[HISTORY. Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Owasco 4-13-1988 by L.L. No. 6-1988. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Building construction and fire prevention — See Ch. 50.
Flood damage prevention — See Ch. 78.
Property maintenance — See Ch. 111.
Sewers — See Ch. 116.
Streets and sidewalks — See Ch. 122.
Subdivision of land — See Ch. 126.
Trailers and tourist camps — See Ch. 136.
Zoning — See Ch. 150.
This chapter shall be known as the "Water Use Code of the Town of Owasco."
The purpose of this chapter is to promote the general health, welfare and safety of the inhabitants of Owasco through regulation, supervision and control of the water system and supply of the Owasco Water District. It is hereby declared the policy of the Town Board of Owasco by means of this chapter to provide such regulation, supervision and control and to provide for the operation and maintenance of the Owasco Water District.
In interpreting and applying the provisions of this chapter, the following definitions shall prevail:
- Includes any structure or enclosure to which water is supplied, whether occupied or vacant.
- Any connection, either of a direct or of an indirect nature, between the piping system and the water supply.
- Includes all places to which water is supplied, whether occupied or vacant.
- WATER DEPARTMENT
- The person, group or department of the Town, appointed or created by the Owasco Town Board, having charge of the furnishing of water either within or without the Water District.
No person, building or premises shall apply for or receive water from the Owasco Water District except in accordance with the provisions of this chapter. The provisions of this chapter and any rules and regulations adopted hereunder shall be deemed a part of any contract for the furnishing of water, and any person applying for, receiving, accepting or paying for water service from the Owasco Water District and/or the Water Department shall be considered, as part of the consideration for receiving such service, as having agreed to be bound by said provisions and rules and regulations.
Any person who knowingly receives or knowingly permits premises owned or occupied by him to receive water from the Owasco Water District except in accordance with this chapter or said rules and regulations shall be guilty of a violation of this chapter, punishable as provided hereinafter.
Any person desiring to purchase or receive water from or to connect into the Owasco Water District or any of its mains or water transmission lines or for replacement and modification of an existing installation shall apply to the Water Department upon forms provided by the Water Department. Application shall be made by the owner of the premises or his agent authorized in writing.
For the purposes of inspection, installation, maintenance, repair, meter reading or turning on or shutting off water, authorized personnel of the Water Department shall have free and full access, at all reasonable times, to all parts of any premises supplied with water from the Owasco Water District or upon which application has been made to the Water Department or to which water is reasonably believed to be supplied. Filing of an application shall, in addition to the provisions of this section, be deemed consent to such access.
The installation and maintenance of private service lines, excluding the mains and lines of the Owasco Water District, shall be in accordance with the following provisions and specifications.
No private service line from a Water District pipe or main shall be installed, altered, replaced or used until the same has been inspected and approved by the Water Department.
No opening shall be made in any Town highway except with the consent and approval of the Town Superintendent of Highways upon such terms and conditions as he shall require, including the posting of a reasonable bond if, in his reasonable judgment, such bond is necessary. For this purpose, the Superintendent may prepare reasonable requirements for such openings to be filed with the Water Department.
[Amended 5-9-2013 by L.L. No. 4-2013]
All connections to or taps of water mains for water service shall be made by the Water Department. A tapping or connection fee(s) may be established and adjusted by resolution of the Town Board.
All private lines shall be installed, maintained, altered or replaced with Type K copper tubing which shall conform to ASTM Designation 888, latest revision, of the following widths and thicknesses:
All joints in Type K copper-tube service lines between the curb stop and meter shall be made with compression or flare fittings.
The service line shall be laid out not less than four feet below the established grade of the adjacent street or existing ground level, but, where it is impractical to meet the Department requirement by reason of existing conditions, the Water Department may, upon application therefor, grant a permit for some other method of installation.
All service lines shall be laid in a separate trench at least three feet distant horizontally from any other underground facility and in solid ground. The placing of water-service line in the same trench as that occupied by sewer pipe, gas pipe or other utility lateral connections will not be permitted except by special authorization of the Water Department in extraordinary cases, including where solid rock is encountered.
The Water Department shall designate the point at which the water main is to be tapped and also the position of the service-pipe connection at the tap. The Water Department shall make necessary excavations for all taps, which shall be at least four feet square and not less than six inches below the main.
No new tap shall be made to a water main to connect with a service line which is intended to replace an existing service line unless the existing service line is properly disconnected at its tap to the water main. The expense of such disconnection shall be borne by the applicant.
Where a service line is abandoned, the service line must be shut off at the tap and disconnected at the expense of the owner.
There shall be a separate and distinct tap for the service of each premises supplied with water. Multiple taps to any one premises may be installed upon application of the owner, at the discretion of the Water Department.
All outside service lines, building service pipes, outlets and fixtures shall be maintained in good order and repair and protected from frost leaks and breaks and must be promptly repaired if not in good order to prevent waste of water. If the owner fails to observe these requirements, the Water Department may shut off the water supply and assess the cost thereof against the real property affected, to be collected as part of the water rent.
All meters used to measure water purchased from the Water District shall be supplied by the Water District, and no meter shall be installed unless supplied by the Water District. Each meter shall be installed by the Water Department.
The Water Department will install and maintain meters and meter couplings. Meters shall be set as nearly as possible to the point of entry of the service-connection pipe to the building and shall be kept unobstructed and easily accessible to Water Department employees at all times. The Water Department, in its rules and regulations, may require a meter to be set in a pit or box other than the customary location of the meter, which pit or box is to be provided at the expense of the consumer and located near the front property line of the premises.
Permanent meter installation requiring a three-fourths-inch or larger size meter shall be provided at the consumer's expense. Meters of two inches or more shall provide a valved spur pipe on the building side of the meter for test purposes. The design of such special meter settings shall be submitted to the Water Department for approval before construction by the consumer is undertaken. The Water Department will test meters at regular intervals to determine their accuracy and will replace, at its expense, defective parts in improperly operating meters except where meters are damaged by frost, hot water or from external causes. The Water Department shall thereafter have complete control thereof. No meter may be removed without a written permit from the Water Department.
No person other than an employee of the Water Department shall interfere with or remove any water meter, sealing device or coupling from any meter installation after it has once been placed in service by the Water Department.
The Water Department shall determine the proper size of meter to be installed and shall have the right to change the meter at any time it is necessary in order to ensure its proper operation.
Any meter damaged by frost or by hot water or steam backing into the meter or by any external cause shall be repaired by the Water Department at the expense of the property owner, and the water service may be disconnected until such corrective action is taken to prevent a recurrence of the incidence which caused the damage.
The charge for such repairs shall be based on the cost of removing, repairing, testing and replacing said meter.
[Amended 5-9-2013 by L.L. No. 4-2013]
Consumers, upon request, may have the meters serving their premises tested by the Water Department in their presence or that of a duly authorized representative. If the meter so tested shall be found to register not more than 103% of the amount of water actually passing through it, the actual expense, including overhead, incurred by the Water Department in removing, testing and replacing the meter shall be paid by the consumer.
[Amended 8-11-2011 by L.L. No. 1-2011]
Employees of the Water Department, in the performance of their duties, shall be permitted to enter the premises of any consumer at any reasonable hour to remove, replace, repair or test the meter, to make a record of the quantity of water used, to inspect the premises to determine the manner of water use or to enforce the provisions of this chapter. If the Town is unable to access the premises to obtain a meter reading after one year, a shutoff notice will be sent to the property. In addition, there will be no monetary or usage credit for over estimates when the Town has been unable to obtain a meter reading.
Water service may be discontinued by the Town for refusal of reasonable access to the property for the purpose of reading, repairing, testing or removing meters or inspecting water piping or other fixtures.
No liability for shutting off water. Neither the Water Department nor the Town shall be liable for any damage which may result to any person or premises from shutting off the water from any main or service, for any purpose whatever, even in cases where no notice is given.
The schedule of charges and rates for water service shall be as adopted annually or at any other time as determined by resolution of the Town Board, except that, if no action is taken by the Board, the most recently adopted schedules shall continue in effect.
All water supplied shall be charged for on the basis of the amount registered on the meter or meters installed on the consumer's premises, with a minimum charge as established by the Town Board. Where two or more meters supply the same premises and consumer, the consumer, in addition to the fixed charges for all meters, shall be billed at the schedule of rates for a quantity of water equal to the sum of the readings on all meters on the premises.
The Water Department with the approval of the Town Board, shall determine the charges and rates in special cases to cover unusual conditions or types of service not contemplated in these rules and regulations or in the rates and charges set by the Town Board for regular service. No consumer will be allowed to supply water to other persons or premises and no owner or occupant shall use water from another premises unless specific permission has been obtained in each case from the Water Department The Department has the right to require, during a temporary period of emergency, that a consumer allow it to connect an adjacent premises to such consumer's piping, but in such case allowance will be made for any excess water registered on his meter.
Checks for payments of water bills and water charges shall be made payable to the Town of Owasco.
The Water Department upon the written request of a property owner, will mail the water bills to the tenant or lessee using the water, but the owner shall remain responsible for all charges provided for in this chapter, together with any penalties.
The Town Board may enter into a contract or contracts for the sale of water to users not within the Owasco Water District Rates for such use shall be specified in each contract, provided that such rates shall not be less than the rates established for users within the District. In fixing such rates, the Board may consider whether any such applicant is by the Owasco Water District as a property owner within said District. Any contract for such service outside the District shall require the party requesting such service to comply with the provisions of this chapter.
All water rents, penalties and interest thereon and all charges for tapping, connecting and disconnecting and any other charges provided by this chapter shall be a lien on the real property upon which the water is used, and such lien shall be prior to every other lien or claim except the lien of an existing tax.
The Town Clerk shall annually file with the Town Board and the Supervisor the amount of any such liens which have not been paid at the time and in the manner prescribed by the Town Board, with a description of the real property affected thereby, and the Supervisor and the Assessor shall include such amount in the annual tax levy and shall transmit such statements to the County Treasurer, who shall levy the same upon the real property in default.
If a consumer desires to discontinue the use of water for a temporary period, the Water Department shall be given at least 24 hours' notice, in writing, for turning off the water and similar notice for turning it on again. If the temporary discontinuance is during the winter months, the Water Department upon request, will shut off the service at the curb cock and remove and place the water meter in its storeroom and will reinstall the same upon proper notice when required.
If a consumer desires to discontinue the use of water due to permanent vacancy, the Water Department shall be given at least 24 hours' notice, in writing, whereupon it will, at the time required, shut off the service and will read and remove the meter for the consumer and will render a special bill for the fractional period.
A service connection for private fire-protection purposes may be secured from the Town upon application by the owner of the property involved. A drawing showing the proposed location of all valves, pipes, hydrants, sprinkler heads and other appurtenances to be installed shall be submitted with the application.
The Water Department will determine the necessity and advisability of installing any fire service connection in view of the size of the street main available, the existence of available fire hydrants and the possible effect on the main pipe system if such a service line were broken and open during a conflagration. Likewise, the Water Department will determine the proper size of each fire connection, which in no case shall be larger than eight inches in diameter. The cost of installation of such a service, including an approved type of check valve with meter on a bypass located in a pit or vault, if required, shall be borne entirely by the applicant. An annual ready-to-serve charge, based on the size of the service connection and payable in advance, shall be made as provided by the Town Board.
A fire service connection, except as provided in this section, will be subject to the same rules and regulations as apply to regular service connections. No connection shall be made at any time between the fire-protection system and the regular water supply on the premises or any other supply, regardless of source, unless specifically approved by the Water Department. A fire service connection is exclusively for fire-protection purposes. The use of water from this service for any other purpose whatever is prohibited. Any violation of these provisions shall be sufficient cause for discontinuing such service until reasonable assurance is given that offense will not be repeated.
All cross-connections shall be made in accordance with the requirements of the Town of Owasco Water Department as provided for in § 144-44.
Where either hand excavation or excavating machines are used by contractors or others in digging trenches for sewers, drains, gas mains and conduits or in connection with any other underground excavation work, all water mains shall be maintained in position at the expense of such person or contractors. Contractors or others working in the public street must ascertain for themselves the location of all water service connection pipes. Where they are removed, cut or damaged in the construction or repair of a sewer, drain, gas main or conduit or in connection with any other underground excavation work, such person or contractor must, at his expense, cause them to be replaced or repaired in accordance with the requirements of or directly by the Water Department promptly, and he must at once notify the Water Department of the interruption of service and must reimburse the Department for any expense to it in providing temporary service and in restoring regular service.
The Water Department will operate, maintain and, where necessary, replace all existing mains and appurtenances, fire hydrants and other facilities within the territory of any street or any easement that is under the jurisdiction of the Water District, except that repair or damage resulting from collision or any other external cause shall be paid for by the person causing such damage.
No unauthorized person shall open or close any valve, hydrant, or curb cock or interfere or meddle with any hydrant, valve, pipe or main, curb cock, meter or other fixture or appurtenance connected with the water system of the Town. The Water Department shall control all mains, taps, gate valves, street service connections, curb stopcocks, curb and gate valve boxes and meters and may, whenever such facilities are operated or interfered with in any way in violation of these rules and regulations, discontinue the water service to the premises involved, which action shall be in addition to the penalties provided for by this chapter. No person shall, except with a permit from the Water Department, allow contractors, masons or other unauthorized persons to take water from his premises or operate any valve connected with the distribution system.
Fire hydrants are, except under special circumstances and with permission of the Water Department, for the sole use of the Owasco Fire District for furnishing fire-protection services. Tampering with any fire hydrant or the unauthorized use of water therefrom is a violation of this chapter. In cases where no other supply is available, permission may be granted by the Water Department for temporary use of the hydrant.
If a property owner or other party desires a change in the location of a fire hydrant he shall bear all costs of such change. Any change in location of a fire hydrant must be approved and the work done by the Water Department.
The Town and the Water District make no guaranty as to the amount or consistency of pressure or volume of the water it furnishes and will not, under any circumstances, be responsible for any loss or damage from any excess, deficiency or variation in the pressure, volume or supply of water or for loss or damage caused by water escaping from or obstructions in a service line due to frost or any other cause or for any loss or damage as a result of water escaping from laterals, fixtures, appliances or pipes owned by consumers.
The Water Department shall have the right to shut off the water in the mains temporarily to make repairs, alterations or additions to the plant or system, but the District will not be responsible for damages resulting directly or indirectly from any interruption of the water supply.
When it becomes necessary to shut off the water from any section of the water system, the Water Department will endeavor to give notice to as many of the consumers affected thereby as time will permit and will, so far as practicable, use its best efforts to prevent inconvenience and damage, but failure to give such notice shall not make the Town or District responsible or liable for any damages that may result either directly or indirectly from shutting off the water.
In cases where boilers or other appliances in a premises depend upon the pressure in the service line to keep them supplied with water, the owner or occupant shall place suitable safety devices to guard against the possibility of collapse or explosion when the water supply is interrupted. Likewise, such owner or occupant shall protect water-cooled compressors for refrigeration systems by means of high-pressure safety cut-out devices and shall provide means for the prevention of transmission or water hammer or noise of operation of any valve or appliance through his piping to any adjacent premises. Failure of the owner or occupant to provide such safety devices shall in no way make the Town responsible for any resulting damages.
The Water Department shall have the right to curtail the amount of water supplied in the event that its supply becomes limited. The Water Department, in case of a shortage of water, may limit or prohibit the use of water for sprinkling of lawns or gardens or for any purpose not deemed necessary for the maintenance of public health. Where water is wastefully or negligently used on a consumer's premises seriously affecting the general service, the Water Department may discontinue the service of such premises if conditions are not corrected within 24 hours after giving such customer written notice, or, if an emergency exists, it may discontinue service without notice.
Before any road in the Water District, on a subdivision or otherwise, shall be accepted by the Town Board as a Town highway, the person offering such road to the Town shall install in or along such road water pipes or mains sufficient to provide water service for any and all dwellings or structures proposed to be erected along such road. In lieu thereof and in addition to any other deposit or security required for the acceptance of such road, the Town Board may require a deposit or security for the installation of such pipes or mains.
For the purpose of carrying out the purposes and provisions of this chapter, the Water Department may prepare rules and regulations not inconsistent with the specific provisions hereof, which shall be complied with by all applicants for water service and users thereof. Such rules and regulations and subsequent changes and amendments to rules and regulations shall be approved by the Town Board and shall be filed with the Town Clerk and shall be available for the guidance of all applicants and users. Any person objecting to the provisions of any such rules and regulations may file such objection with the Town Board, which shall determine the effect thereon.
In addition to any other violations set forth in this chapter or any statute of the State of New York, it shall be a violation for any person to cause damage to any water main, hydrant, meter or metering equipment, storage tower, standpipe or any facility or equipment used in providing water service by the Owasco Water Department or for any person to turn on, without the permission of the Owasco Town Board or a representative of the Owasco Water Department, any hydrant which is a part of the water system operated by the Owasco Water Department.
Any person who violates any provision of this chapter which is declared to be an offense or violation shall be guilty of a violation and shall be punished by a fine not exceeding $250 or by imprisonment not to exceed 15 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
Where it is provided herein that a violation of this chapter or any part or section thereof shall result in a forfeiture or the imposition of a penalty, the Town Board may maintain an action or proceeding in any court of competent jurisdiction to collect such forfeiture or penalty and to compel compliance with this chapter by injunction or in any other legal manner.