Mohawk Valley Water Authority – March 17, 2014


Chairman DeLia called the meeting to order at 5:02 PM and opened with the Pledge of Allegiance.


Roll Call:  Present: Rocco Arcuri, Dennis Bova, Bruce Brodsky, Vincent Coyne, Elis DeLia, Mark Ford, Mitch Ford, Scott Mahardy, Frank Mutolo, Bette Szesny, Scott Williams and Steve Zywiak.  Also Present:  Dick Goodney, Mario Bequer, Jim Korfonta, Scott Gorgas, Anne Milograno and Ken Bobrow, Esq.


Chairman DeLia presided and Suzanne Harmon took the minutes.


Approval of the January 21, 2014 Minutes

Motion made by Mr. Arcuri to approve the minutes.     Seconded by: Mr. Bova

Vote:  (11) Ayes   (0) Nays   (1) Abstain  - Scott Mahardy   (0) Absent      Motion Carried.


Resolution: Decision Regarding Establishment of Water Rates, Fees and Charges Effective April 1, 2014

An increase of 2.9% rate increase to fund a $21.987 million dollar budget for FY 2014-15.  The main reasons are a reduction in overall water system consumption of approximately 4.0%.  Employee benefit increases including: retirement premiums increasing $61,000; health insurance premiums increasing $89,000; workers compensation premium increasing 43%.  Additional principal payments due on the 2012 revenue bonds of $150,000.  Offsetting these increases is an overall reduction in operating expenses in other areas resulting in an overall budgeted expense reduction of .75% on the $22 million budget.  Federal unfunded mandates for covering storage tanks cost $26,000 and annual debt service on the bids for this is $1,845,000.

Mr. Arcuri made a motion to approve the water rates, fees and charges as presented.  Seconded by: Mr. Coyne

Vote:  (7) Ayes   (5) Nays   (0) Abstain   (0) Absent      Motion Carried.


Mr. Becher explained that the next three resolutions are standard resolutions approved at this time each year.  They pertain to the MVWA waiving back water charges on properties that are sold by municipalities for tax foreclosures and then remarketed to new owners and put back onto the tax rolls.  Mr. Becher stated that the three resolutions are for fiscal year 2014-15 and shall expire on March 31, 2015.


Resolution: Water Charges on County and City Owned One to Four Family Residential Structures

Moved by:  Ms. Szesny     Seconded by: Mr. Williams

Vote:  (12) Ayes   (0) Nays   (0) Abstain   (0) Absent            Motion Carried.

Resolution: Water Charges on County and City Owned Commercial Properties

Moved by:  Ms. Szesny     Seconded by: Mr. Williams

Vote:  (12) Ayes   (0) Nays   (0) Abstain   (0) Absent            Motion Carried.

Resolution: Water Charges on County and City Owned Vacant Lots

Moved by:  Ms. Szesny     Seconded by: Mr. Williams

Vote:  (12) Ayes   (0) Nays   (0) Abstain   (0) Absent            Motion Carried.


Approval: Quarterly Investment Statement – 3rd Quarter Ending December 31, 2013

Mr. Korfonta stated that this is an investment statement of the MVWA trust funds.  The Board has been presented with these statements every quarter for approval.

Moved by:  Mr. Brodsky.     Seconded by: Mr. Mutolo

Vote:  (12) Ayes   (0) Nays   (0) Abstain   (0) Absent            Motion Carried.


Committee Reports:.

Finance:  Mr. Korfonta stated that there are three months of financial reports in the Board member binders (Dec. 2013 – Feb. 2014).  In December of 2013 total revenues reflected on the Statement of Revenues and Expenses totaled $16 million, which is $270,000 lower than the prior year.  Metered water consumption revenue decreased $333,000 compared to the prior year.  This lower level of water sales reflects lower water consumption by 21 million cubic feet.  Following nine months of activity, operating cash is down by $600,000 year-to-date.  Fortunately, the MVWA has had a slight recovery over the last few months. We are still down 16 million cubic feet from last year.  The reduction is partly due to the weather.  The MVWA is below budgeted revenue by 3-4%.   

Mr. Becher stated that other water systems in the northeast are very similar.  In the month of February, there were more water main breaks than normal.


Executive Director’s Report

         The MVWA received a grant from the State for a consolidation study for the western side of Oneida County for water supply.  Three water suppliers; MVWA, City of Rome and Oneida are involved and three towns; Vernon, Verona and Sherrill.  The amount of the grant is $112,500.00 and the MVWA is the lead agency.   The RFP to hire consultants will be led by the MVWA.  The draft RFP will be sent to the other five parties for review and then sent to the consultants in the next two to three weeks.  It will come back to the MVWA board for approval.

         The granulated activated carbon (GAC) change out at the Water Treatment Plant is scheduled for June through July of this year.

         The MVWA is expecting the four town permit by the middle of April.  To Mr. Becher’s knowledge, the DEC has not scheduled a public hearing   At this point, the DEC feels that all of their questions have been adequately answered.  

         The Automated Meter Reading project has ten towers up and operating now.  The MVWA is continuing to go house to house converting meters with touch pads/modems.  There are close to 6,000 active right now.  The MVWA is billing off of those as we receive them.  It will be approximately 3 years before completion.    


Old Business:

Shared Service Agreement with the Town of Westmoreland for Meter Reading and Billing

The Town of Westmoreland formed the Tindall Corners Consolidated Water District and is responsible for the construction, operation and maintenance of the water district.  MVWA is empowered under the Public Authorities Law to enter into cooperative agreements with municipalities for the provision of water facility services to municipalities within the MVWA service area.  The Town maintains and operates the Tindall Corners Consolidated Water District which serves approximately 145 customers, comprised of homes and businesses.  The MVWA will procure and install meters for said customers using Neptune radio interface meters.  The pricing for the unit and interface unit, plus installation, will be $190 per unit.  MVWA will install the meters, modems and readers and will invoice the Town after installation.  The MVWA shall have no responsibility to install a meter until there is a working valve just before the meter. 

The Town shall pay a fee of $2.00 per customer billed by MVWA for the services it renders under this Agreement.  They will also reimburse the MVWA for expenses for postage and bill form printing.   


Motion made to approve the agreement by: Mr. Coyne.   Seconded by:  Mr. Brodsky.

Vote:  (12) Ayes   (0) Nays   (0) Abstain   (0) Absent            Motion Carried.


Chairman DeLia adjourned the meeting at 6:35 PM.


Respectfully submitted,



Suzanne M. Harmon, Secretary 

Mohawk Valley Water Authority