Every three years, Helix applies for and receives a District Transparency Certificate of Excellence from the Special District Leadership Foundation. Applying for the certificate requires a comprehensive review of all that we do, from how we conduct public meetings and handle public information requests, to how we disclose financial transactions and the results of our annual audit, to the information we are required to share on our website. That’s why we apply – to assure that we are an open book to the communities we serve.
If you want to know how Helix is managing the quality and reliability of your tap water, we recommend reading two reports that we publish each year in the fall. Start with our annual report, where we share our performance metrics – everything we accomplished last year. Then take a look at our budget. You don’t have to read the whole budget, just the introduction, where Helix General Manager Carlos Lugo explains what we plan to do, and why, in the year ahead.
This fall, we have one more document to browse: Our 2020 strategic plan, where we outline Helix’s goals and objectives for the next five years.
You’ll find the links to these documents below.
Our Annual Report
We make our annual report easy to scan. There are articles to read, but you’ll also find a lot of photos, diagrams and pages where we display the performance metrics for each of Helix’s departments. Do you know how much water we treated last year? We treated 14.8 billion gallons. We also replaced 15,100 feet of cast-iron pipe and each of our meter readers walked 2,340 miles. That’s one of our favorite metrics, and there are many more throughout the report.
“This report is where a customer can see what water rates pay for,” said Helix General Manager Carlos Lugo. “Purchasing imported water accounts for about half of the district’s annual expenses, and here you can see the other half of our budget – managing two dams, what we do at our treatment plant, how we maintain our infrastructure and what administration includes, from customer service to finance and IT.”
The report also includes the district’s financial statements, and before that, the financial highlights that defined the year.
“The financial highlights show what happens to the district’s finances when it rains in our local mountains, and how we flattened expenses in response to the pandemic,” said Helix Director of Administrative Services Jennifer Bryant. “These are the two things defining the district’s financial position, but they’re easy to miss amongst all the numbers in the financial statements.”
“We want you to know what we do here, each day and every year, to ensure the quality and reliability of your water service,” said Lugo.
We hope you browse our three documents.