A CHARTER ORDINANCE ESTABLISHING PROCEDURES FOR DISCONNECTION AND RECONNECTION OF DELINQUENT WATER, ELECTRIC, SEWER, AND SOLID WASTE (REFUSE) ACCOUNTS OF THE CITY OF MARION, KANSAS; PROVIDING FOR DETERMINATION OF SUCH ACCOUNTS AND FOR HEARING IF REQUESTED BY CONSUMER; PROVIDING FOR FEES TO CITY ON CONNECTION AND RECONNECTION OF SAID UTILITY SERVICES; REPEALING MARION CITY ORDINANCE NO. 1220; AND EXEMPTING SAID CITY FROM THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 14-569 OF KANSAS STATUTES ANNOTATED, AS AMENDED BY SENATE BILL NO. 328 OF 2004, AND PROVIDING SUBSTITUTE AND ADDITIONAL PROVISIONS ON THE SAME SUBJECT.
SECTION 1. The City of Marion, Kansas by virtue of the power vested in it by Article 12, Section 5 of the Constitution of the State of Kansas hereby elects to exempt itself and make inapplicable to it Section 14-569 of the Kansas Statutes Annotated, as amended by Senate Bill No. 328 of 2004 and amendments thereto.
SECTION 2. Pursuant to Article 12, Section 5 of the Constitution of the State of Kansas, the governing body hereby adopts the following language as substitute provisions for K.S.A. 12-4501:
BE IT ORDAINED BY THE GOVERNING BODY OF THE CITY OF MARION, KANSAS:
SECTION 1. DEFINITION. For purposes of this ordinance, utility services shall include water, electric, sewer, solid waste (refuse) and other utility services provided by the City.
SECTION 2. DELINQUENT ACCOUNTS. Unless otherwise provided, water, electric, sewer, refuse or other utility service shall be terminated for nonpayment of service fees or charges in accordance with Section 3 and 4.
SECTION 3. NOTICE: HEARING.
(1) All accounts and charges for water, electric, sewer and refuse service shall be due and payable at the City Offices on or before the 15th of the month following such service. If the amount is not paid when due, a penalty of ten (10) percent shall be added thereto.
(2) If a utility bill has not been paid on or before the due date as provided in this ordinance, a delinquency and termination notice shall be issued by the Utility Billing Department within five (5) days after the delinquency occurs and mailed to the customer at his or her last known address.
(3) The notice shall state:
(a) The amount due, plus delinquency charge;
(b) Notice that service will be terminated if the billing amount is not paid within seven (7) 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;
(c) Notice that the customer has the right to a hearing before the Utility Hearing Board;
(d) Notice that the request for a hearing must be in writing and filed with the City Clerk no later than the three (3) days prior to the date for termination of service.
(e) Upon receipt of a request for hearing the Hearing Officer shall advise the customer of the date, time and place of the hearing, which shall be held within three (3) working days following receipt of the request.
SECTION 4. SAME; FINDING. Following the hearing, if the hearing officer shall find that service should not be terminated, the notice of such finding shall be presented to the City’s Utility Billing Department. If the officer finds that service should be terminated, an order shall be issued terminating service five (5) 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 ten (10) days, for the termination of such service.
SECTION 5. UTILITY APPLICATION. At the time of making application for utility service, the property owner or customer shall make a written application and shall pay a connection fee in the amounts set by the governing body as set out below. Receipt thereof shall be issued to each such depositor. These fees shall be due from each applicant for city utilities to defray the cost of the City setting up the accounts therefore and for such costs as may be required to effect hookups, if necessary, and are nonrefundable. These charges shall be due, payable and collected at the time application is made for service.
(a) Water & Electric Service $75
(b) Water or Electric Service Only $50
(a) Water & Electric Service $75
(b) Water or Electric Service Only $50
SECTION 6. LANDLORD LIABILITY.
(1) Owners of premises served by utility service under this ordinance shall be liable for payment of the cost of any utility service account delinquency arising from service provided to such premises, regardless of whether the utility service was furnished upon the application and request of the owner, occupant, or the lessee of the premises. This provision shall also apply when the premises are leased by or through an agent or other representative of the owner.
(2) In the event a delinquency arises involving leased premises, the owner or owner’s agent shall be notified in writing of the delinquency of the lessee by first class regular mail within five (5) days after the billing to the lessee becomes delinquent. Notice shall be sufficient if mailed to the last known address of the owner or owner’s agent known to City personnel responsible for said mailing, after reasonable inquiry. If the delinquent billing, interest and penalty are not paid within seven (7) days of the mailing, the affected utility service may be discontinued and no further such service shall be furnished by the City to the premises until all billings for the utility service to said premises, interest, last payment charges and a reconnection charge, if applicable, is paid in full.
(3) In the event a delinquency arises involving any property in which more than one occupant has an interest or resides therein and service is discontinued, no further such service shall be furnished by the City to the premises until all billings for the utility service to said premises, interest, late payment charges and a reconnection charge, if applicable, is paid in full.
(4) Landlord may also request a hearing before the Utility Hearing Board regarding the application of this section. Such request shall be made in writing within 15 days of termination of utilities at a particular resident or business.
SECTION 7. LIABILITY OF PROPERTY OWNER; LIEN.
(1). Lessors of leased premises served by utility service furnished by the City shall be ultimately liable for payment of the cost of any utility service furnished by the City to such leased premises, whether the service is furnished upon the application and request of the lessor or the lessee of such premises.
(2) If utility service is furnished by the City to leased premises, upon the application and request of the lessee, then all billings for such service furnished shall be made to the lessee. However, if the cost of such service is not paid, as when they become payable, the lessor of the premises served shall be liable for the payment of such cost, plus all interest and penalties as provided by the laws of the City. The lessor shall be notified in writing by first class mail within 10 days after a billing becomes delinquent.
(3) If utility service is furnished to leased premises on the application and request of the lessor of the premises, then all billings for utilities furnished of such leased premises shall be made directly to the lessor, and the lessor shall be fully liable for the cost of service furnished.
(4) Such charges shall constitute a lien upon the real estate serviced, and shall be certified by the City Clerk to the County Clerk, to be placed on the tax roll for collection, subject to the same penalties and collected in like manner as other taxes collectible by law.
SECTION 8 RECONNECTION FEE. In the event any service be lawfully disconnected by the City as herein provided, consumer shall be required to pay in addition to the delinquent amount a reconnect fee in the amount of $50.00 provided the reconnect occurs during normal working hours of City employees. If the reconnect occurs during non-working hours and if City employee overtime pay is required the reconnect fee will be $70.00.
SECTION 9. TRANSFER OF UTILITIES. In the event a consumer requests that the City transfer services from one residential address to another, consumer shall be required to pay a transfer of utilities fee of $25.00.
SECTION 10. SEASONAL DISCONNECT & RECONNECT. In the event a consumer requests that the City disconnect services for seasonal purposes, consumer shall be required to pay a seasonal disconnect fee of $1 0.00 and a reconnect fee of $1 0.00 if services are reconnected.
SECTION 11. TAMPERING WITH SERVICE. Tampering with or stealing services from a municipal utility is unlawful and such utilities are protected by municipal ordinance and State Law.
SECTION 12. UTILITY HEARING BOARD. There is hereby created a “Utility Hearing Board” which shall consist of the City Utilities Superintendent or his designated appointee, an appointee of the City Clerk’s Office acting as billing clerk, and at least one additional local member of the community appointed at the discretion of the City Utilities Superintendent. Nothing in the section shall limit other appointees being named to the board as circumstances dictate.
SECTION 13. Marion City Ordinance No. 1220 is hereby revoked.