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(A) The town shall endeavor to assure compliance with the requirements of these regulations by conference and persuasion. If such efforts, over a reasonable period of time, are futile, the town shall take formal action as provided hereafter.
(B) In any case involving a person who is receiving water and/or sewer service from the municipal water system, and where the Public Utilities Director, after consulting with the Town Manager, finds that such person has failed to comply with any of these regulations, the procedure for enforcement shall be as follows.
(1) The Public Utilities Director shall give notice to such person by certified mail, return receipt requested, or by hand delivery by a Town Police Department officer, stating the specifics of the failure of compliance and requiring that the person remedy the failure within 72 hours.
(2) The Public Utilities Director may thereupon, without further notice, cause the water and/or sewer service from the municipal system to be discontinued for such person.
(3) In any case where water and/or sewer service is discontinued by the town for enforcement purposes, the restoration of such service shall be conditioned on full compliance by such person and payment of any expense incurred in the enforcement proceeding and in the restoration of service.
(4) The town may, at its discretion, continue or restore service in a case of failure of compliance on condition that such person furnish a bond or other security, with terms as specified by the town, and to hold harmless the town from any loss or expense that it may incur as a result of such noncompliance or any future noncompliance.
(C) In any case where the Public Utilities Director determines that the health or safety of the public is threatened by the actions of a consumer, water and/or sewer service shall be immediately terminated to that consumer. The Public Utilities Director shall then notify the consumer in person along with written notification by the Utilities Director or by certified mail, return receipt requested, or by hand delivery by a Town Police Department officer, of the reason for the termination of service, and the corrective measures necessary prior to the resumption of service. In no case shall the town or its representatives be held liable for any damages resulting from such a termination of service.
(D) In any case involving a person who fails to comply with any of these regulations, but who is not receiving water and/or sewer service from the municipal system, the Public Utilities Director shall give notice to such person by certified mail, return receipt requested, stating the specifics of the failure of compliance and requiring that the person promptly remedy the failure. At the same time, the Public Utilities Director, in consultation with the Town Manager, shall report the facts of such case, in writing, to the Town Council, and to such other government agencies as may have jurisdiction and power to take appropriate enforcement action.
(E) The town reserves the right to terminate water and/or sewer service without notice for the following reasons:
(1) To prevent fraud or abuse;
(2) Consumer’s failure to pay bills and fees as required by this regulation;
(3) Emergency repairs;
(4) Insufficiency of supply or capacity due to circumstances beyond the town’s control;
(5) Legal processes;
(6) Direction of higher public authorities;
(7) Strike, riot, fire, flood, storm, accident or other unavoidable cause;
(8) Discovery of a cross-connection between a private or non-potable source and the town water system; and
(9) Consumer’s willful disregard of town’s rules.
(F) If any person(s) alters, tampers with or bypasses the town’s water service or meter(s) in a manner that causes such meter(s) to inaccurately measure and register the water consumed or which would cause the water to be diverted from the recording apparatus of the meter(s), or who tampers with any water service which has been disconnected by the Water Department for any reason, then said meter(s) shall be immediately removed and water service to said property or premises shall be halted. Service to said property or premises shall not be reinstated until a required administrative fee as stated in the town’s fee schedule has been paid in addition to any damages done to said meter(s). Nothing in this division (F) shall be construed to prevent the town from pursuing criminal or civil actions against any person(s) who alters, tampers with or attempts to bypass a water meter in accordance with the provisions of G.S. § 14-151.1.
(G) In cases of wanton and willful damage to either the water or sewer system, the town shall commence criminal proceedings under the appropriate state law. The town may, in addition to prosecution by law, permanently refuse service to any consumer who tampers with a meter or other measuring device, or who wantonly or willfully illegally discharges to the sewer system.
(H) The provisions of this section shall apply to all users of the town water and/or sewer system, whether within or outside of the town limits.
(I) In any case involving the use of the town sewerage system, the town shall have the right to collect the costs of treatment for the wastewater discharged by the user to the town sewerage system, including any fines levied by the Division of Water Quality or its successors. There shall also be an administrative fee as set in the town’s fee schedule.
(J) It is unlawful under the provisions of this chapter for any user or consumer that has had their water service disconnected for cause to connect to another water source. Connections made with hoses and other temporary devices shall be removed and confiscated by the Utility Department when discovered.
(Ord. passed 5-3-2011; Ord. passed 9-11-2014) Penalty, see § 10.99