Loganville to hike up reconnection rate for utility customers

The Loganville City Council will discuss and likely vote on a new reconnection fee policy for utility customers who fail to pay by the cutoff date. The proposed fee schedule would raise the standard reconnection fee to $50 for reconnection the same day if paid in full during business hours. If paid online after hours, it will remain at a $50 reconnection fee, but will be reconnected the following business day. If a customer has paid online after hours and wants a reconnection immediately, it will cost them a $125 reconnection fee. A receipt of full payment online must be shown in order to have this done. Currently the reconnection fee, irrespective of whether reconnected immediately after hours or the following business day, is $30. Anyone who pays during business hours is reconnected that same day. This policy does not apply to any resident who has a medical condition that requires acess to water al all times. A list of those customers is kept at City Hall. Anyone who qualifies can contact City Hall to have their name added to the list.

The new policy was discussed at the Loganville City Council Work Session on Monday and, at the request of Councilman Skip Baliles, it was decided to hold off on adding it to the consent agenda to give more time for discussion Thursday before the vote. Councilman Jay Boland expressed concern about the $125 fee for reconnection.

“It just seems high. If they haven’t paid it they are obviously having difficulty, so to then charge them $125…,” Boland said. City Manager Danny Roberts said it was costing the city – and therefore the city taxpayers – to not charge for the after hours reconnection.

“Our preference would be not to charge anybody, but at our overtime we pay two hours overtime which is $45 to $63 plus $5.63 for the vehicle,” Roberts said. “Walton and the City of Monroe just don’t reconnect after hours and Gwinnett County does, but they charge $125.”

There were 112 customers last month who had their water turned off for failing to pay their bill after the grace period of 10 days. Shutoff is always the 20th day of the month unless it falls on a Friday. A 10 percent penality is added to the bill for anyone who does not pay the bill by the due date, which is always the 10th of the month.

The September Loganville City Council meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 13, 2018 in Council Chambers of Loganville City Hall at 4303 Lawrenceville Road. The public is invited to attend.

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