Compliance & Legislative and Finance Committees Combined Meeting Minutes – April 19, 2017

For your consideration, please review the minutes from the Combined meeting of the Compliance & Legislative Committee and the Finance Committee from April 19, 2017:

Compliance & Legislative and Finance Combined Meeting 4-19-17 Minutes with Attachments

To read the minutes, please open or download the pdf from the link above, or you may see more below:

Brunswick-Glynn County

Joint Water and Sewer Commission

1703 Gloucester Street

Commission Meeting Room

Wednesday, April 19, 2017 at 2:00 PM 

COMPLIANCE & LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE

AND FINANCE COMMITTEE MINUTES 

Present:                     

Don Elliott, Committee Chairman

Mike Browning, Committee Chairman

Steve Copeland, Commissioner                              

Jimmy Junkin, Executive Director

Charles Dorminy, Legal Counsel                                   

Also Present:             

Tom Boland, Deputy Director

John Donaghy, Chief Financial Officer

Pam Crosby, Director of Procurement

Mark Ryals, Superintendent

Angela Walker, Pre-Treatment Compliance Coordinator 

Absent:                      

Cornell Harvey, Commissioner 

Chairman Elliott called the meeting to order 2:00 PM

PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD

There being no citizens who wished to address the Committee, Chairman Elliott closed the Public Comment Period. 

APPROVAL:

  1. Minutes from March 15, 2017 Compliance & Legislative Committee Meeting

Commissioner Browning made a motion seconded by Commissioner Copeland to approve the minutes of the March 15, 2017 Compliance & Legislative Committee Meeting Minutes.  Motion approved 3-0-1. (Commissioner Harvey was absent.) 

  1. Minutes from March 15, 2017 Finance Committee Meeting

Commissioner Browning made a motion seconded by Commissioner Copeland to approve the minutes of the March 15, 2017 Finance Committee Meeting Minutes.  Motion approved 3-0-1. (Commissioner Harvey was absent.) 

  1. King & Prince Industrial Wastewater Pre-Treatment Draft Permit – A. Walker

Angela Walker presented to the Committee that as a result of meetings with King & Prince, revisions were made to their permit, of which the TKN limits and Oil & Grease limits were the two main concerns.  Since revisions were made, the public must be allowed to view it again for another 30 days. This permit was brought before the Committee for approval to be placed for public viewing and commentary, and will be brought before the Committee and the full Commission again for formal approval to issue to King & Prince.  Angela advised the Committee that King & Prince agreed to pay all additional costs associated with revising the permit. The revised limits were approved as acceptable by the consulting firm of Brown & Caldwell.

Commissioner Copeland made a motion seconded by Commissioner Browning to release the King & Prince permit to the public for review and comment.  Motion carried 3-0-1. (Commissioner Harvey was absent.)  

  1. Operating Reserve Balance – J. Donaghy

John Donaghy presented to the Committee a proposed adjustment of the Operating Reserve Balance. Since June of 2010, the JWSC has maintained an Operating Reserve in the amount of six months of budgeted operating expenses to provide for a period of unexpected revenue loss.  In the 2015-2016 fiscal year, the Commission authorized the use of operating Reserve funds for the purchase of needed vehicles and equipment.  The Operating Fund has not been restored to its original balance after the use of those funds.  It would require additional funding of the Operating Reserve of about $1M to reach the six month balance, of which would come from the proposed budget for the 2017-2018 fiscal year. John advised that to minimize the projected rate increase, staff recommended that the Commission reduce the targeted balance of the Operating Reserve to four months of budgeted operating expenses.

Commissioner Browning made a motion seconded by Commissioner Copeland to move the approval for the JWSC to establish the target level of the Operating Reserve at four months of operating expenses effective as of April 20, 2017 to the full Commission. Motion carried 3-0-1. (Commissioner Harvey was absent.) 

DISCUSSION:

  1. Pre-Treatment Compliance Report Update – A. Walker

Angela Walker presented the updated list of Pretreatment Compliance to the Committee.  Other than the general information for update, she noted that she had met with Brunswick Brewery to discuss the requirements for the new brewery on April 14, 2017.  When the brewery is ready to open, JWSC will issue a permit.  The limits requiring a permit are PH, BOD, and metals.  A permit application has been provided to the brewery to complete and send with required information to the firm of Brown & Caldwell for drafting of the permit.

  1. Rate Resolution Inspection Fees for Fiscal Year 2017-2018 – A. Walker

Angela Walker discussed the upcoming Rate Resolution Inspection Fees with the Committee.  She noted that on the current Schedule of Fees and Charges under Inspection Fees, there is FOG Compliance – Initial Inspection and also Re-inspection, which requires that inspection is done for solid separators, hair traps and lint traps for businesses that have issues other than the FOG.  She is requesting that it be considered for a change to be made from FOG to either be a Pre-treatment Initial Inspection or a Compliance Inspection, which would reduce the amount of processing necessary for Certificates of Occupancy. It was indicated that this is a part of the normal process in preparing the Rate Resolution and this type of change can be considered and presented to the Committee and then the full Commission for approval for the upcoming year.

  1. 2016 Inspection and Permitting Fees – Commercial Businesses – A. Walker

Angela Walker presented to the Committee that it has come to her attention there are some businesses which do not indicate the true purposes of the water they will be using when they are applying for services.  Her concern is to ensure that JWSC is charging businesses the fees for the backflow and the pre-treatment inspections, especially with the amount of time, effort and cost required on the part of JWSC staff for the inspections and compliance.  All appropriate fees and requirements should be met before commercial businesses can receive their Certificate of Occupancy, as well as confirmation that the businesses are representing the true nature of their business. This subject matter will be addressed further internally with JWSC staff as well as with the City and County.  There was additional discussion pertaining to other inspection and enforcement fees, penalties and compliance.

  1. Base Rate Fixed O & M Charges – J. Donaghy

John Donaghy explained the various components of the current rate structure.  There are 3 components: (1) Administrative costs, which come from the fixed fees on the customer’s bill; (2) Debt Service, which comes from the fixed fees on the customer’s bill; and (3) Water Production, Water Distribution and Wastewater Treatment costs, which are all funded by the variable or usage portion of the customer’s bill.  The methods of charging fees to ratepayers are being reviewed.  Customers who are part time residents in Glynn County are currently contributing less towards the availability of services fee.  When there is no usage, there is less funding for the Operations and Maintenance of the Water and Sewer systems that must be maintained year round in order to ensure that there is availability of services.  This is due to the Operations and Maintenance of the Water and Wastewater Systems being funded from the usage based portion of the customer’s bill. Staff is working with Stantec Consultants and will be reviewing different scenarios of how to appropriately structure future billing in order to properly fund for Operations and Maintenance of the Systems.

  1. Accounts Receivable Collections Policy – J. Donaghy

John Donaghy reported to the Committee that there is currently between $3.8M and $4M due to the JWSC at any given point in time. Upon review of the Accounts Receivable, it was noted that there are a large number of customers who are past due in payments for their accounts, totaling approximately $2M. The current AR system does not offer mechanisms for collection of past due monies, such as a calculated payment plan system.  The new software being implemented does have features where calculations for payments can be made based on account information, payment schedules can be printed out, payments will be tracked through the system instead of manually, as well as other features that will make collections more efficient.  John also mentioned that the JWSC is researching a Dollar Round-Up Program which would hopefully help to provide funds to assist those customers who have a true need for help in paying their bill. Policies regarding Accounts Receivable and past due customers’ bills are being reviewed and prepared for enforcement.  This is another method to help keep the costs to all ratepayers as minimal as possible. 

  1. Capital Improvements Plan – J. Junkin

Mr. Junkin presented charts to the Committee detailing the R & R Program plans and budgeting for the next five years. He briefly discussed the facilities’ needs for upgrades.  He also mentioned that from an accounting standpoint, anything that is done to improve the plants that would bring them back up to their original designed capacity or go beyond can be counted as expansion for the purposes of accounting and funding. In their current state, the Treatment Plants are not able to achieve the original designed capacities.  The plans for the various R & R Projects and funding sources will be continually reviewed and researched for consideration.

  1. March End of Month Financial Comparative – J. Donaghy

The financial report was not presented in this Committee Meeting, but will be presented in the next full Commission Meeting.

Executive Director’s Update:

No additional update at this time. 

There being no other business to bring before the Committee, the Chairman adjourned the meeting at 4:04 pm.