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(A) Purpose. The purpose of this section is to provide a basis for town utilities to adjust high bills caused by underground leaks in water lines or equipment on users' property that users could not reasonably have known with normal diligence, as approved by I.C. 8-1.5-3.5-3, and allowed pursuant to I.C. 36-9-23-25, and to relieve possible financial hardship on residents and businesses caused by no fault of their own.
(B) Definitions. For purposes of this section the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.
UNUSUALLY LARGE BILL. A residential water bill that reflects monthly water usage, in whatever units measured, that is at least 200% of the customer's average monthly usage over the preceding 12 months, or of the previous full billing period, if no history exists.
UTILITY. Either the water or sewer/wastewater utility, owned and operated by the town.
(C) Threshold considerations. Leak adjustments to water and sewer/wastewater bills will be considered when all of the following threshold conditions have been met:
(1) Water use volume is 200% of previous 12 months average usage history, or the previous full billing period, if no history exists.
(2) A town utility employee verifies the leak, and the customer requesting the adjustment provides written documentation in the form of a bill with a detailed statement of repairs from a licensed plumber, or a signed affidavit by the costumer requesting the adjustment that states the leak has been repaired.
(3) The customer requesting the adjustment must submit a Request for Water/Sewer Leak Adjustment Form in writing, no later than 30 days after the repair work has been performed.
(4) The account in question must not be delinquent, excepting therefrom the month in which the leak has caused the delinquency or unusually high bill.
(5) The customer requesting the adjustment has not received an adjustment within the last 12 months.
(6) Car washes do not receive a discount on monthly sewer charges.
(7) The Town Council shall disallow requests for adjustment when the water leak is due to lack of proper maintenance or negligence by the customer requesting the adjustment, in the sole and absolute discretion of the Town Council.
(D) Water leak adjustments. The Town Council may adjust a water and sewer bill resulting from a leak, provided those criteria as set forth in division (C) above have been followed, as follows:
(1) If water leaking does not go directly into the town's sewer system, the Town Council may reduce the water and sewer/wastewater bill by one-third and bill for the remaining gallons.
(2) If water leaking does enter the town's sewer system, the water flowing through the meter shall be reduced by one-third and billed. The sewer/wastewater bill shall be based upon the adjusted water billing.
(Ord. 10 of 2018, passed 11-12-2018)