by Mr. Norris and approved unanimously.

Tom Goddard Water Main Extension – The crew will be starting the Tom Goddard Road water main extension this week.

Operations Report

At $227,111, water billing for June 2013 was down 1% from June 2012, but up 17% from May 2013.  For the fiscal year ending June 30th, billing was down 2%.  This is the first time in its history that the Authority’s total water billing revenue fell in a fiscal year. Sewer billing for June 2013 was $41,762, up 6% from May 2013 and up 43% from June 2012.  For the fiscal year as a whole, sewer billing also increased by a whopping 43%.

The total water customer base was 5,307 with active water customers numbering 4,778.  One regular tap and four construction taps were sold during the month of June. The total sewer customer base remained at 129 with active sewer customers numbering 125.

The average daily finished water pumped in June to the Authority, Jackson and Jenkinsburg from the Burford and Stewart plants was 2.2 million gallons per day, with a maximum of 3 million gallons per day.  The rolling 12-month average loss was 9.6% with the current monthly average loss at 6.5%.  The total amount of finished water pumped in June by plant was: Burford – 62 million gallons; Stewart – 5 million gallons.

The average wastewater influent at the Bucksnort Ranch Land Application System was .199 million gallons with an average daily effluent of .154 million gallons and a maximum 7-day effluent of .329 million gallons.

Financial Report – Ms. Seleb went over the financial summary for Water & Sewer Operations, Capital Recovery Fees and Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) for June 2013.  Water operations income was $239,989 and expenses were $142,184. Water capital recovery fee revenue for the fiscal year so far is $14,242 with expenses of $12,629.  Sewer operations income for June 2013 was $42,070, and expenses were $47,945.  Sewer capital recovery fee revenue for the fiscal year thus far was $31,667 with expenses of $11,578.
The Authority has used $2,891,391 of 2007-12 SPLOST to pay monthly debt on the Bucksnort Ranch expansion loan. To date, $556,089 remains in 2007-12 SPLOST funds for this purpose.
Total cash on hand through the end of June 2013 was $6,170,002.  This is $874,478 over the June 30, 2012 balances.  Copies of financial summaries, combined fund balance sheets, and combined fund 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 June 2013.  Copies of check registers and credit card statements are attached and made a part of these minutes.
Adjourn – A motion was made by Mr. Jones to adjourn meeting at 7:15 p.m.  This was seconded by Mr. Roberts and approved unanimously.