TITLE 13. PUBLIC SERVICESTITLE 13. PUBLIC SERVICES\Chapter 13.01 GENERAL UTILITY PROVISIONS

A.    UTILITY SERVICES: Utility services means, sewer, water, gas and electric power services.

B.    SINGLE DEPOSIT FOR CUSTOMER: Each customer applicant for electric, gas, water and sewer utility services shall pay upon approval of such utility service application, a single deposit for all utility services in an amount not to exceed an amount equal to the expected average bills for a two (2) month period for such utility service for any of the following reasons:

1.    Customer has no credit history with the City of Belleville,

2.    Customer has an unpaid, delinquent utility bill with the City of Belleville,

3.    Customer has interfered with, tampered with or diverted utility service,

4.    Customer has been turned off due to an unpaid utility bill two times in a 12 month period.

The City of Belleville may waive the collection of a utility deposit if the customer can produce a credit reference from a previous utility to establish credit worthiness.  The credit reference cannot be older than 24 months from the date received and must reflect at least 12 months history with eleven on time payments.  The credit reference provided must be in the same name as the new account being established.

C.    DEPOSIT REFUNDS:  The deposit plus interest is returned when service is discontinued, subject to the following.  Any unpaid bills will be deducted from this amount before the refund is issued.  If moving within the city, the deposit will transfer to the new address.  Deposits will be credited back to the account after 11 on time payments paid by the 15th of the month in a 12 month period.

D.    DEPOSIT INTEREST: Simple interest is paid on cash deposits and applied as a credit to the account once per year.  The interest rate is set each year by the K.S.A. 12-822.

(Ord. 662; Ord. 775; Prior Code Section 13.08.070; Ord. 863; Code 2016)

A.    A connection fee will be paid for each utility at time of application for metered service.  This fee shall be paid prior to connection of utility, and will be set from time to time by Resolution by the governing body.

B.    All charges for metered services, to the last reading of the meter, and any or all flat monthly charges billed on city utility bills shall be due and payable upon receipt of such bill each month.  No penalty shall be due if such bill is paid by the fifteenth (15) of the month.  If the fifteenth falls on a weekend or holiday, the bills shall be due on the next working day.  After the fifteen of the month, all amounts due shall be assessed a 5 % penalty.

C.    If payment of all amounts due payable is not received within Twenty (20) calendar days of the Billing Date shown on the bill, the bill will be declared delinquent, a Delinquency Notice will be prepared and mailed, advising the customer of such delinquency and setting a Due Date for payment, after which the services will be discontinued. A Default Charge shall be due and payable, in addition to all other outstanding charges and penalties, for any bill declared delinquent for which a Delinquency Notice has been prepared.

D.    If payment of all amounts due is not received by the Due Date on the Delinquent Notice, which is normally the 28th of the month, (unless the 28th falls on a holiday or weekend, then it will be the next regular work day), services at the service address shall be discontinued. Before services are restored, the total amount of all outstanding charges and penalties due plus a reconnect/non-payment charge must be paid.  If a customer has multiple services addresses for which utility service is provided by the City of Belleville, services shall be discontinued at all service addresses if the City does not receive all outstanding or delinquent charges and penalties for all service addresses by the due date on the delinquent notice.  Before services are restored, the total amount of all outstanding or delinquent charges and penalties due, plus a non-payment/reconnect charge must be paid.

E.    If any payments are made to the City Clerk or the City of Belleville using a draft, check or any other form of negotiable instrument drawn on an account of a state or federally chartered bank, or savings and loan, and such instrument is returned by such institution not paid for reason of (1) insufficient funds, (2) account closed, or (3) any other non-payment status; the City Clerk shall charge the issuer of such instrument a returned check charge per each instrument returned.

G.    In the event the draft, check or any other form of negotiable instrument is not paid in full within Seven (7) days after notice has been given to the maker or drawer that such check, draft or any other form of negotiable instrument was not paid upon presentation, all metered service shall be discontinued and the drawer of such check or draft will be summoned to municipal court.

H.    The exact amount of the customer charges, penalties and fees authorized herein shall be established, set and revised from time to time by resolution of the Governing Body.

(Code 2016)

In case any meter shall stop or for any reason fail to register properly, or upon failure of the city to read any meter, the City of Belleville may estimate the monthly bill on the basis of the average monthly quantity consumed during the previous month, or the same month the previous year if available.

(Code 2016)

When a City of Belleville utility customer has been overcharged or undercharged for service as the result of an incorrect reading of a meter, incorrect calculation of the amount of service supplied or billed, or for other similar reasons, the amount of the overcharge shall be adjusted, refunded or credited to the customer and the amount of the undercharge shall be billed to the customer.  The adjustment shall be without interest and the period of adjustment shall be for the entire period of inaccuracy or three (3) years, whichever is lesser.

(Code 2016)

A.    The employees or designated representatives of the city shall have free access at any reasonable hour to all parts of any consumer’s premises for the purpose of making inspection and repairs and for reading meters.  Any fence that encloses a City of Belleville meter, must have a gate or gates that remain unlocked and functional for city employees to access the metered services.  All dogs, whether confined within a fence or kept on a leash, must not hinder or impede with any city employee performing their duties for the City of Belleville

B.    The City of Belleville requires that a clearance zone exists for all metered services.  Customers shall keep an area at least two (2) feet on each side and at least four (4) feet in front of each meter clear of all obstructions or vegetation growth.

(Code 2016)

The city reserves the right to shut off any metered service at any time for the purpose of making repairs or for any other reason. A reasonable effort will be made to contact the customer prior to interruption, unless it is an emergency situation.

(Code 2016)

If any person shall turn on or cause same to be turned on any metered service upon any premises without authority from the City of Belleville, he or she shall be deemed guilty of a violation of this chapter.

(Code 2016)

A.    Consumers shall be held responsible for any damage done to meters on their premises from any cause other than ordinary wear and tear. The city shall keep all meters in repair and proper working condition without cost to the consumer except where the meter is damaged by neglect or fault of the consumer in which case the city shall collect from the consumer the cost of repairing or replacing any meter damaged while supplying a customer’s premises.

B.    No consumer or other person shall repair or remove any meter or break any seal on a meter, nor tamper with or interfere with the proper registration of any meter, other than persons authorized by the city.

C.    All meters shall remain the property of the city and may be removed from the property of the consumer, at any time for the purpose of testing and repairing same or upon discontinuance of service.

(Code 2016)

All meters shall be tested and inspected without cost to the consumer as often as deemed sufficient by the director of utilities in order to insure their thorough repair and accurate registration. A consumer may request that a meter be tested. If, upon test by the director of utilities, the meter shall be proved to be accurate or within industry standards, the meter shall be deemed correct and a charge as will be determined by the director of utilities will be made to the customer. When a meter is found to be measuring incorrectly an adjustment shall be made as established in section 13.01.040.

(Code 2016)