February 13, 2024 Minutes

Kiowa Water and WasteWater Authority

Call to Order

The regular meeting of the Kiowa Water and Wastewater Authority was called to order on February 13, 2024, at 6:00pm by Eric Whitman with the following in attendance: 

Directors: Teresa Parker, Laurel Brown, and Bret Wager. 

Also present: 
Rick Kolm, Town of Kiowa Mayor, Terry Howard, Town of Kiowa Board Member, Kim Boyd, Town Administrator, Sasha Davidson, Town Clerk/Utility Billing Clerk, and Paul Grant, Headways Consultants who arrived at 6:05pm. 

Director Tim Craft attempted to connect on Zoom but was unable to join. 

Consent Items

Approval of Agenda 

President Eric Whitman entertained a motion to approve the agenda. Bret Wager made the motion to approve the agenda. Laurel Brown seconded the motion. Motion passed with no discussion. 

Approval of Minutes 

President Eric Whitman entertained a motion to approve of the minutes. It was noted that President Eric Whitman's name was misspelled in one spot, but he stated it was ok. Teresa Parker made the motion to approve the minutes. Bret Wager seconded the motion. Motion passed with no discussion. 

Financial Report

The YTD Profit and Loss Report was looked at by the board. President Eric Whitman entertained a motion to approve the report. Bret Wager made the motion to approve the report. Teresa Parker seconded the motion. Motion passed with no discussion. 

Staff Reports

Sasha Davidson 

Express Bill Pay/RVS Software Bills. - The customers who do not wish to have paper water bills are no longer receiving them. Each customer was contacted by email to confirm that they did or did not want a paper water bill and so they were corrected if they were wrong. In addition, Express Bill Pay will send an email if a new customer does not want a paper bill, so this can be noted at the beginning. There was a brief discussion about the cost of using Express Bill Pay for the customer. There is a small surcharge to use the system either from your bank account or through a credit card. Most customers utilize the automatic bank withdraw each month. 

Shut Off/Delinquent Notices. - There were eleven shut off notices and seven delinquent/overdue notices mailed out. All eleven customers who received shut-off notices took care of their bills. The seven who received the overdue notices will receive shut-off notices next month if they do not take care of their bills. 

January 2024/December 2023 System Totals Reports - large leak at the water tower with loss 600,000+ gallons. Included with the System Totals Report was a chart and graph showing the amount of water produced/used from January 2022 - now. This included the percentage of loss each month. It was noted that the amount of water used each month as the pattern goes is fairly standardized. The amount of water produced can be a little less predictable. It was decided to update the chart/graph each month to keep track of what is happening with water usage and production.

Bulk Water- there were 3100 gallons of bulk water used this month. There is a possibility of BurnCo wanting to purchase bulk water from us, but that has not been decided yet. The Fire department did not use any this month. The process of purchasing and charging for bulk water was discussed briefly. 

Paul Grant 

Water tower - There are still problems getting the auto dialer to work correctly. The phone company has been out twice, but the problem is still not fixed. The phone company was supposed to be out to fix the issue on February 8th, but they did not show up. Consequent phone calls with the company have been frustrating and unhelpful. Paul will keep trying to contact them to find a resolution to the problem. There is a center pipe that keeps getting cold, so they have added heat tape (powered by a 110 outlet in the shed) and have insulated the transducer. Still need to see about getting a fence put around the tower. A request was made to the clerk to find out the amount of property around the tower so it can be determined the amount of fence needed with a gate for a truck to access. There are a couple antennas on the top of the tower that are believed to belong to Direct link. There is a concern about whether there is a franchise agreement in place for this. Currently, there does not appear to be any paperwork. 

Meters - They plan to have the remainder of the meters replaced in Ute Village on February 14 and 16. 

Biosolids Report-Annual report for the sewer plant based on the amount of sludge hauled out of the wastewater treatment plant, which is done quarterly. The sewer comes into the plant, gets treated, gets filtered into the digester, and then once there is enough build up it gets removed and is either injected as a liquid into approved sites, or is dried and spread out. 

Neptune Update -RVS had sent a software update that had to be done before we could add the new transfer files, which was done last week. This week RVS will be contacted to upload the new Neptune 360 formatted transfer files. Once that is completed, we should be able to get the system working. It will not be ready for the February meter reads but should hopefully be ready for the March reads. Once the software is installed, it should be a pretty simple process to upload the information from the mobile reader to the system. With the reader it should only take about a half hour to read all the meters. The meters will have a radio transmitter which will allow them to be read by the mobile meter. The mobile reader's battery should last a day or two between charges. At this time, there are probably about 190 meters that are ready to be read by Neptune. 

Standard Operating Procedures - There is one for water main repairs and they are working on one for the district. A Yoke/Meter set up was shown and discussed about how they work and where the leaks typically take place on the bend on "house side" which the opposite side of the meter from the shut off which is on the "street side". Curb stops for each meter would make shutting the water off easier if there is a leak. There are certain sections of town that have curb stops, but not all. If there is not a curb stop, then sometimes the main/whole town must be shut off to repair the leak. If a meter needs to be shut down for delinquency and a lock put on, there will need to be a policy made about consequences/fine for cutting off the lock. Suggestions need to be considered to make sure there are clear policies for repairs, shut offs, etc. 

Wastewater Plant- One of the inflow valves is not working. Velocity is working on coming up with bids to get that fixed. The state will be coming to do an inspection of the wastewater system at the end of the month. 

Kim Boyd 

Distribution System -there are some upgrades that need to be made. One of the things is the yokes and who is responsible for repairs/replacements especially if there is a curb stop shut off available or not. It has been suggested that we try to upgrade all residents, so they have a curb stop shut off for their property. Colorado Rural Water Association has been contacted to find out where we might find some grant studies to help pay for a project like this.

Project Needs Assessment - Wright Water $10,000 grant has been used up for the project needs assessment. The overall budget for this assessment was $12,000, so KWWA must pay the remaining $2,000 out of pocket. The assessment should almost be completed so then the next phase can be started. 

Reporting Requirements - Ms. Boyd reported it had come to her attention that the KWWA had failed to comply with a reporting requirement in that Director Craft has never submitted a conflict-of-interest form (COI) when all other board members did and that out of the 27 filings with the Secretary of State his was the only COI form missing from those filings, to date. Director Parker stated that she would contact KWWA's Attorney through email to discuss this issue. 

Public Comments

No one signed up for public comment. 

Old Business

Hardship request -A customer requested an extension for payment on a repair. The board discussed and President Eric Whitman entertained a motion to approve the request by the customer to extend the payments for the yoke. Laurel Brown made a motion to allow the payments to be extended until May 31st• 2024, at $50.00/month to pay off the repair fee. Teresa Parker seconded the motion. Motion passed with no discussion. 

New Business

Resolution 01, Series 2024: Resolution to Adopt Budget - DOLA stated that they need resolution, to adopt the budget, and a cover letter along with the budget. President Eric Whitman read aloud the cover letter and entertained a motion to approve. Teresa Parker made a motion to accept the resolution cover letter for DOLA. Bret Wager seconded the motion. Motion passed with no discussion. 

Policy 24-001: Water & Sewer -Division of Work & Expense - Language from the code and processes that were already in place were incorporated into this draft policy. It is based off a discussion about the meters, yokes and repairs and aging infrastructure. A workshop to discuss may be scheduled in the future. 

Rules & Regulations for Sewer Main - Paul will send an SOP regarding what they have to the board and a decision can be made if they can combine this with the 24-001 Water & Sewer Policy or make it into a separate policy. 

Water & Sewer Rate Increases - A water rate study was conducted in 2011. Water rate increases need to be based off a study and not just a random number. There needs to be a substantiated reason for the increase. The board is going to look at the report and give feedback. Currently, we are waiting for the Colorado Rural Water Association to do an updated one, but for now the 2011 study gives us something to start with. Many water authorities have an automatic 3-5% yearly raise built into their water rates to keep up with rising costs and inflation. At this time, a base rate increase and a tier step increase could be based off the 2011 study as a place to start, as well as comparing similar municipalities and seeing where they are based on the information that was provided earlier in the week. President Eric Whitman entertained a motion to table the water and sewer increase until the next meeting. Bret Wager made a motion to table the discussion until the next meeting. Laurel Brown seconded the motion. Motion passed with no discussion. 

Executive Session - It was proposed to schedule a special meeting for the Executive Session since the meeting ran out of time. An email will be sent out to reschedule. 






President Eric Whitman entertained a motion to close out the meeting. Teresa Parker made the motion to adjourn, Bret Wager seconded, and the motion passed with no discussion. The meeting adjourned at 6:56pm. 

The next regular meeting will be on Wednesday, March 12, 2024, at Town Hall at 6:00pm 

Minutes Approved by: Eric Whitman, President 

Sasha Davidson, Town Clerk/Utilities Billing Clerk