Finance Committee Meeting Minutes – Wednesday, June 15, 2022
For your consideration, please read the minutes from the Finance Committee Meeting held on Wednesday, June 15, 2022 at 3:00 pm in the Commission Meeting Room.
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Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water & Sewer Commission
1703 Gloucester Street, Brunswick, GA 31520
Commission Meeting Room
Wednesday, June 15, 2022 at 3:00 PM
FINANCE COMMITTEE MINUTES
Bob Duncan, Committee Chairman
Charles Cook, Commissioner
Tripp Stephens, Commissioner
Andrew Burroughs, Executive Director
Ben Turnipseed, Commission Chairman
LaDonnah Roberts, Executive Deputy Director
Charlie Dorminy, Legal Counsel
Janice Meridith, Executive Commission Administrator
Committee Chairman Duncan called the meeting to order at 3:00 PM.
PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD
Chairman Duncan opened the Public Comment Period.
There being no citizens that wished to address the Committee, Committee Chairman Duncan closed the Public Comment Period.
- 2022-2023 Employee Health Insurance Renewals – Catina Tindall, First Coast Benefits Solutions, Inc.
Mrs. Tindall recalled for the Committee that as of August 1, 2020, JWSC migrated to a self-funded insurance program with United Healthcare. After completion of the first year of the plan, the JWSC recognized that very few of the employees actually reached individual stop loss coverage levels and decided in to increase the individual stop loss coverage from $50,000 to $60,000. Staff bi-weekly deductions have remained the same as they were for the most recent fully-funded insurance renewal. First Coast Benefits Solutions was able to negotiate a flat renewal of the self-insured coverage levels with the existing $60,000 individual stop loss due to the lower-than-expected claims performance through United Healthcare. The JWSC is under a rate guarantee on dental, vision, voluntary short-term disability, employer paid long-term disability, and voluntary life and dependent life insurance coverages through August 1, 2023. With the negotiated zero increase renewal from United Healthcare on employee health insurance, the JWSC can renew all employee insurance coverages at the same rate as currently provided. The Committee had a thorough discussion on options and incentives to consider for this current renewal and the future 2023-2024 health benefits renewal. Mrs. Tindall and Mr. Burroughs will meet further to bring a recommendation to the full Commission the next day based on this discussion.
Commissioner Stephens made a motion seconded by Commissioner Cook to move that the Finance Committee recommend that the full Commission renew the employee insurance coverages to be effective August 1, 2022; and that the Executive Director alter the program based off the discussion from today’s meeting. Motion carried 3-0-0.
- Minutes from the May 18, 2022 Finance Committee Meeting
Commissioner Cook made a motion seconded by Commissioner Stephens to approve the minutes from the May 18, 2022 Finance Committee Meeting. Motion carried 3-0-0.
- Fiscal Year 2023 Rate Resolution – L. Roberts
Mrs. Roberts stated to the Committee that each year the Brunswick-Glynn Joint Water and Sewer Commission reviews the resolution previously passed by the Board to document rates and fees associated with JWSC’s products and services to our customers (the “Rate Resolution”). This document is public record and it is made available to interested parties on the JWSC website as well as upon request for printed copies. Mrs. Roberts provided a redlined Rate Resolution draft setting forth the rates and charges necessary to support the Fiscal Year ending June 30, 2023 JWSC budget. Proposed revisions include the following:
- User rates for water use over 6,000 gallons per month have been adjusted per the Board’s approval of this item at the May 19, 2022 meeting.
- Language related to customer deposits has been revised to align JWSC’s process with similarly situated utilities.
- The deposit amount for a hydrant meter rental has been revised.
Commissioner Stephens made a motion seconded by Commissioner Cook to move that the Finance Committee recommend that the full Commission approve the attached Rate Resolution for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2023 and recommend its approval by the JWSC Commission. Motion carried 3-0-0.
- Deposit Refund Policy – L. Roberts
Mrs. Roberts recalled for the Committee that in conjunction with the presentation of the Proposed Annual Budget for Fiscal Year 2023, staff also outlined various JWSC policies that would be reviewed within the coming months. One of these policies is the current policy related to customer deposits. In order to ensure consistency with regional neighboring utilities, JWSC staff contacted six (6) such organizations to gather information about their handling of customer deposits. This information was then compared with JWSC’s current practices in order to determine areas where differences exist. Since JWSC wants to prudently manage risk while also considering our customers’ needs, several potential changes were identified. These changes relate to the determination of when to require, increase or waive a customer deposit, as well as when and how to credit or refund a customer deposit. Proposed redlines to the specific Ordinance sections were attached for the Committee to preview.
Commissioner Stephens made a motion seconded by Commissioner Cook to move to recommend the full Board that the Commission recommend to the City of Brunswick Commission and Glynn County Commission that the Ordinance sections related to customer deposits be amended as shown in the attached document. Motion carried 3-0-0.
- Connection Assistance Program – A. Burroughs
Mr. Burroughs provided to the Committee that in recent years, the JWSC has taken a proactive approach to system expansion that will allow access to public water and sewer systems for existing residences and businesses that were previously unable to connect to the public systems. One such example of a current project that will accomplish this goal is the expansion of the water and sewer systems in the Arco neighborhood. The JWSC would like to allow these existing homes and businesses to connect to the system without placing an unnecessary burden upon the property owners. By connecting to the public water and sewer systems, many potential customers will be able to remove existing septic tanks and private wells if they so choose. This proposed policy accomplishes the goal of allowing these customers to connect to the systems without having to provide a cash outlay that would be burdensome to the customer base. The JWSC will allow customers to pay monthly installments towards the total cost of the Capital Improvement Fee and operational fees associated with new accounts. Financing charges increase as the years financed increases to offset increased administrative costs associated with maintaining these agreements. If approved, this Connection Assistance Policy would ideally become part of the annual Rate Resolution and reviewed annually for current market conditions.
Commissioner Cook made a motion seconded by Commissioner Stephens to move that the Finance Committee recommend the full Commission approve the creation of a Connection Assistance Policy effective July 1, 2022. Motion carried 3-0-0.
- Financial Statement Month End May 31, 2022 – L. Roberts
Mrs. Roberts presented the financial statement for the month ending May 31, 2022. She reviewed the Balance Sheet with the Committee noting that this is a strong balance sheet. She briefly explained the Prepaid Expense, Fixed Assets, and Unearned Revenue accounts. She also highlighted details on the Summary of Revenues and Summary of Expenses. Mrs. Roberts briefly reviewed line items on the Cash Balances and the Project Report, as well as providing an update on Investments.
Committee Chairman Duncan asked if there were any other items to discuss.
There being no further business, Chairman Duncan adjourned the meeting at 4:21 p.m.