AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF TEKOA, WASHINGTON, repealing Ordinance No. 776 and Tekoa Municipal Code Chapter 2.20 and those ordinances or ordinance sections codified as part of Tekoa Municipal Code Chapter 2.20, and adopting Tekoa Municipal Code Chapter 2.22, establishing rules and regulations for municipal water service, and establishing procedures for fix fees for water service.
Section 1. Chapter 2.20 of the Tekoa Municipal Code, and all ordinances or part thereof which are codified under Tekoa Municipal Code Chapter 2.20 are hereby repealed. Section 2. Ordinance No. 776 is hereby repealed. Section 3. There is hereby adopted as Tekoa Municipal Code Chapter 2.22 the following:
2.22.010 - Definitions
2.22.020 - Purpose
2.22.030 - Applicability
2.22.040 - Inspection
2.22.050 - Unlawful Interruptions of Service
2.22.060 - Emergency Interruption of Service
2.22.070 - City not Liable for Damages
2.22.080 - Application for Service – Service restricted outside of City Limits
2.22.090 - Conditions Applicable to Water Service Connections
2.22.100 – Plumbing Specifications
2.22.110 – Service Connection Fee
2.22.120 – Water Rates
2.22.130 – Meter Reading and Billing Procedures
2.22.140 – Lien
2.22.150 – Disconnection Procedure
2.22.160 – Inoperative Water Meters
2.22.170 – Meter Ownership
2.22.180 – Meters – Exchange and Reinstallation
2.22.190 – Meter – Maintenance and Repair
2.22.200 – Meter Tests and Adjustment of Bill
2.22.210 – Surcharge
2.22.220 – Cross Connections
2.22.010 - Definitions: For purposes of this chapter, the following words and phrases shall have the following meanings:
“Customer” shall mean any person owning the premises to which water service is being furnished.
“Department” shall mean the City of Tekoa Water Department.
“Superintendent” shall refer to the Tekoa Water Superintendent, or his designated agent.
“Main” refers to a water line designated or used to serve more than one premise.
“Person” includes natural persons of either sex, and associations, partnerships, and corporations, whether acting by themselves or by a servant, agent, or employee.
“Premises” includes any separate and identifiable home, building, apartment house, condominium, mobile home, or other separate and identifiable structure. The term shall not be construed to include building or other structures adjacent to each other which share common walls or boundary lines, even though under the ownership of the same person.
“Service Line Connection” shall mean all piping and fittings from the water main to the property owner’s side of the water meter assembly.
“Clerk/Treasurer” shall mean the Clerk/Treasurer of the City of Tekoa.
2.22.020 –Purpose: The purpose of this chapter is to establish fees for service, and general rules and regulations for the service and extension of service from the water system of the City of Tekoa; and to promote the public health, safety, and general welfare of the users of the water system, in accordance with standards established by the City, County, State, and Federal governments.
2.22.030 – Applicability: The provision of this chapter shall apply to all water services and work provided by the department.
2.22.040 – Inspection: Authorized employees of the City, properly identified, shall have access, at reasonable hours of the day, to all parts of a premise or building to which water is supplied by the city, for the purpose of assuring conformity to these regulations, and for reading water meters.
Whenever the owner of any premise supplied by the Department restrains authorized City employees from making such necessary inspections, including the reading of water meters, water service may be refused or discontinued.
2.22.050 - Unlawful Acts Defined: Any person causing damage to any property belonging to the Department shall be liable to the Department for any and all damages resulting either directly or indirectly therefrom.
It shall be unlawful for any person to willfully disturb, break, deface, damage or trespass upon any property belonging to or connected with the water system of the City of Tekoa, in any manner whatsoever.
It shall be unlawful for any person, other than authorized employees of the Fire and Water Departments of the City, to operate fire hydrants and hose outlets, unless property arrangements have been made for payment thereof, and permission has been granted by the City Council.
2.22.060 – Emergency Interruption of Service: In case of emergency, or whenever the public health, safety, or the equitable distribution of water so demands, the City Council may authorize the Department to change, reduce or limit the time for, or temporarily discontinue the use of water. Water service may be temporarily interrupted for purposes of making repairs, extensions, or doing other necessary work.
Before so changing, reducing, limiting or interrupting the use of water, the Department shall notify, insofar as practicable, all water consumers affected.
The City shall not be responsible for any damage resulting from interruption, change or failure of the water supply system.
2.22.070 – City Not Liable for Damages: The City shall not be liable for damages nor will allowances be made for loss of production, sales or service, in case of water pressure variations, or in case the operation of the City’s source of water supply or means of distribution fails or is curtailed, suspended, interrupted, or interfered with, or for any cause reasonably beyond its control. Such pressure variations, failure, curtailment, suspension, interruptions or interference shall not be held to constitute a breach of contract on the part of the City, or in any way affect any liability for payment for water made available or for money due on or before the date of such occurrence.
2.22.080 – Applications for Service – Service Restricted Outside of City Limits: An application shall be made for all service connections, for the use of fire hydrants, and for work to be performed by the Department. Such applications shall be made on a form to be provided by the Tekoa Clerk/Treasurer. An application shall be accompanied by all fees or deposits required by this chapter and, when approved by the Superintendent, shall constitute an agreement whereby the applicant agrees to conform to the provisions of this chapter as now enacted, or as hereafter amended; provided, from and after February 1, 1997, no new or additional water service connections shall be accepted for water service outside of the corporate limits of the City of Tekoa; provided further, as a condition of receiving continued water service outside of the City of Tekoa on and after May 1, 2009, all residences receiving such service must also subscribe to the same, regular garbage collection and disposal service as required of residents within the City of Tekoa under the provisions of Tekoa Municipal Code Chapter 8.16. For the purposes of this section, the term “water service outside of the corporate limits” shall mean water service to any residence, building, faucet, valve, or other point of use that is outside of the corporate limits of the City.”
2.22.090 – Conditions Applicable to Water Service Connections:
A. All water service connections shall be metered.
B. Each served premises must have a separate connection to a main, unless otherwise approved by the Superintendent and water committee of the City Council, or when impossible or impractical.
C. Water service will not be provided to more than one premise through a single service connection, and separate applications are required for each such connection. When two premises are being served by a single service connection as of the effective date of this chapter, the City Council may at its discretion, either decline to furnish water until separate service is provided for each premises, or may continue to supply water service to all such premises from the same connection on the condition that one minimum monthly charge shall be paid by each Customer.
D. When the premises for which service is sought does not abut a main with sufficient pressure and capacity to provide the required flow at the property line, the application for service shall be rejected.
E. The furnishing of water by a Customer to premises other than that served by the customer’s service is prohibited.
F. A request for a change in the size of service connection shall be treated as a request for a new service installation.
G. All water service connections shall be made by the Water Department, unless otherwise approved by the City Council.
H. When buildings are replaced by new buildings, the existing water service connection shall not be used when the Superintendent and water committee of the City Council determine that such connections are not acceptable. In such an instance, the customer shall be required to install a new water service connection, in accordance with the terms of this chapter.
I. Financial responsibilities for the maintenance of city water lines between the city main and the water meter of the property line, whichever is closer to the main, shall be upon the City, except as otherwise provided in this chapter.
J. Financial responsibilities for the maintenance and installation of city water lines between private premises and the water meter or the property line, whichever is closer to the main, shall be upon the private property owner.
2.22.100 - Plumbing Specifications:
A. All persons installing fixtures or appliances to be supplied with water from the City water mains shall be subject to the requirements of the applicable plumbing codes and standards of the State of Washington, County of Whitman, and City of Tekoa.
B. The City may require any customer to install a pressure reducing valve, backflow preventative device, pressure relief valve, or similar device at any location where the Superintendent determines a need to protect the City’s facilities or interests.
2.22.110 - Service Connection Fee: A service connection deposit shall be paid by the Customer at the time application is made for a water service connection. The amount of the deposit shall be as fixed from time-to-time by resolution of the City Council. The deposit shall be paid at the time of application for the connection. Then, once the installation is completed, any additional sums due which may due a result of the installation shall be paid within thirty (30) days, and before water service is initiated. The existing main location shall be determined by the Superintendent and water committee of the City Council.
2.22.120 – Water Rates:
A. Each customer of the Tekoa water system who is supplied with water service within the City of Tekoa and outside the City of Tekoa shall pay minimum monthly rates as fixed from time-to-time by resolution of the City Council. These minimum monthly rates shall entitle a customer to receive up to 5,000 gallons of water per month. All customers shall pay an additional fee as fixed from time-to-time by resolution of the City Council for all water received in excess of 5,000 gallons per month.
B. The owner of any property to which water service is discontinued for any reason, but the service connection is retained, shall pay a monthly standby charge for the service connection in such amounts as fixed from time-to-time by resolution of the City Council. If the property owner requests the service connection to be removed or capped, upon payment of disconnection charge in such an amount as fixed from time-to-time by the City Council, the standby charge shall terminate. In such event, should the property ever be reconnected to the water system, all fees, charges, assessments and deposits applicable to a new water service connection shall apply.
2.22.130 – Meter Reading and Billing Procedures: All amounts due for water service shall be the obligation of, and shall be due and payable by, the owner of the premises supplied with water service. For the purposes of this section, the term “owner” shall mean the owner of record of the property as disclosed by the records of the Whitman County Auditor, or the taxpayer for the property as listed on the rolls of the Whitman County Assessor. There shall be a charge to each premises receiving water service. For multi-family dwellings, the charge shall be for each apartment or other unit served within a building, whether occupied or not. However, if the owner of the apartment is remodeling a unit, the owner can come before the City Council to request a fee waiver for that unit during the remodeling. Water meters shall be read at regular intervals monthly, March to October. Customers who read inside meters at their premises must provide the reading to the Clerk/Treasurer by the (25th) day of the month preceding the month to which the bill applies, or they will be assessed a late charge (listed in Fee Resolution) for that month. Water bills shall be rendered on a monthly basis. The minimum water charge shall be due and payable monthly in advance on the (15th) day of each month, and charges for water used in excess of the minimum are due and payable upon presentation and billing. Water bills not paid by 4:00 p.m. on or before the (25th) day of the month shall be considered delinquent and a late penalty will be levied (listed in Fee Resolution). If water bills, including any applicable penalties, are not paid on or before the (15th) day of said succeeding month, water service shall be subject to disconnection as provided in Section 2.22.150, below.
2.22.140 – Lien: All water rates, reconnection charges, and related penalties, shall be charged against the premises. Such lien may be enforced by discontinuing the water service to the premises as hereinafter provided until such time as the delinquent unpaid charges, fees, and penalties, together with an additional re-connection fee (listed in Fee Resolution), has been paid to the Clerk/Treasurer.
2.22.150 – Disconnection Procedure: Shut off notices will be mailed to customers who do not pay their bill by the end of the second month after the bill is due, notifying them that they have 10 days to pay their bill in full, or make arrangements with the Mayor for payment. If after 10 days, they have not paid their bill or made arrangements, their water will be shut off for non-payment
2.22.160 – Inoperative Water Meters: The Water Department will bill the customer for water consumed while the meter was inoperative. The owner will be charged the average overage amount during the same period of time, while the meter is inoperative, using a 3 month average from the previous year. The previous years’ 3 month average to include the previous month, the current month, and the following month.
2.22.170 – Meter Ownership: All water meters installed on water service connections by the department shall be and remain the property of the City and shall be removed only by the department.
2.22.180 – Meters – Exchange and Reinstallation: Whenever the owner of any premises desires to change or install a meter larger than 5/8” x ¾”, an application shall be made to the department, and upon approval, the exchange will be made at the expense of the owner.
Property owners shall be responsible for insulating or protecting meters and meter boxes against freezing from November 1 to March 1. All repair costs dues to freeze damage will be the responsibility of the property owner.
2.22.190 – Meter – Maintenance and Repair: The department shall maintain and repair all service meters and shall replace meters periodically, when necessary, if rendered unserviceable by ordinary use.
When replacement or repairs to any meter are made necessary by the willful act, neglect or carelessness of the owner or occupant of the premises served, all expenses of such replacement shall be borne by the owner of the premise.
2.22.200 – Meter Tests and Adjustment of Bill: Upon the request from a customer, based upon a complaint that the water bill for any period has been excessive, the department shall have the meter re-read.
Should the customer then request that the meter be tested for accuracy, the customer shall have the right to be present when such test is made. If the test discloses an error of more than three (3%) percent in favor of the City, a correct registering meter shall be installed at the expense of the City, and the Customer’s account shall be credited with the excess consumption.
2.22.210 – Cross Connections: Cross connections shall be regulated in accordance with Tekoa Municipal Code Chapter 3.95.
2.22.220 – Violation: Any person found to have committed a violation of this Chapter shall be deemed to have committed a civil infraction, and upon conviction therefore, shall be subject to monetary penalty as fixed from time-to-time by resolution of the City Council.”
Section 4. This ordinance shall be in full force and effect five days after it or a summary thereof, has been published in the official newspaper of the City of Tekoa as required by law.
PASSED by the City Council of the City of Tekoa at a regular meeting of the Council held on this 20th day of September, 2010.
APPROVED: __________________________________ John Jaeger, Mayor