CHAPTER XV. UTILITIESCHAPTER XV. UTILITIES\ARTICLE 1. GENERAL PROVISIONS

For purposes of this article utility services shall include water, electrical, sewer, solid waste (refuse) and other utility services provided by the city.

(Code 1998)

(a)   Unless otherwise provided, water, electric, sewer, solid waste (refuse) or other utility service shall be terminated for nonpayment of service fees or charges in accordance with sections 15-102:104.

(b)   Collections Policy.

(1)   General Collections

(A)  After the City Clerk’s Office has made 3 attempts to collect an outstanding debt, the amount owed will be collected using an alternative method.

(B)  The City Clerk’s Office shall be authorized to use whichever collection method is deemed most effective, appropriate, and legal based on the circumstances of that account.

(C)  Post-dated checks cannot be accepted under any circumstances.

(2)   Payment Agreements

(A)  Payment agreements may be completed and filed in the City Clerk’s office after the due date of the bill; no payment agreements may be made after 5 PM on the business day preceding the shut-off date.

(B)  All payment agreements must be fulfilled by the 5th business day of the month following the original due date.

(C)  No more than three (3) payment agreements will be accepted and valid in a 12-month period and may not be consecutive.

(D)  If a payment agreement is not fulfilled, the utility service will be discontinued, and regular discontinuation rules will apply.

(3)   Service Discontinuations

(A)  Regular “shut-off” day for non-payment will be scheduled for the 25th of each month unless on a weekend.  Disconnections for unfulfilled payment agreements and outstanding insufficient fund checks may occur on any regular business day.

(B)  There will not be any reconnection of services during weekends, holidays, or after normal business hours.

(C)  A reconnection fee will be collected at the time of reconnection of services to re-establish service.

(4)   Insufficient Fund Checks

(A)  When the City Clerk’s office receives notification of an insufficient fund check, a returned check fee will be applied to the customer’s account.  A letter will be sent allowing the customer 7 days to pay, by cash or money order, the amount of the insufficient fund check and the returned check fee of $25.00 plus any applicable bank charge.  A copy of this policy will be included with the letter sent to the customer.

(B)  If the outstanding insufficient fund check has not been settled and fees paid by the date designated in the letter, utility service will be discontinued and regular discontinuation rules will apply.

(C)  If two insufficient fund checks have been received in a 12-month period, the customer will be placed on a “Bad Check List” and will be on a cash or money order basis only.

(D)  After 12-months of consecutive on-time payments, a customer may be removed from the “Bad Check List.”

(E)   Any customer on the “Bad Check List” who attempts to make payment with a check, will have the check returned to them with a copy of this policy and the utility account will be treated as if no payment attempt had been made.

(F)   Any non-sufficient fund check will create the addition of a 10% late payment fee on that month’s billing.

(Code 1998; Ord. 610; Code 2014)

(a)   If a utility bill has not been paid on or before the due date as provided in this chapter, a delinquency and termination notice shall be issued by the city clerk within five days after the delinquency occurs and mailed to the customer at his or her last known address.  A copy also shall be mailed to the occupant of the premises if the occupant and the customer are not the same person.

(b)   The notice shall state:

(1)   The amount due, plus delinquency charge;

(2)   Notice that service will be terminated if the amount due is not paid within 10 days from the date of the notice unless the date on the notice to pay the charges due shall be on a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday, in which event such notice will give the consumer until the close of the next business day in which to pay the charges;

(3)   Notice that the customer has the right to a hearing before the designated hearing officer;

(4)   Notice that the request for a hearing must be in writing and filed with the city clerk no later than three days prior to the date for termination of service.

(c)   Upon receipt of a request for hearing, the city clerk shall advise the customer of the date, time and place of the hearing which shall be held within three working days following receipt of the request.

(Code 1998)

Following the hearing, if the hearing officer shall find that service should not be terminated, then notice of such finding shall be presented to the city clerk.  If the officer finds that service should be terminated, an order shall be issued terminating service five days after the date of the order.  The customer shall be notified either in person or by mailing a letter to his or her last known address by certified mail, return receipt requested.  However, if the order is made at the hearing in the presence of the customer, then no further notice need be given.  The hearing officer has a right, for good cause, to grant an extension, not to exceed 10 days, for the termination of such service.

(Code 1998)

(a)   Each new customer making application for utility service shall make a cash deposit to the city in the amount as specified in subsection (b), the deposits to serve as a guaranty for the payment of service thereafter furnished to the customer’s premises.

(b)   The amount of the deposit required shall be fixed by the city clerk and shall at all times be reasonable and shall be based upon the value of the estimated maximum service rendered for a 60 day period.

(c)   In the event that utility service shall be disconnected or discontinued for failure to pay any bill due the city for such utility, such cash deposit shall be applied as a credit against all amount due from the customer to the city, and if there shall remain any surplus of such deposit, the same shall be returned to the customer.

(d)   Deposits collected pursuant to this section shall be governed by the provisions of K.S.A. 12-822 as amended.

(Ord. 588, Sec. 1; Code 1998)

Reserved for Future Use.

A petty cash fund in the amount of $2,000 is established for the use of the city utilities department, for the purpose of paying postage, freight, temporary labor, and other emergency expenses, including refund of deposits made to secure payment of accounts.

(Code 1998)

The petty cash fund shall be deposited in the regular depository bank of the city and paid out on the order of the city clerk by check which shall state clearly the purpose for which issued.

(Code 1998)

Whenever the petty cash fund becomes low or depleted, the city clerk shall prepare vouchers covering expenses as have been paid from the petty cash fund and shall submit such vouchers together with the paid checks to the governing body for review and allowance of the amounts from the regular funds of the utilities.  Warrants issued therefor shall be payable to the petty cash fund and shall be deposited therein to restore said petty cash fund to its original amount.

(Code 1998)