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ACCOUNTING FOR RESULTS:
Activity Based Costing

RATE STUDIES
Last Updated: August 21, 2007

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Another component of activity based costing is using cost based data to establish fees for rate setting purposes. Mark D. Abrahams has develop several rates or conducted numerous fee analyses including:

Cost Allocation Plans

  • Preparing two city-wide cost allocation plans and departmental indirect cost proposals for the City of Cambridge.
  • Preparing two city-wide cost allocation plans and departmental indirect cost proposals for the City of Brockton.
  • Preparing one city-wide cost allocation plan and departmental indirect cost proposals for the City of Portland.
  • Preparing department-wide cost allocation plan for the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection.
  • Preparing a city-wide cost allocation plan to detemine the costs incurred on behalf ot Quincy Colleger for the City of Quincy.
  • Preparing a district-wide cost allocation plan to determine the cost of educating a vocational student for the Silver Lake Regional School District.

Sewer Financing Plans

  • Developing a five-year sewer financial plan for the Town of Provincetown.  The project involved developing a baseline of sewer revenues and expenditures including the financing of over $15 million of sewer expansions and options to reduce one of the State’s highest sewer rates to provide rate relief
  • Developing a 10-year sewer financial plan for the Town of Millbury.  This project involved developing a FY 2008 sewer rate, sewer infrastructure assets to comply with GASBS No. 34, and a 10-year projection of sewer revenues and expenditures including the financing of over $40 million of sewer expansions.
  • Developing a sewer financial plan for the Town of Nantucket. This project involved analyzing the potential for two separate enterprise funds to finance the two waste water treatment facilities, and developing separate and combined sewer rates for the island.
  • Developing a sewer financial plan for the Town of Hopkinton.  This project involved reconstructing the Town’s sewer project finances from 1986 and developing a 20-year revenue and expenditure plan through the remaining life of the debt.
  • Developing a sewer financial plan for the Town of West Boylston.  The project developed a betterment assessment plan to finance the sewer expansion project and developing annual sewer rates.
  • Developing sewer financial plans for the towns of Concord, Whitman and the City of Gloucester.
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  • Water and Sewer Rate Studies
  • Serving as rate consultant to the Boston Water and Sewer Commission.
  • Performing a rate analysis of the affordability of a proposed secondary treatment facility for the City of New Bedford.
  • Developed sewer rates for the Town of Webster including the development of a data base to allocate capital and operations and maintenance costs to flow and loading considerations.
  • Developing materials and conducting training sessions for integrated solid waste management user fees and enterprise fund accounting for Massachusetts officials for the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection.
  • Assisting the City of Lowell to develop revised trash, water, sewer and other fees and to provide accounting support.
  • Implementing an enterprise fund to account for landfill operations for hteTown of Mattapoisett.
  • Developing a cost analysis of trash and landfill operations for the Town of Foxboro.
  • Conducting a cost/benefit analysis for the Town of Marshfield to implement enterprise funds for sewer, water and landfill operations.
  • Conducting a technical assistance program to provide rate making and accounting assistance to MWRA communities for the communities to develop conservation based rates, full cost recovery rates, and enterprise the fund accounting systems to support water and sewer operations, and to conduct several regional training programs.
  • Assisting the Town of Arlington to develop new fully-costed water and sewer rates
  • Conducting a water cost of service study and prepared a rate filing to the Maine Public Utility Commission for the Kennebec Water District.
  • Conducting a water cost of service study for the Providence Water Supply Board.
  • Analyzing the City/PWSB due to/due from account and preparing a surcharge filing for the Providence Water Supply Board.
  • Managing two water cost of service and rate structure for the Newport Water Department for filing before the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission. The projects included performing revenue projections and sensitivity analysis on our microcomputer rate model and serving as an expert witness.
  • Developing three water cost of service and rate structure studies and a surcharge filing for the Pawtucket Water Supply Board for submission to the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission for interim and permanent rate revision requests and serving as an Expert Witness.
  • Designing an accounting, billing and collections system and writing a policies and procedures manual to support operations and construction grant activities for the Narragansett Bay Water Quality Management District. The project included a review of the billings and collection process, purchasing and cash disbursements, payroll, fixed assets, inventory, work order, general ledger, construction grants and cash management.
  • Developing revenue requirements for the Narragansett Bay Water Quality Management District Commission. The projects involved reviewing administration, interceptor sewer, treatment, pumping, debt service, insurance, interest on working capital, equipment, and capital cost; participating in a public review process; and filing a retail sewer user charge tariff before the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission.
  • Conducting a wholesale rate methodology and impact study project for the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority. The project involved developing a water and sewer database for 51 rate-paying communities, developing wholesale rate methodology policies for the MWRA and developing a detailed management plan for the MWRA to implement.
  • Conducting a Due Diligence review of the MWRA's most recent bond offering.
  • Conducting water and/or sewer rate studies for the cities of Chelsea, Everett, Gloucester, Lowell, Newport, Providence, Pawtucket, Quincy, and Somerville, the Narragansett Bay Commission, the Hull Permanent Sewer Commission, and the towns of Andover, Arlington, Ashburnham, Ashland, Bellingham, Canton, Concord, Franklin, Hopkinton, Longmeadow, Marlbehead, Millbury, Nantucket, Natick, Norwell, North Andover, Plymouth, Provincetown, Southbridge, West Boylston and West Groton.
  • Conducting detailed management reviews of New England wastewater facilities for the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission and Region I of the Environmental Protection Agency. The project involved reviewing nine facilities, conducting workshops and writing the New England Wastewater Management Guide for use by facility and municipal officials. Major topics included cost of service, cost recovery, budgeting, accounting, purchasing, personnel and information systems.
  • Co-author of the Environmental Protection Agency's Wastewater Utility Management Manual. This manual includes discussions on utility comprehensive diagnostic reviews, energy management, financial management, contracting for professional services and contract operations.
  • Assisting the Cities of Worcester, Holyoke, and Lowell, and the Towns of Arlington, Canton and Whitman in developing water and sewer enterprise fund policies and procedures for budgeting, accounting, rate setting and financial reporting.
  • Developing water and sewer funds for the Cities of Newton and Lawrence and the Towns of Stoughton, Bridgewater, Plymouth and Brewster.
  • Developing fixed assets accounting systems for the Cities of Worcester, Lowell and Holyoke, the Narragansett Bay Commission, Pawtucket Water Supply Board and the Towns of Whitman, Canton and East Greenwich to support an enterprise fund.
  • Developing and implementing new policies and procedures for the Danvers Electric Light Division. The project involved reviewing and enhancing all Divisional activities and writing an accounting manual.
  • Developing a wastewater grant accounting systems for the Scarborough Sanitary District, Hull Permanent Sewer Commission, and the Narragansett Bay Commission.
  • Conducting two management studies for the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection.
  • Implementing water and sewer billing systems for the City of Lawrence water and sewer funds and the City of Everett.
  • Conducting wastewater construction grant closeout reviews for the City of Lowell and the Towns of Marshfield and Stonington.
  • Conducting water and/or sewer rate studies for the Towns of West Boylston, Marblehead, Andover, Salem, North Andover, Plymouth, Canton, Franklin, Norwell, Hopkinton, Concord, and the Cities of New Bedford, Lowell, Everett and Chelsea.
  • Conducting a sewer betterment program for the Town of West Boylston.
  • Developing sewer financial plans for the City of Gloucester and the towns of West Boylston, Whitman, Hopkinton and Webster.
  • Conducting a wastewater betterment cash flow analysis for the Wayland Wastewater Commission.
  • Developing a wastewater grant accounting systems for the Scarborough Sanitary District, Hull Permanent Sewer Commission, and the Narragansett Bay Commission.
  • Reviewing the water and sewer billing system for the Town of Duxbury.
  • Conducting detailed management reviews of New England wastewater facilities for the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission and Region I of the Environmental Protection Agency. The project involved reviewing nine facilities, conducting workshops and writing the New England Wastewater Management Guide for use by facility and municipal officials. Major topics included cost of service, cost recovery, budgeting, accounting, purchasing, personnel and information systems.
  • Conducting wastewater construction grant closeout reviews for the City of Lowell and the Towns of Marshfield and Stonington.
  • Conducting a management audit of the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority's Deer Island Construction Project for the Massachusetts Department of Construction Projects.
  • Developing an activity based costing training program for Unit VI of the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority.
  • Developing performance based management programs for the water and sewer departments for the cities of Worcester and Leominster and the towns of Barnstable and North Andover.
  • Developing performance based management programs and performance based budgets for the water and sewer departments for the cities of Indianapolis, San Diego, and Milwaukee.
  • Serving as the accountant for the Wayland - Sudbury Septage Treatment Facility and the Wayland Wastewater Commission.

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