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A. Delinquent Account:
1. When an account is a delinquent account, city, before termination, shall issue a written late notice to inform the account holder of the delinquent status. A late notice or reminder notice must include the following information:
a. A statement that the account is a delinquent account and should be paid promptly, and
b. A statement, together with the appropriate telephone numbers, that the account holder should communicate with the collection department, by calling the customer service office, if he/she has any question concerning the account, and
c. A statement of the delinquent account balance, using a term such as "delinquent account balance";
2. Where the account holder responds to a late notice or reminder notice, the customer service personnel shall investigate any disputed issue and shall attempt to resolve that issue by discussion. During this investigation and discussion no other action shall be taken to terminate the residential utility service if the account holder pays the undisputed portion of the account.
B. Reasons For Termination:
1. Residential utility service may be terminated for the following reasons:
a. Nonpayment of a delinquent account where the delinquent account balance is more than ten dollars ($10.00), or
b. Nonpayment of a security deposit where required, or
c. Failure to comply with the terms of a deferred payment agreement or a final order, or
d. Unauthorized use of or diversion of residential utility service or tampering with wires, pipes, meters, or other equipment owned by the utility, or
e. Subterfuge or deliberately furnishing false information for the purpose of obtaining utility service, or
f. Failure to provide access to meter during the regular route visit to the premises following proper notification and opportunity to make arrangements in accordance with subsection 13.04.040B2 of this chapter,
g. Failure to make good a dishonored check which was tendered for payment within forty eight (48) hours of notice, or
h. An unsafe condition that has been verified by the city building inspection division. Service will only be restored when the unsafe condition is remedied by the customer to the satisfaction of the city building inspection division.
2. The following shall be insufficient grounds for termination of service:
a. A delinquent account, accrued prior to the commencement of a divorce or separate maintenance action in the courts, in the name of a former spouse who was the principal wage earner, cannot be the basis for termination of the current account holder's service,
b. Cohabitation of a current account holder with a delinquent account holder who was previously terminated for nonpayment, unless the current and delinquent account holders also cohabited during the time the delinquent account holder received the utility service, whether such service was received at the current account holder's present address or another address,
c. Where the delinquent account balance is less than ten dollars ($10.00), unless no payment has been made for two (2) months,
d. Failure to pay any amount in bona fide dispute presently before the hearing officer,
e. Payment of delinquency for third party services billed by the city utility, unless prior approval is obtained from the hearing officer.
C. Restrictions Upon Termination During Serious Illness:
1. Residential water, sewer and electric utility service may not be terminated and will be restored if terminated where such termination will cause or aggravate a serious illness or infirmity of a person living in the residence. Utility service will be restored or continue for one month or less as provided for in subsection C2 of this section;
2. Upon receipt of a physician's statement on the physician's letterhead stationery, identifying the health infirmity or potential health hazard, the city utility will continue or restore residential utility service for the period set forth in the physician's statement or one month, whichever is less; provided, however, that the person whose health is threatened or illness aggravated petitions the hearing officer for an extension of time;
3. During the period of continued service, the account holder is liable for the cost of residential utility service. However, no action to terminate the service may be undertaken until expiration of the period of continued service.
D. Restrictions Upon Termination To Residences With Life Supporting Equipment: The city shall not terminate service to a residence in which the account holder or a resident is known to be using an iron lung, respirator, dialysis machine, or other life supporting equipment, without specific prior approval by a court of competent jurisdiction. Any account holder eligible for such protection can obtain it by filing a written notice with a doctor's written statement with the utility. Thereupon, city utility shall mark and identify all meter boxes, when applicable, at which such equipment is used.
E. Termination Without Notice: The city may terminate residential utility service without notice where, in its judgment, a clear emergency or serious health or safety hazard exists for so long as such condition exists, or where there is unauthorized use of or diversions of residential utility service or tampering with wires, pipes, meters, or other equipment owned by the utility. The utility shall immediately attempt to notify the customer of the termination and the reasons therefor.
F. Notice Of Proposed Termination:
1. At least ten (10) calendar days prior to a proposed termination of residential utility service, city shall give written notice of disconnection for nonpayment to the account holder. The ten (10) day time period is computed from the date the bill is postmarked. The notice shall be given first class mail or delivery to the premises and shall contain a summary of the following information:
a. A statement of the customer's rights and responsibilities under existing law,
b. The approved policy on termination,
c. The availability of deferred payment agreements and sources of possible alternative assistance including, but not limited to, local, state and federal energy assistance programs,
d. Informal and formal procedures to dispute bills and to appeal adverse decisions, including the hearing officer's address and telephone number,
e. Specific steps that may be taken by the customer to avoid termination (to be printed in a conspicuous fashion),
f. The date on which payment arrangements must be made to avoid termination;
2. At least forty eight (48) hours prior to the time when termination of service is scheduled, the city utility shall make good faith efforts to notify the account holder or an adult member of the household, by mail, by telephone or by a personal visit to the residence.
a. If the required notice is mailed to the account holder the mailing shall be by first class mail. The forty eight (48) hour time period shall commence at three o'clock (3:00) P.M. of the next business day following the day of mailing of the notice.
b. Personal notification, such as a telephone conversation with the termination party, or notification by first class mail is required and the mailed forty eight (48) hour notice can be the final notice prior to the termination. The mayor shall have the authority to order a moratorium on termination of electrical service during periods of extreme cold temperatures.
c. If termination of service is not accomplished within fifteen (15) days following the forty eight (48) hour notice, the utility will follow the above procedures for another forty eight (48) hour notice;
3. The city utility shall send duplicate copies of ten (10) day termination notices to a third party designated by the account holder and shall make reasonable efforts to personally contact the third party designated by the account holder before termination occurs, if the third party resides within its service area. The City utility shall inform its account holders of the third party notification procedure at the time of application for service and at least once each year;
4. For all residential premises where a person other than the occupant is the account holder and that fact is known, the City utility shall post a notice of proposed termination on the premises in a conspicuous place and shall make reasonable efforts to give actual notice to the occupants by personal visits or other appropriate means at least five (5) calendar days prior to the proposed termination. The posted notice shall contain the information specified in subsection F1 of this section. This notice provision applies to residential premises where: a) the account holder has requested termination, or b) the account holder has a delinquent bill. If nonpayment is the basis for the termination, the City utility shall also advise the tenants that they may continue to receive utility service for an additional thirty (30) days by paying the charges due for the thirty (30) day period just past.
G. Termination: Upon expiration of the notice of proposed termination, the City utility may terminate residential utility service. Except in cases of service diversion or for safety considerations, utility service shall not be disconnected between Thursday at four o'clock (4:00) P.M. and Monday at nine o'clock (9:00) A.M. or on legal holidays recognized by the State of Utah, or at any other time the City's business offices are not open for business.
H. Restrictions Upon Termination Practices: City shall not employ termination practices other than those set forth in this chapter. City shall have the right to employ or pursue all legal methods to ensure collection of obligations due it.
I. Current Limiter As A Substitute For Termination:
1. The City Power Department may install a current limiter as an alternative to terminating electric service for nonpayment of a delinquent account or for failure to comply with the terms of a deferred payment agreement or Hearing Officer order. All conditions precedent to the termination of electric service must be met prior to the installation of a current limiter;
2. If at the end of five (5) calendar days the account is still delinquent and no petition has been filed with the Hearing Officer, the electric service may be terminated in its entirety until the delinquent account is paid or a deferred payment agreement reached and all other fees are satisfied.
J. Liability: The City will accept no liability for damages to customer's property or facilities in the event discontinuance of service is required and the termination procedures herein set forth have been complied with. (Ord. 11-42: Ord. 94-20 § 1: Ord. 91-34 § 1: Prior Code § 10-55.6)