[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of Montgomery Borough as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 8-26-1968 by Ord. No. 97 (Ch. XVIII, Part 1, of the 1996 Code of Ordinances)]
Definitions. As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- The Montgomery Water and Sewer Authority.
- The Borough of Montgomery.
- The owner/applicant for water service at one household or
business and who enters into an agreement therefor.[Amended 12-14-2004 by Ord. No. 2004-6]
- The Authority-owned or leased piping appurtenances, in or along public highways and streets, or along privately owned right-of-way, used for the transmission or distribution of water to its customer.
- WATER RENTAL UNIT
- Each family dwelling unit or the equivalent which is served
by the Borough water system:[Added by Ord. No. 1982-1]
- (1) A single-family dwelling: one unit.
- (2) Each family apartment or business suite in a multiple dwelling or office building: one unit.
- (3) Each half of a double house: one unit.
- (4) Each restaurant, club, bar, grill, service station, food market and garage: one unit.
- (5) Each retail store, beauty parlor, barber shop or business or professional office not herein otherwise classified: one unit.
- (6) Each industrial establishment, school or nursing and convalescent home: one unit.
- Property owner, whether the property is owner or tenant occupied.[Added 12-14-2004 by Ord. No. 2004-6]
Written application by owner or tenant.
Water service connections will be made upon written application signed at the Borough Office by the property owner, or his properly authorized agent. Water service will be furnished, upon written application signed by the property owner. Blank forms for all applications will be furnished by the Borough, and all applications must receive the approval of the Borough before connection is made, or either class of service furnished.
No application for service will be accepted by the Borough until the applicant has paid, or made satisfactory arrangements to pay, all arrears and charges due by the applicant at any premises now or hereafter occupied by him.
The accepted application shall constitute a contract between the Borough and the applicant, obliging the applicant to pay to the Borough its rates, as established from time to time, and to comply with its rules and regulations.
Applications for service connections will be accepted, subject to there being existing mains in streets or rights-of-way abutting the premises to be served.
When a prospective customer has made application for a new service, or has applied for the reinstatement of an existing service, it is assumed that the piping and fixtures on the applicant's premises are in good condition, and the Borough and the Authority will not be liable in any event, for any accident, breaks, or leakage arising in any way in connection with the supply of water or failure to supply same, or the freezing of water pipes or fixtures of the customer, nor for any damage to the property which may result from the usage of water supplied to the premises.
A new application must be made and approved by the Borough upon any change in ownership of the property, or in the service, as described in the application, and the Borough shall have the right, upon 10 days' written notice mailed to the property owner, to discontinue the water supply until such new application has been made and approved. Whether or not the property is owner occupied or leased to a tenant, the owner of the property is solely responsible for payment of any water bills.
[Amended 12-14-2004 by Ord. No. 2004-6]
Property owners desiring an abatement from water bills for vacancies shall report same, in writing, to the Borough Office. All vacancies shall date from the day the same is received. When a property is reported vacant, an allowance will be made for the period of vacancy, but not less than 1/2 a quarter. The Borough reserves the right to discontinue service to any vacant property.
Industrial and commercial establishments making application for water service in addition to making written application for such services shall furnish a detailed description of the type and size of buildings, the nature of the business to be conducted in each structure, and the number and type of fixtures to be served. Such applicants shall also furnish the Borough four copies of plans showing:
Renewal of service. Service will be renewed under proper application when the conditions under which such service was discontinued are corrected and upon payment of the applicable charge.
Owner and tenant to sign. Where a water connection has been previously installed and service is desired, a proper application shall be signed by the owner.
[Amended 12-14-2004 by Ord. No. 2004-6]
General. Deposits may be required from customers taking services for a period less than 30 days, in an amount equal to the estimated gross bill for such temporary period, plus the cost of making and discontinuing such service. Deposits may be required from any other customer who becomes habitually delinquent, provided that in no instance will deposits be required in excess of the estimated gross bill for any single billing period plus one month with a minimum of $22.
Deposit not to apply to current bill. Any customer having paid a deposit shall pay bills for water service as rendered, in accordance with the rules of the Borough, and the deposit shall not be considered as payment on account of a bill during the time the customer is receiving service.
Return of deposits. Deposits shall be returned to the depositor when he shall have paid undisputed bills for service for a period of 12 consecutive months; and any customer having secured the return of a deposit will not be required to make a new deposit, unless the service has been discontinued and the customer's credit standing impaired through failure to comply with the Borough's rules.
The payment of any disputed bill, within the meaning of these rules, shall be payment of the bill with or without penalty, within 30 days following the period for which the bill was rendered, or payment within 30 days following presentation of the bill, or the payment of any contested bill, payment of which is withheld beyond the period herein mentioned if the dispute is terminated substantially in favor of the customer, and if payment is made by the customer within 10 days thereafter.
No interest will be paid on deposits.
[Amended 12-12-1995 by Ord. No. 1995-21]
By customers. All agreements covering water service shall continue in force unless and until receipt of reasonable notice in writing of a desire to terminate the contract. Water service to any premises will be terminated upon the written order of the applicant, without in any way affecting the existing agreement for service.
Service may be discontinued for any of the following reasons:
Misrepresentation in application.
Willful waste of water through improper or imperfect pipes, fixtures, or otherwise.
Use of water for any other property or purpose than that described in the application.
Molesting any service pipe, meter, curb stop cock or seals, or any other appliance of the Borough.
Neglecting to make or renew deposits, or for nonpayment of any charge accruing under the application.
Refusal of reasonable access to the property for purposes of inspecting or for reading, caring for, or removing meters.
Making, or refusing to sever, any cross-connection between a pipe or fixture carrying water furnished by the Borough, and a pipe or fixture carrying water from any other source.
Violation of any rules of the Borough.
For the violation of Subsection B(1)(e) of this section, the Borough may assess a penalty of $25.
If any person trespasses upon the reservoir to its injury, or injures any of the works or pipes or anything pertaining to the waterworks of the Borough, or willfully or negligently wastes water from any plug or hydrant, or turns off or on water at any stop cock or valve, each person so offending shall be guilty of an offense and, for every such offense, shall be sentenced to pay a fine of not less than $50 nor more than $600 and costs of prosecution and, in default of payment of fine and costs, to undergo imprisonment for not more than 30 days.
No fire hydrant shall be opened or operated for any purpose without permission, in writing, from the Borough under the penalty prescribed by law, except in case of fire. Fire companies desiring to test hydrants or fire-fighting equipment will first obtain permission from the Borough.
Turn off. The customer shall not turn the water on or off at any corporation stop, curb stop, or meter valve; or disconnect or remove the meter, or permits its disconnection or removal, without the written consent of the Borough.
Due to emergency. As necessity may arise in the event of breakdown, emergency, or for any other unavoidable cause, the Borough shall have the right to cut off the water supply temporarily, in order to make necessary repairs, connections, etc., but the Borough will use all reasonable and practical measures to notify the customer of such discontinuance of service. In such case, the Borough shall not be liable for any damage or inconvenience experienced by the customer, or any claim against it at any time for interruption in service, lessening of the supply, inadequate pressure, poor quality of water, or for any causes beyond its control. When the supply of water is to be temporarily interrupted, notice will be given, when practicable, to all customers affected by the temporary interruption of service stating the probable duration of the interruption, and also the purpose of the interruption.
Reserve supply. The Borough shall have the right to reserve a sufficient supply of water at all times in storage, to provide for fire and other emergencies, or may restrict or regulate the quantity of water used by the customer in case of scarcity, or whenever the public welfare may so require.
No responsibility. It is agreed by the parties receiving public fire service, private fire service, or any other service that the Borough does not assume any liability as insurer of property or person, and that the Borough does not guarantee any special service, pressure, capacity, or facility, other than is permitted by the ordinary and changing operating conditions of the Borough, as the same exists from day to day. It is agreed by the parties receiving service that the Borough shall be free and exempt from any and all claims for injury to any persons or property by reason of fire, water, failure to supply water pressure or capacity.
[Amended 5-4-1982 by Ord. No. 1982-4]
Place of payment. Bills are payable at any office or paying agency as designated by the Borough.
Bills rendered and due.
[Amended 12-14-2004 by Ord. No. 2004-6]
Regular meters and industrial consumers' meters will be read monthly and billed monthly. In case of fire service, bills will be rendered on or about the first day of every month. All bills are due and payable on presentation and delivery.
All customers connected to the water system will be billed and shall pay monthly the minimum charge or estimated charge, whichever is applicable, plus any excess amount due over the minimum allowance.
Delinquent bills. If a bill remains unpaid for 30 days after being classed as delinquent, service may be discontinued at any time after having given not less than 10 days' written notice by mail to the property owner, and a lien may be filed against the property, and further provided, that if the premises are tenant occupied, the landlord must be given at least 37 days' written notice by mail of intent to discontinue water service, and the tenant must be given at least 30 days' written notice by mail of intent to discontinue water service.
[Amended 12-14-2004 by Ord. No. 2004-6]
Abatement. No abatement on meter bills will be made for leaks or for water wasted by damaged fixtures.
[Amended 5-24-1971 by Ord. No. 1971-10]
Turn-on charge. When water has been turned off from any premises because of violation of the Borough's rules, or for nonpayment of a bill, a charge of $20, payable in advance, will be made for again turning on the water. No charge will be made for turning on the water for an original connection.
[Amended 12-14-2004 by Ord. No. 2004-6]
Reasonable access. The properly identified authorized agents of the Authority and Borough shall have the right of access to the premises served, at all reasonable hours, for the purposes of reading meters, examining fixtures and pipes, observing the manner of using water, and for any other purpose which is proper and necessary.
Prohibited acts. No plumber, owner, tenant or other unauthorized person shall turn the water on or off at any corporation stop, curb stop, or meter valve, or disconnect or remove the meter without the written consent of the Borough.
No oral agreements. No agent or employee of the Borough has authorization to bind it to any promise, agreement or representation not provided for in these rules.
In all contracts for general or special water service, it is expressly understood and agreed that no claims will be made against the Borough or Authority for damage to life or property, by reason of the breaking of any service pipe, water fixture, meter or appliance within the customer's premises, unless caused by the negligence of the Borough or Authority or their employees, nor for any damage done due to the failure of the water supply for any cause beyond the Borough's and the Authority's control.
All consumers having boilers upon their premises, depending upon the pressure of the water in the Borough's and Authority's pipes to keep them supplied, are cautioned against danger of collapse, and all such damage must be borne exclusively by the consumer.
No water will be furnished to any premises where any possibility exists of the mingling of the water furnished by the Borough with water from any other source. Nor will the Borough permit its mains or service pipes to be connected in any way to any piping, tank, vat or other apparatus containing liquids, chemical, or any other matter which may flow back into the Borough's service pipes or mains, and consequently endanger the water supply.
Changing of rules and regulations. The Borough reserves the right to change or amend, from time to time, these rules and regulations, and the rates for water service.
Service lines. The Borough will make connections to its mains, furnish, install and maintain all service lines to and including curb stop and box, which will be placed inside the curbline; or alternately to a meter pit which shall be located inside the property line; all of which service lines shall remain the sole property of the Authority, and shall not be trespassed on or interfered with in any respect. The applicant shall pay a connection charge of $65 for each connection installed by the Borough. In addition to the charge stated above, there shall also be paid to the Borough the cost of any permit fee and any additional charge for restoration of sidewalk or street paving.
Size and kind of service line. The Borough reserves the right to determine the size and kind of service line from the main to the curb stop, or meter pit, and from the curb stop or meter pit to the property to be served. Type K copper, flared underground type, shall be used throughout for services up to and including three inches in diameter. For larger services, cast iron pipe meeting AWWA standards for Class 150 water pipe shall be used. The pipe from the curb stop, or meter pit, to the property shall be furnished, installed and maintained by the owner of the property, shall be laid in a straight line at right angles to the curbline, within the building limits of structures to be served, and shall be at least four feet below the surface of the ground, when final grading of the property has been completed. If a customer wishes a connection of a larger size service line from the main to the curb stop, or meter pit, than the Borough considers necessary, he shall pay the difference in cost between the larger size line and the size deemed necessary by the Borough.
No service pipe shall be laid in the same trench with gas pipe, drain or sewer pipe, or any other facility of any public service company, nor within three feet of any open excavation, vault, cesspool, or septic tank; nor shall the location be in conflict with any sidewalk or driveway running at right angles to the front of the building.
The Borough will make all necessary taps to the main and furnish curb stop and curb box for all new service lines and all replacement service lines as well as the service line between the main and the curb box. The property owner, at his expense, will furnish, install and maintain new and replacement service lines from the Borough curb box to and including the owner's premises. All work shall be done under the supervision of an authorized representative of the Borough.
Maintenance by customer. All connections, service lines and fixtures furnished by the customer shall be maintained by him in good order, and all valves, meters and appliances furnished and owned by the Authority or Borough, and on the property of the customer, shall be protected properly and cared for by the customer. All leaks in the service or any other pipe or fixture in or upon the premises supplied must be repaired immediately by the owner or occupant of the premises. The customer shall be responsible for notifying the Borough of the party engaged by said customer to do any maintenance work on the customer's service line, prior to work being commenced, and said party shall not backfill any trench until the work has been inspected and approved by the Borough's representative. Any work not acceptable shall be immediately removed and replaced by work which is acceptable.
Borough and authority not responsible. The Borough and the Authority shall, in no event, be responsible for maintaining any portion of the service line owned by the customer, or for damage done by water escaping therefrom; or from lines or fixtures on the customer's property; and the customer shall at all times comply with applicable regulations with respect thereto, and make changes therein, required by reason of changes of grade, relocation of mains, or otherwise.
Property supplied by single service line. A service line from the curb stop, or meter pit, to a property shall not supply more than one property, as described below, but any such property, upon proper application of the owner, may be supplied by two or more meters, each of which, for billing purposes, shall be considered as being one customer account, and provided that the supply to each such meter has an individual control at or near the curb. viz:
A dwelling house, either detached, or one side of a double house, or a house in a row of houses; provided, that a garage, a conservatory and similar structures accessory to the life of one family shall be considered as a portion of the dwelling.
An industrial, or commercial, or manufacturing establishment.
A building separated from adjacent buildings by a party wall or party walls, and comprising apartments or stores or offices or any combination thereof.
A detached building comprising apartments or stores or offices, or any combination thereof.
Single service line with two or more customers. Where two or more customers are now supplied through a single service line, any violation of the rules of the Borough, with respect to either or any of said customers, shall be deemed a violation as to all, and unless said violation is corrected after reasonable notice, the Borough may take such action as can be taken for a single customer, except that such action will not be taken until an innocent customer, who has not violated the Borough's rules, has been given a reasonable opportunity to attach his pipe to a separately controlled service connection.
Special application. A supply of water for building or other special purposes, except on a lot or premises already supplied with a metered water connection, must be specially applied for. All applications for water for building purposes, when water is not supplied through a meter at meter rates, must be signed by the owner, or his duly authorized agent, and shall be interpreted to mean that the water is to be used from a builder's hydrant, and shall not be introduced into any of the house fixtures.
[Amended 7-15-1974 by Ord. No. 1974-3]
Furnished by Borough. All water meters will be furnished and installed by the Borough, and will remain the property of, and under the control of, the Borough or Authority and will be accessible at all times.
All water services shall be metered. Each water service from curb stop, or meter pit, to a property shall be metered. The Borough reserves the right to determine the size and location of the meter.
Location. After the applicant has provided space for the meter, which will be readily accessible, and will provide proper protection for the meter, and has had the plumbing arranged to receive the meter, at a convenient point approved by the Borough, and so positioned as to meter and control the entire supply, the Borough will have the meter set. In cases where it is not practical to place the meter within a building, a brick, concrete or other approved meter box or pit, fitted with a suitable and approved type of iron cover, shall be built inside the property line by the customer. The size and dimensions of the pit or box shall be approved by the Borough, provide adequate access to the meter, and permit its ready installation or removal.
Valves required. A wheel-handled round-way stop cock or gate valve shall be placed by the customer on the service line directly ahead of the meter, and a stop and waste cock or valve on the outlet side of the meter. A suitable and approved check valve should be placed by the customer, between the stop and waste cock or valve and the meter. When a check valve is installed, a safety valve should be inserted at some convenient point in the house piping, to relieve excess pressure due to heating water.
Responsibility for damage.
Meters will be maintained by the Borough so far as ordinary wear and tear are concerned; but damage resulting from freezing, hot water, or external causes due to the negligence of the customer, shall be paid for by the customer.
Upon notice from property owner that a vacancy exists, the property owner must notify the Borough when the property will be open, so that the water meter can be removed. Failure to do so will result in the property owner being entirely responsible for damage to the water meter by freezing or otherwise.
Consumers must at all times properly protect meters from frost or other damage, and shall be held responsible for repairs to meters necessitated by their negligence. The cost of any such repairs made by the Borough will be billed to the consumers and, upon failure to pay, water service shall be discontinued.
Charge for reinstallation of water meters. The customer shall pay a charge for the reinstallation or changing of a meter when removed because of damage in any way due to the negligence of the customer based on the current purchase price of meter plus $5 for service charge.
Minimum charge. Each meter is installed subject to a fixed minimum quarterly charge in accordance with the adopted rate schedule, for which certain quantities of water will be furnished without additional charge. Such minimum shall be nonabatable for nonusers of water, and noncumulative against subsequent consumption. In the case of fractional period bills, covering less than a quarter, minimum charges and allowances shall be prorated.
Borough to be notified when meter not working. The customer shall immediately notify the Borough of injury to or non-working of the meter, as soon as known by the customer.
Registration conclusive. The quantity recorded by the meter shall be conclusive on both the customer and the Borough, except when the meter has been found to be registering inaccurately, or has ceased to register. In such cases, the quantity may be determined by the average registration of the meter when in proper working order.
Disputed account. In the event of a disputed account involving the accuracy of a meter, such meter will be tested upon the request of the customer, in conformity with the provisions of these rules and regulations. If when so tested, the meter is found to have an error in registration of 4% or more, the bills will be increased or decreased correspondingly.
Request test. When a meter is removed, after installation, at the request of the customer, for testing, the following rules shall apply:
The Borough shall, upon a written request of a customer, and if he so desires, in his presence or that of his authorized representative, make a test of the accuracy of his meter. When a customer desires, either personally or through a representative, to witness the testing of a meter, he may require the meter to be sealed in his presence before removal which seal shall not be broken until the test is made in his presence. If the meter so tested shall be found to be accurate within the limits herein specified, a fee determined from the schedule indicated below shall be paid to the Borough by the customer requiring such test, but if not so found, then the cost thereof shall be borne by the Borough. When making such request, the customer shall agree to the basis of payment herein specified.
A report of such test shall be made to the customer and a complete record of such test shall be kept by the Borough. The amount of the fee shall be $3 for each water service meter having an outlet not exceeding one inch. For other water service meters having an outlet not exceeding two inches, the test fee shall be $7.50 per meter, and for meters larger than two inches, the charge shall be $4 per inch diameter.
Automatic devices and hydrants. For automatic sprinklers or other automatic fire service devices located inside a building or buildings, a separate service line will be required, to be used exclusively for fire service. At the option of the customer, fire hydrants located outside of buildings may be connected to the fire service line. Each such separate service line shall be metered and shall be subject to the charges shown in the rate schedule. The Borough reserves the right to refuse approval for an application for automatic fire service where, in the judgment of the Borough, such service is not practical.
Ownership and location. Meters for private fire services will be furnished and installed by the Borough. Meters will be set in an approved type of brick or concrete masonry meter vaults, adequately drained, located on the premises of the customer. The meter vaults are to be constructed and maintained at the expense of the customer.
Private unmetered fire service. When, in the judgment of the Borough, it is practical, private unmetered fire service lines may be permitted to be installed at the expense of the owner. In such cases, the applicant shall pay to the Borough the estimated cost of the fire hydrant installation prior to installation, and the appropriate adjusting payment shall be made by the owner, or by the Borough after the actual costs have been determined. In no event, however, will unmetered fire service be introduced into a building.
[Adopted 6-13-1995 by Ord. No. 1995-22 (Ch. XVIII, Part 2, of the 1996 Code of Ordinances)]
The Borough does hereby establish, impose and charge effective July 1, 1995, the rates for water services furnished by the Borough in the amounts and in accordance with the rate schedule attached hereto and marked Exhibit A:
All ordinances, previously adopted by this governing body, which are inconsistent with § 455-10 above are hereby repealed; however, such repealer shall apply only to that section or part of the ordinance which is inconsistent with § 455-10 above, and all other parts of said ordinance shall remain in full force and effect.