Chapter 13.10


13.10.010    Purpose of provisions.

13.10.020    Application for service – Responsibility.

13.10.030    Deposits.

13.10.040    Payment of bills.

13.10.050    Discontinuing service.

13.10.055    Property owner responsibility for service.

13.10.060    Transfer of service to a new address.

13.10.070    Utility charges as lien.

13.10.080    Collection of delinquent charges – City may bring action.

13.10.010 Purpose of provisions.

The purpose of this chapter is to establish provisions for the application for service; deposit requirements; payment and collection of bills; discontinuance of service; and transfer of service to a new address for garbage and refuse collection service, water service and sewer service. (Ord. 434 § 7, 1997)

13.10.020 Application for service – Responsibility.

All consumers who are required to pay their own garbage, water, and sewer (hereinafter “utility service”) bills shall complete an application for service. The application form will be provided by the city. Before service is provided, the applicant must provide all information requested, show proper identification, sign the application and pay any applicable deposits. (Ord. 434 § 7, 1997)

13.10.030 Deposits.

A. Applicants for utility service will be required to establish credit before receiving such service. Credit will be deemed established if the applicant meets one of the following conditions:

1. Makes a cash deposit in an amount equal to the estimated average city wide periodic bill for each type of service. There are four types of service: Class A service consists of water, sewer, garbage, and green waste; Class B service consists water, garbage, and green waste; Class C service consists of sewer, garbage, and green waste; Class D service consists of garbage and green waste only. Such deposits shall be adjusted periodically by resolution of the city council;

2. Has been a user of the city utility service for 12 consecutive months within the previous 18 months and during such time has paid all bills without delinquency;

3. Provide the city with a letter of credit reference from another utility company showing an excellent payment record for at least 12 consecutive months prior to the date of requested service.

B. If a service is discontinued for nonpayment, the city may apply any deposits on file as necessary to liquidate the account and require that the customer post a new deposit in an amount twice the original deposit.

C. After a cash deposit has stood unimpaired for 12 months, such deposit shall be credited to the depositor’s account. Upon closing an account, the balance of any remaining deposit, after the closing bill for service has been paid, shall be returned to the depositor. (Ord. 434 § 7, 1997)

13.10.040 Payment of bills.

A. All utility services are billed in arrears. Bills for utility service shall be rendered on a bimonthly basis and are due and payable seven days after the issuance date of the bill. They shall be considered delinquent if not paid by that date.

B. Any account which is not paid within 30 days of the delinquent date shall be subject to a late fee. The late fee will be 10 percent of the amount due or $5.00, whichever is greater. Any nonresidential account not paid in full within the five days shall receive a notice of disconnect on their door and be disconnected. If sewer service is discontinued, water service will be locked off. Any residential account not paid in full within 60 days of the delinquent date shall receive a notice of disconnect on their door and be disconnected. A disconnect/reconnect fee shall be imposed on the consumer at that time, whether or not their service is physically disconnected. Additionally, flat rate service may be required to install a water meter as a condition of reconnecting to the system. If the service is for garbage only, the garbage service shall be discontinued and all containers retrieved until full payment is made. If a customer receives service at more than one location and the bill for service at any one location is not paid within the time provided for payment, service at all locations may be discontinued. Residential water service disconnection shall follow the policy on discontinuation of residential water service established by resolution.

C. When a service is discontinued due to nonpayment, service shall not be resumed until all charges and penalties are paid. Charges and penalties which are not paid may become a lien on the property. Termination of service to a residential dwelling for nonpayment shall not be effected while an investigation of a customer dispute or complaint is pending or in progress by the city. Termination shall not be effected on any Saturday, Sunday, legal holiday, or at any time during which the business offices of the city are not open to the public. (Ord. 581 § 3 (Exh. A), 2020; Ord. 434 § 7, 1997)

13.10.050 Discontinuing service.

A. There are certain charges which are mandatory; therefore, a property owner’s service will not be completely terminated unless the property is sold or a renter applies for service at that address. The owner may discontinue garbage service if the premises are unoccupied. To discontinue sewer charges, the water must be locked off. A customer requesting water to be locked off will be charged a fee for this service.

B. When a renter notifies the city that they are moving, service will automatically be put back into the owner’s name. Service shall remain in the property owner’s name until such time as a new renter has applied for service and paid any applicable deposit. (Ord. 434 § 7, 1997)

13.10.055 Property owner responsibility for service.

A. Except as prohibited by Public Utilities Code Section 10009.6, the owner of a property with multiple utility service connections or accounts shall apply for all utility service at the property and shall be deemed the consumer or customer as set forth in this chapter.

B. Pursuant to Public Utilities Code Section 10009.6, this section shall not apply to city-owned or operated utilities providing service to residential properties leased by the property owner to a tenant, excluding master-metered properties. In those cases, the tenant shall apply for service in his or her own name. In the event both city-owned or operated utilities and city-contracted utilities provide service to a property, the exemption set forth in this subsection shall only apply to city-owned or operated utility service. All other service shall be subject to subsection A of this section. (Ord. 536 § 4, 2012)

13.10.060 Transfer of service to a new address.

To transfer service to a new address, a customer must sign a new application for service, pay any outstanding balance at the present address, and post a new deposit (if applicable). A customer’s service may be discontinued if the closing bill for service furnished at a previous location is not paid within 30 days of transfer. (Ord. 434 § 7, 1997)

13.10.070 Utility charges as lien.

Every charge levied by or pursuant to this chapter to a customer who is the owner of the property receiving the benefit of utility service is made a lien on the property, and any steps authorized by law may be taken by the city to enforce payment of the lien. (Ord. 434 § 7, 1997)

13.10.080 Collection of delinquent charges – City may bring action.

As an alternative to any of the other procedures provided in this chapter for or given by law, the city may bring an action against the owner, occupant or lessee of the premises to whom the utility service was rendered for the collection of the amount of the delinquent charges and all penalties and costs of collection including a reasonable attorney’s fee. (Ord. 434 § 7, 1997)