Billing Procedures: All accounts are read approximately every 30 days. All bills are calculated based on the meter readings registered, and sewer charges are based on water consumption. A minimum monthly charge will be assessed for 200 cubic feet of consumption, whether such quantity of water is used or not. Under certain circumstances, the City may estimate a customer’s bill. Those instances include emergencies, inability of City personnel to gain access to a customer’s premises, or extreme weather conditions. If the bill is underestimated, the customer has the right to pay the amount due in installments.
Payment Requirements and Penalty: By the time the customer receives a water/sewer bill, the service has already been used, therefore, bills are due and payable upon receipt. Payments may be made at our authorized paying agency, Hy-Vee, if paid by the 17th of the month. Payments made in person, by mail, or online, must be RECEIVED by the City by 5:00 pm on the 20th of each month. If the 20th falls on a Saturday, the due date will be the 19th. If the 20th falls on a Sunday, the due date will be on the 21st. At the expiration of the due date, the customer’s account will be considered delinquent and a ten percent penalty will be applied.
Disconnection or termination of service may be requested by any of the following:
A water disconnection request signed and dated by the customer.
A work order authorized by the City in accordance with City Ordinance.
An application for service submitted by a new customer.
A request for disconnection must be made at least one half day in advance. A reading will be taken on the requested date, and a final bill will be processed. Any amount outstanding to the City will be deducted from the security deposit before a refund is made by check.
Disconnection and reconnection of service due to non-payment: If a customer’s account becomes delinquent, the service is subject to disconnection for non-payment. A notice of delinquency will be mailed to the customer stating the bill must be paid within ten (10) days. If payment is not received, a door hanger may be left as a courtesy, giving the customer a final notice before disconnection. If payment is made after a door hanger is sent out, then the delinquent bill and a $20 fee will be collected.
After failure to pay the bill, the customer must complete a new service contract, pay the amount of the delinquent bill, current bill, the $20 service fee, an increased deposit, and a $50 reconnection fee.
When the Customer Service Representative (CSR) submits a reading to the billing clerk that appears to be high, the CSR will be sent to verify the reading. Leaks, whether large or small, are the single most common cause of high water bills. If a high reading is indicated, the CSR will make a reasonable effort to notify someone on the premises. City personnel will not enter the home to check faucets or toilets.
Leak adjustment policy: A leak adjustment may be given when a leak has caused the customer’s bill to be at least four times the average usage, and when the customer can show a valid receipt for parts or repair to the leak. One leak adjustment per water meter may be allowed in a twelve (12) month period and will be given to the highest bill of the leak period. The leak adjustment will equal an amount not to exceed fifty percent (50%) of the cost of the leak over and above the average amount of the customer’s bill.
Meter testing: If a customer suspects the water meter is registering inaccurately, he/she may request that the City test the meter. If such test indicates the margin for error to be greater than 1.5%, the City will adjust the inaccurate consumption by the appropriate percentage. If said meter test proves the margin for error to be less than 1.5%, no adjustment will be made and the customer will be billed $25 for the cost of making the test. The City, at its own expense, may test any City meter.
As of 1973, all water meters are purchased from, owned, and maintained by the City. It is, however, the responsibility of the customer to ensure that no damages are made to the meter as a result of abuse, vandalism, or freezing. The cost to repair any damages caused by such conditions will be charged to the customer and/or property owner.
As of 2013, all meters are read by radio frequency. However, the ordinance requires owners to physically read their meter and compare to the most recent bill, at least once per year. If there is a discrepancy of more than 1,000 cubic feet, the City must be notified and the bill will be adjusted accordingly.