[Adopted 1-15-1988 by Ord. No. 84 (Ch. 238, Art. III, of the 1992 Code)]
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated.
- Includes corporations, companies, associations, firms, partnerships, societies and joint-stock companies, as well as individuals.
- Includes more than one separate dwelling unit, including multi-dwelling-unit buildings, apartment dwelling units, and standard dwelling units as defined in § 425-2 of the Town of Bethany Beach Zoning Code. Each such dwelling unit shall, where practicable, as solely determined by the Town Manager, be equipped with its own separate water meter. Whether or not any such dwelling unit is equipped with its own separate water meter, all such dwelling units shall be liable for any and all such minimum rates and other charges as may be established by the Town, including impact fees, pursuant to the provisions of this article.[Amended 4-20-2007 by Ord. No. 425]
[Added 2-16-1990 by Ord. No. 240]
Where any land and/or building(s) abuts a street, alley or way in the Town of Bethany Beach in which there is a Town water main, all plumbing facilities on such land or in such building(s) shall be connected to the Town water system within 90 days of the date such Town water main is available for connection to such land and/or buildings. After such connection, such property shall immediately cease using any method, other than the Town water system, to obtain water.
No connection with a water main shall be made without a Town water permit. Application for a water permit shall be made, in writing, to the Town and shall contain an agreement by the applicant to abide by and accept all of the provisions of this article as conditions governing the use of the Town water supply. A fee established by the Town Council by resolution shall be paid at the time of submitting the application and prior to issuance of a water permit.
[Amended 2-16-2007 by Ord. No. 421]
All premises using the Town water supply shall be equipped with a water meter furnished by the Town. All water meters, materials necessary for connecting to a service line, meter pits, pit covers and readouts and other necessary appurtenances shall be furnished to the customer by the Town at a fee established by the Town Council by resolution. Installation of a water meter shall be done by a licensed plumber at the expense of the owner. Installation shall be in accordance with the Town specifications and approved by the Town.
After the date of this article, all water meters shall be installed in an easily accessible location at a point or near the point of junction of the Town water main and the owner’s property line.
Before any premises are occupied, a water meter shall be installed as herein required.
The installation of water meters in the service connection line on the property of the owner or on the property of any other party shall in no way vest title to the meter in the owner or owners of the property upon which said meter is installed.
The Town Manager or a person authorized by him or her shall read or cause to be read every water meter used in the Town at such times as are necessary for the proper billing of property owners.
Water meters, meter pits, meter pit lids and valve boxes must be accessible and in plain view at all times. Any alterations in structures or landscaping which would hinder the above shall be corrected at the homeowner's expense. If it is difficult to locate the water meter in the process of reading the meter, an estimated water bill will be issued to the owner and/or occupant of the property.
Water meters shall be taken out and tested at the written request of the property owner upon payment of a fee as established by the Town Council by resolution. If the inspection discloses that the water meter is not within 3% of being accurate, then it shall be repaired or replaced and the fee returned to the property owner.
Meter boxes (pits) shall be constructed as designated by the Town of Bethany Beach.
Meter pit risers shall not exceed six inches in height. Any alterations greater then six inches in height shall require the entire pit to raised, to the proper grade by a licensed plumber at the expense of the property owner.
At the Town’s reasonable discretion, the Town may require the replacement of any meter pit or related equipment (based on age, integrity or type of material), at the full expense of the property owner.
Hereinafter, the passage of this article, metallic curb stops, approved by the Town, shall be placed on every new or replacement service pipe and shall be located as near to the property line of the premises served as is practicable. Such boxes shall be so located that they are easily accessible and shall be protected from frost by a metallic or plastic lid approved by the Town. Curb stops shall be installed by the Town at the expense of the property owner.
Hereinafter the passage of this article, water service cutoff valves for new water services shall be located between the water meter and the house and shall be installed by a licensed plumber at the expense of the owner to be served.
All water service pipes (laterals) from the Town water main to the curb stop shall be installed and maintained by the Town. Installation of the lateral shall be undertaken at a charge established by the Town Council by resolution and shall be paid, along with all other charges, prior to the work. All house connections and service pipes from and including the curb stop and water meter and related appurtenances shall be installed by a licensed plumber at the expense of the property owner.
All repairs to service pipes, house connection pipes, curb stops and plumbing systems of buildings shall be made by and at the expense of the property owner. At its own discretion, the Town may, in the case of an emergency, cut off service and/or repair any service pipes, and, in such an event, the expense of such cutoff and repair work shall be repaid to the Town by the property owner.
No service or house connection pipes shall be installed unless they conform to the minimum specifications approved by the Town.
All service pipes from the curb stop to the premises served shall be a minimum of three-fourths inch in diameter of a material, approved by the Town, capable of withstanding a minimum pressure of 200 pounds per square inch (effective as of date), and shall be installed by a licensed plumber at the expense of the owner of the property to be served. Service pipes, connections to the Town water supply and water meters shall not be covered unless authorized by the Town Manager or his or her designee.
[Amended 2-16-2007 by Ord. No. 421]
No water service pipe shall be placed in the same trench or excavation with a drain or sewer pipe. Water service lines shall be horizontally separated by 10 feet from a sewer pipe.
All repairs to service pipes located on private property shall be made by a licensed plumber at the expense of the property owner.
All premises upon which any building has been constructed or may hereafter be constructed, including living units within such building, having a connection with any main or pipes which are now or may be hereafter constructed and used in connection with the Town water system, shall pay such rates as established by the Town Council by resolution. The effective date of the rate charges shall also be set by the Town Council by resolution.
[Amended 2-16-1990 by Ord. No. 240; 4-27-1995 by Ord. No. 343; 2-16-2007 by Ord. No. 421]
Water bills shall be dated and sent out twice a year, in spring and in fall, or at such times as may be set by the Town Council by resolution.
All water bills shall be sent to property owners, who shall be legally responsible for all water charges and fees. Water bills shall be payable to the Town at the Town Office. The Town Manager shall have the power to adjust water bills when, in his or her judgment, an error has been made in the fees or charges billed to the owner. If it is difficult to actually locate the water meter in the process of reading the meter, an estimated water bill will be issued to the owner and/or occupant of the property.
A water bill shall be delinquent if it is not paid within 45 days of the billing date. Water service shall be turned off by the Town when a bill is delinquent. Once water has been turned off, it shall not be turned on again until the owner pays to the Town a reconnection fee established by the Town Council by resolution and, in addition, pays all of the sums which are due and owing to the Town for water service and any other charges provided for in this article.
Service charges shall be added to all delinquent bills from the first day after the bill becomes delinquent until paid, at the rate of 5% per month or fraction thereof. All such unpaid amounts, including service charges, shall be added to the next annual tax bill of the property owner responsible therefore. The Town shall not accept payment for or receipt of any such tax bill unless the amount of the water bill so assessed against the property owner, with service charges thereon, is included in the amount tendered on the tax bill.
Charges for water shall be a lien upon the premises, pursuant to Delaware State Code (25 Del. C. Chapter 29) as amended, or any future corresponding provision of law. Such lien shall have preference and priority over all other such liens on real estate or upon improvements located on land under lease.
No water shall be resold or distributed by the recipient thereof from the Town supply to any premises other than that for which application has been made and the meter installed, except in cases of emergency and only as authorized by the Town Manager. Under no circumstances shall water be sold from the Town water supply other than by the Town.
Water service may be discontinued at the request of a property owner or owner's agent for a period of not less than one month and for such additional months as may be requested to the Town Manager or his or her designee. Upon receipt of the notice from the owner, the Town Manager or his or her designee shall read the owner's meter and discontinue the service. The fee for such request discontinuance shall be set by the Town Council by resolution.
Upon request of the owner or owner's agent for resumption of water service, the Town Manager or his or her designee shall read the meter and turn on water service. The fee for such requested resumption shall be set by the Town Council by resolution.
[Amended 2-16-1990 by Ord. No. 240; 2-18-1992 by Ord. No. 279; 2-17-2006 by Ord. No. 407; 2-16-2007 by Ord. No. 421]
It shall be unlawful for any person other than the Town Manager or a person authorized by him or her to turn on or turn off water from the Town water supply at the water meter, curb stop or valve located in the Town water system or to tamper with, alter or damage any part of the Town water system, including making connection to the water system, without permission of the Town. Any person, firm or corporation violating any provision of this section shall be fined. (See Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article I, Penalties.)
In cases of emergency, an owner's water supply may be turned off by the Town.
The Town may, from time to time, promulgate and enforce such rules and regulations and may execute such contracts as may be necessary, governing the use of the entire or any part of such water system, either within our outside its corporate boundaries.