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High water use bill adjustment requirements posted online

Posted Jan. 8, 2018

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In order to be transparent with customers on how adjustments related to high bill complaints are managed, Fort Worth is now posting the formalized requirements on its website. The Water Department has been working with District 3 Councilmember Brian Byrd to formalize the process and information communicated.

“The Water Department has been working with customers on these unexplained high bill occurrences for many years. I encouraged them to be transparent with the process. Transparency helps build trust. Transparency will make our ratepayers aware of the process for having the instance reported and investigated,” Byrd said.

For decades, the Water Department has worked with customers on high bill complaints and provided courtesy adjustments for having leaks repaired or when a single bill increases and is inconsistent with historical usage data for the account.

The water leak repair adjustment rewards customers for fixing leaks and is limited to one in a rolling 12-month period. The undefined high water use adjustment addresses a single bill that is more than twice as high as a customer’s previous usage for similar billing periods when there is no leak to fix. It is limited to one in a rolling 24-month period.

“Occasionally, we have residential customers who experience a one-month bill that significantly exceeds the normal usage for that account. We work with the customer to investigate the issue and at times are unable to determine why it occurred,” said Kara Shuror, assistant director of the Water Department.

To be eligible to submit an application for an undefined high water use bill adjustment, it must be a single-family residential account holder. The application must be submitted within 60 days of the end of the service period for the bill in question. There must be at least 13 consecutive months of water use for the accountholder at that address, and water use must be greater than two times the average use for similar billing periods in the previous three years. In addition, the customer cannot have received an undefined high bill adjustment during the previous 24 months.

Read information on the requirements for receiving either adjustment.

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