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A. Establishment of credit. Each applicant for which utility service is requested from the city shall be required to establish credit with the city in the following manner:
1. The applicant shall make a cash deposit with the city to secure the payment of any bills for services to be furnished by the city under the application.
2. If an applicant has previously been a consumer of city utilities and has paid all previous bills in a timely manner for a period of three consecutive years immediately prior to the date the applicant previously ceased to take service from the city, provided such service occurred within one year from the date of new application for service, then credit shall be deemed to be established without the requirement of a cash deposit.
3. Establishment and re-establishment of credit is more fully described in the city policy "Late Fees and Deposits" which may be modified from time to time.
B. Re-establishment of credit.
1. An applicant who previously has been a customer of the city and whose utility service has been discontinued by the city because of nonpayment of utility charges or other reasons, shall be required to re-establish credit by paying a deposit, all prior remaining unpaid charges and by paying utility bills when regularly due.
2. A customer who fails to pay bills before they become past due shall be required to pay the delinquent portion of said bill and any late charges prescribed by the city.
3. Whenever, for nonpayment of utility bills, or for other just reason, the service of any user of city utilities has been severed, the customer will be required to deposit an amount equal to three times the average estimated monthly bill to re-establish credit.
4. Re-establishment of credit by a customer who fails to pay bills under this section shall apply to all accounts in the name of the customer, residential or commercial, and to any new accounts which the customer wishes to establish during the period in which the customer is establishing credit. This section applies to tenants as well as property owners.
C. Deposit required for utility applicants whose electrical meter seals have been broken or whose water meters have been tampered with in an unauthorized manner.
1. Tampering: Whenever, for nonpayment of utility bills, or for other just reason, the service of any user of city utilities has been severed, and the electrical meter seal is removed by persons other than authorized employees of the city, or if the water meter is turned on or tampered with, the person to whom said meter is assigned by account shall not be furnished utility service again within the city without first paying all unpaid utility bills, together with any penalties and charges associated with the meter tampering.
(a) The utilities of said applicant shall be shut off until such time as a deposit, amount to be determined by the city, is paid, together with the penalty for meter tampering and any other applicable charges shown in the current city fee schedule (note: if the water and electrical meters to a property are both tampered with, then multiple penalties may apply).
(b) If the city finds that the customer continues to tamper with his meter or meters in any effort to secure service which has been discontinued, the city may permanently shut off services until such time as tampering charges and or penalties are paid. The fees will be set in accordance with the current city fee schedule, which shall be amended by resolution. Tampering charges must be paid before services are reconnected to the property. In lieu of the tampering penalties, a reconnection charge for either service should apply equal to the cost of reconnecting the services.
2. The person or persons to whom water or electric meters are assigned by account shall be liable for said meters in the event that meters under the control of and/or assigned to said applicant are either unsealed or otherwise tampered with.
(Ord. 785-2009, § 7 (part), 2009)