Increased Surf City Water and Sewer Charges Approved

Feb 20, 2019
Photo by: Ryan Morrill

Following a public hearing that drew no comments despite a small crowd at the back of the room, the Surf City Borough Council last week adopted a measure setting a fee schedule for water and sewer charges.

Fees are going up by 8.6 percent, or $50, under Ordinance 2019-01. The new annual sewer rental charge for a private single-family home is $340, according to the measure. Duplex owners will pay $680 and a three-unit structure faces a $1,020 charge, under the measure. For a dwelling with four units, the cost is $1,360. A single-family home with two to five rental rooms is $680.

A dwelling with six or more rental rooms and all rooming houses will pay the commercial rate, according to the measure. All commercial establishments and schools will be based on the quarterly minimum usages at the rate of $340. Any overage above that will be charged at the rate of $3.83 per 1,000 gallons, the measure reads. Churches will also be at the rate of $340.

The ordinance also covers a schedule of fees for turning off the water. During normal working hours, a $100 fee will be assessed to any property needing to have water turn off, according to the measure. Individuals requiring turn-off service must provide notice of at least 48 hours to the borough. The $100 fee is due at the time the water is turned off, the ordinance reads.

“If the turn-off and turn-on occurs before the borough’s truck leaves the scene, there shall be only a fee of $100,” according to the measure. “If the borough’s truck must return at a later time, there shall be two $100 fees.”

Additionally, water meters are also accounted for under the ordinance. Residential water usage is not metered, but the fee is based according to the service size and the annual charge associated with that service. For a three-quarter-inch service, the cost is $290; an inch service fee is $580; 1 1/4 inch is $936, under the ordinance. The fee for a 1½-inch service the fee is $1,100 and $1,380 for a 2-inch service.

“Any lot with a residential structure located thereon shall be required to be connected to an operational water and sewer main,” according to the ordinance. “Said structure may only be disconnected when the construction official requires proof of such disconnect for the purpose of performing construction. For this such reason a building permit must be obtained and active within months of performing such disconnect. Utilities may not be disconnected for the purpose of not paying a utility invoice.”

Commercial water use is metered, according to the ordinance. A minimum fee of $290 will be assessed to a quarterly minimum of 15,000 gallons. That number is doubled, $580, for 30,000 minimum quarterly gallons. For a minimum usage of 50,000 gallons, the fee is $936. Fees for 60,000 gallon minimum and 75,000 gallon minimum are $1,100 and $1,380, respectively, according to the measure.

A $4 charge per 1,000 gallons will be assessed for all overages, the ordinance reads. A $100 charge will be assessed for each turn-on and turn-off of the water supply at the tap during the normal business hours. The rate for schools is $4 per 1,000 gallons, according to the ordinance.

For every emergency call, either requested or furnished by the borough’s water department personnel during their normal off-duty hours, is $300.

The ordinance was introduced and passed on first reading at the council’s regular meeting Jan. 2, and went into effect immediately after final adoption in accordance with law.

— Gina G. Scala

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