Skip to code content (skip section selection)
A. Billing Cycle: All City utilities shall use a billing cycle which has an interval between regular periodic billing statements of twenty eight (28) to thirty two (32) days. This section applies to permanent continuous service customers, not to seasonal customers.
B. Estimated Billing:
1. Electric Service: If estimated billings are to be used, the utility shall endeavor to make an actual power meter reading at least once in a two (2) month period and render a bill for the appropriate charge determined from that reading;
2. Accessibility: If a meter reader is unable to gain access to a meter for the purpose of making an actual reading, the utility shall take appropriate additional measures in an effort to obtain an actual meter reading. These measures shall include, but are not limited to, scheduling of a meter reading at other than normal business hours, making an appointment for meter reading, or providing a prepaid postal card with a notice of instruction upon which an account holder may record a meter reading. If after two (2) regular route visits access has not been achieved, the utility will notify the customer that he/she must make arrangements to have the meter read as a condition of continuing service. If meter readings cannot be made due to weather conditions, the utility will make every effort to obtain an actual reading as soon as conditions permit;
3. Water Service: Water meter readings shall be estimated for the billings between November 1 and March 31. Account holder shall be billed for the winter period (November 1 to April 30) based on actual use from the prior year winter period at the same location, minus one hundred (100) cubic feet. Any difference between the prior year's usage and actual usage will be charged or credited with the April billing.
C. Periodic Billing Statement:
1. City shall mail or deliver an accurate bill to the account holder, for each billing cycle at the end of which there is an outstanding credit or debit balance for current service, a statement which the account holder may retain, setting forth each of the following disclosures to the extent applicable:
a. The outstanding balance in the account at the beginning of the current billing cycle using a term such as "previous balance", and
b. The amount of all charges debited to the account during the current billing cycle using a term such as "current service", and
c. The amount of all payments made to the account during the current billing cycle using a term such as "payments received", and
d. The amount of all credits other than payments to the account during the current billing cycle using a term such as "credits", and
e. The amount of all late payment charges debited to the account during the current billing cycle using a term such as "late charge", and
f. A listing of the closing date of the current billing cycle and the outstanding balance in the account on that date using a term such as "amount due", and
g. A listing of the statement due date by which payment of the new balance must be made to avoid assessment of a late charge, and
h. A statement that a late charge, expressed as an annual percentage rate and a periodic rate, may be assessed against the account for late payment, and
i. The following notice: "If you have any questions about this bill, please call Murray City Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m." The bills shall contain the telephone number of the appropriate department.
2. The above requirements shall be implemented when the City's current supply of printed bill forms is exhausted.
D. Late Payment Charge:
1. After twenty five (25) days from the billing statement date, a late payment charge of 1.5 percent shall be assessed against any unpaid delinquent balance. A customer may be granted a waiver of the late payment charge if:
a. The customer makes a written request with the Director of Finance and Administration or designee within thirty (30) days from assessment of the late payment charge;
b. The customer has incurred no late payment charges on their account in the twelve (12) consecutive months prior to the assessment of the late payment charge the customer wants waived;
c. The Director of Finance and Administration or designee has determined that good cause exists to waive the late payment charge.
2. No other charge, whether described as a finance charge, service charge, discount, or net/gross charge, may be applied to any account for failure to pay an outstanding bill by the statement due date. This section does not apply to reconnection charges, return check service charges, costs of court or attorney fees.
E. Statement Due Date: An account holder shall have twenty (20) days from the date the current bill was prepared to pay the new balance, which date shall be the statement due date.
F. Collection Fee: If a payment is made after a collector or other City employee has been dispatched to disconnect the service of a customer, a collection fee of twenty dollars ($20.00) shall be added to customer's account.
G. Disconnect And Reconnect Fees: Electric power and water/sewer service:
1. Disconnect Fee: Disconnect request by owner, tenant, or landlord residential account holder due to temporary vacancy: Thirty dollars ($30.00) per service.
2. Reconnect Fee: All fees referenced below are per service:
a. Reconnect fee to reinstate residential service after nonpayment disconnection:
(1) Between eight o'clock (8:00) A.M. and three o'clock (3:00) P.M. on business days: Thirty dollars ($30.00).
(2) Between three o'clock (3:00) P.M. and eight o'clock (8:00) P.M. on weekdays, and from ten o'clock (10:00) A.M. and two o'clock (2:00) P.M. on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays recognized by City: Sixty five dollars ($65.00).
b. Reconnect fee after voluntary disconnect at request by owner, tenant, or landlord residential account holder, due to temporary vacancy: Thirty dollars ($30.00).
c. No reconnect fee is charged following a voluntary disconnect if the vacancy exceeds three hundred sixty five (365) days.
d. If a power line had to be cut to shut off power and a line crew and service truck need to reconnect services due to a power meter being inaccessible, a fee of two hundred fifty dollars ($250.00) will be charged.
3. Temporary Vacancy: A vacancy of less than three hundred sixty five (365) days is deemed to be a temporary vacancy.
4. Charge For Meter Tampering: A charge of seventy five dollars ($75.00) may be imposed if it is determined that a customer, without approval from the City, tampered with a meter requiring reconnection. The customer shall also be responsible for the cost of any damaged parts resulting from such action. The reconnection charge of seventy five dollars ($75.00) is in addition to any criminal or civil penalties that may be imposed as a result of the unauthorized tampering.
H. Fees Paid: Fees must be actually paid to receive the requested disconnect or reconnect service.
I. Separate Services: Electric power and water/sewer services are separate utility services; the disconnect and reconnect fees imposed by this chapter are applicable to each utility.
J. Disputed Bill:
1. Account holders may only dispute billing errors, the accuracy of meter readings or the accuracy of the meter. These disputes include, but are not limited to:
a. Failure to credit accounts,
b. Payments made but not shown,
c. Failure to properly read meters,
d. Due date of bills;
2. Technical errors such as misspellings, inaccurate dates that do not affect the bill, etc., are not subject to dispute. Mere inability to pay does not render a bill in dispute;
3. In disputing any part of a periodic billing statement, an account holder shall first attempt to resolve the issue by discussion with the City's customer service personnel;
4. Where an account holder has proceeded pursuant to this section, the customer service personnel shall investigate any disputed issue and shall attempt to resolve that issue by discussion;
6. While an account holder is proceeding with either informal or formal review of a dispute, no termination of service shall be permitted provided any amounts not disputed are paid when due.
K. Rate To Be Charged Upon Failure Of Meter: When, for any reason, the electric meter fails to register, operate or otherwise does not function properly, the account shall be charged as follows:
1. If the account holder has had twelve (12) months' continuous service prior to the failure of the electric meter, the account shall be charged the amount as for the same billing period of the month of the previous year. The amount charged shall be based on the average daily consumption multiplied by the number of days in the current billing period; or
2. If the account holder has not had continuous service of twelve (12) months, the amount charged to the account shall be based on the average daily consumption for the history of the account multiplied by the number of days in the current billing period. (Ord. 19-05: Ord. 15-10: Ord. 11-42: Ord. 11-13: Ord. 03-08 §§ 2, 3: Ord. 02-35 § 2: Ord. 02-13 § 7: Ord. 94-20 § 1: Ord. 93-35 § 2: Ord. 91-34 § 1: Prior Code § 10-55.4)