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November 14, 2017 Regular Board Meeting

Posted on: December 14th, 2017

Call to Order – Chairman White called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m. Board members present were J. B. White, Eddie Roberts, Jr., Eddie Ford, Harvey Norris & Burt Jones; Also present was Ronnie Daniel, an architect representing Toushar Patel. Staff members present were Marcie Seleb, general manager, and Alyssa Hopson, clerk to the board.
Approval of Minutes from October 10, 2017 Meeting – Mr. Roberts made a motion to dispense with the reading of, and to approve, the minutes from the October 10, 2017 meeting. This was seconded by Mr. Ford and approved unanimously.
Review of Draft Municipal Wholesale Rates for CY 2018 – Ms. Seleb gave an overview of the current municipal wholesale rates and reminded the Board that they had established a practice of recalculating rates at the end of the calendar year when the fiscal year audit has been completed.
As an aside, Seleb noted that Monroe County, currently the Authority’s largest wholesale customer, is considering using the Macon Water Authority to serve the High Falls area now served by our Authority. Seleb explained that the Authority’s meter to Monroe County had originally been installed as an emergency connection for Monroe County, but had evolved to a full-time supply for the High Falls area when Monroe County abandoned its well system about ten years ago.
Ms. Seleb reported that she has discussed this with Monroe County Commission Chairman Greg Tapley, who would like to negotiate a five to seven year pricing for Monroe County. Seleb said that she feels it will benefit the Authority in the short term to retain Monroe County as a customer, particularly because of the significant drop in usage by the Georgia Diagnostic Prison over the past year. She also said it is likely that within the next five to seven years, the Authority may prefer to save the capacity now given to Monroe County for Butts County customers.
Using the Authority’s current “system capacity” wholesale rate calculation with audited Fiscal Year 2017 financials, Seleb recommended a monthly service fee of $20.05 and cost per 1000 gallons rate of $4.90 for Monroe County. This compares to their current monthly service fee of $19.96 and cost per 1000 gallons rate of $5.23.
For the Authority’s other two wholesale customers, the Georgia Department of Corrections and the City of Barnesville, Seleb recommended a flat $5.24 per 1000 gallons rate. The calculation used for this rate takes into account a return on depreciated assets. A motion was made by Mr. Norris to approve the recalculated wholesale rates as presented. This was seconded by Mr. Jones and approved unanimously.
Request to Connect to Sewer at Great American Travel Center – Mr. Daniel requested a single sewer connection to serve the convenience store and two additional retail spaces. The Great American Travel Center has a six-inch water meter for fire protection. The retail spaces within the facility are privately sub-metered into three two-inch water meters. Ms. Seleb recommended charging a one time sewer capital recovery fee at three times the $6,400 rate for a two-inch meter, totaling$19,200. A motion was made by Mr. Norris to accept the sewer connection request at the recommended capital recovery fee pricing. This was seconded by Mr. Roberts and approved with affirmative votes from Mr. Norris, Mr. Roberts, and Mr. Ford. Mr. White and Mr. Jones abstained because they believed they had a conflict of interest because of property interests in the vicinity.
Post Office Concerns – Post Card Billing – Staff at the Jackson Post Office has asked that the Authority stop using post cards to mail bills because the cards have to be hand sorted in the local post office. Ms. Seleb reported that based upon proposals received in 2013, the cost of mailing letter format bills with return envelopes was $2,600-$3,000– double the cost of the post card mailing. The Board did not make a decision on changing the billing format, but did request that Ms. Seleb to get updated proposals.
Confirm Approval of Revised Service Delivery Strategy – Ms. Seleb informed the Board that Butts County Commission Chairman Robert Henderson asked that the Authority be a part of the Service Delivery Plan although not required by law. Ms. Seleb and Mr. Ford met with attorney William White on October 12th to iron out concerns about the Service Delivery Strategy that was tabled at the October meeting.
Attorney White advised that there should not be a concern of about out-of-county rates for retail customers appearing to be arbitrary. He also recommended that the Authority to work toward a water service delivery map with all providers in the county and agreed that the Authority’s water system map could be removed from the plan as it was not a service delivery delineation map. Members then voted by text message to authorize Chairman White to sign off on the revised plan. A motion was made by Mr. Ford to confirm the text vote that authorized Chairman White to sign the service delivery plan. This was seconded by Mr. Norris and approved unanimously.
Manager’s Report
Brownlee Road – This project is complete, except for bore to East Ball.
East Ball Road – The crew began laying pipe along edge of road this week to complete this main from Greer Dairy Road to GA Hwy. 36.
Hurricane Cleanup at Land Application System- Cleanup of downed trees is complete after several weeks of work by the crew.
Jones Travel Center – Staff and engineer Lorraine Campagne are reviewing plans for water and sewer extensions to this project.
Dollar General – After new improvements to Jackson Road, fire hydrants and associated valves now need to be raised.
Tanks – Tank Pro washed out and inspected all four distribution system tanks in October.
Trihalomethanes (THM’s) – The Authority’s compliance results are good and getting better each quarter due to the aeration system installed in April 2016.
Quarterly Governmental Meeting – The Butts County Industrial Development Authority is hosting a meeting at 6 p.m. on November 16, 2017 at the Rivers Ranch. Local labor force will be the topic of discussion.
Authority Thanksgiving Luncheon – A Thanksgiving luncheon will be held on November 17, 2017 at the Authority’s office.
Can-A-Thon – A motion was made by Mr. Ford to make a $500 donation to the City of Jackson’s Can-A-Thon. This was seconded by Mr. Roberts and approved unanimously.
Middle Ocmulgee Water Plan/University of Georgia Bromide Study Grant – The Middle Ocmulgee Water Planning Council is continuing to meet. The bromide study funded by a seed grant obtained through the Council is in the data collection phase.
University of Central Florida Water Study – The corrosion control evaluation of the study is on hold while the Authority awaits approval from the Environmental Protection Division.
“No Cost” Yellow Water Creek Project – Ms. Seleb reported that Mr. Jones has agreed to ask the Georgia Department of Transportation to fund water main relocation for this bridge replacement project.
Personnel Committee – The Board appointed Mr. Roberts and Mr. Norris to serve on a personnel committee to advise Ms. Seleb on several staffing issues.
Operations Statistics – Ms. Seleb reviewed water production, water loss and customer statistics. She noted that water sales for the first quarter of Fiscal Year 2018 were running 15% below the previous year, primarily due to the Georgia Diagnostic Prison using 52% less water than last year. This reduction in use was accounted for in the Fiscal Year 2018 budget.
The average daily finished water pumped in October to the Authority, Jackson and Jenkinsburg from Burford and Stewart plants was 2.3 million gallons per day, with a maximum of 2.9 million gallons per day. The rolling twelve-month average loss was 9.8% with the current monthly average loss at 23.3%. The total amount of finished water pumped in October by each plant was: Burford – 64 million gallons and Stewart – 6 million gallons.
Water billing for October 2017 was $218,186, down 18% from the previous month and down 12% from the same month for the previous year.
Sewer billing for October 2017 was $55,519, down 15% from the previous month, and up 3% from the previous year.
Total water accounts numbered 5,552 at the end of October, with 5,084 active water customers. One water tap was purchased on the existing system during the month of October.
There were 171 total sewer accounts at the end of October, with 169 of those being active customers. No new sewer connections were purchased during the month.
Financial Report – Ms. Seleb reviewed the financial summary for Water & Sewer Operations, Capital Recovery Fees, and Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) for October 2017. Water operations income for October was $231,558 with $174,264 in expenses. Water capital recovery fee revenue for Fiscal Year 2018, thus far, was $3,803 with an outflow of $26,656 for payment of the Sandy Creek Loan.
Sewer Operations income for October was $58,375 with expenses of $36,058. Sewer Capital Recovery Fee revenue for the fiscal year thus far was $2,656 with $0 in expenses. To date, $1,985,463 has been collected in 2013-19 SPLOST, with $911,424 expended.
Total cash on hand at the end of October 2017 was $10,080,170. This is $37,121 over the June 30, 2017 balance. Copies of the October 2017 financial summaries, the consolidated fund balance sheet, and the consolidated fund income statement are attached and made a part of these minutes.
Adjourn – A motion was made by Mr. Jones to adjourn the meeting at 6:55 p.m. This was seconded by Mr. Norris and approved unanimously.