CHAPTER 14 WATER

 

 

Article I  Water

 

14-1     PUBLIC WATER SYSTEM.

 

14-1.1       Applicability of Regulations.

       Any person, firm or corporation receiving a supply of water for any purpose from the Elmer Borough Water Department shall be subject to the rules and regulations as set forth herein or by special or additional rules and regulations which may be adopted by ordinance or resolution. (Ord. No. 99-11 § 1)

 

14-1.2       Owner Responsible for Payment for Water Use; Cost to Become Lien.

       The owner of any house, tenement, building or lot shall each be liable for the payment of the price or rent as fixed herein or by the Borough Council for the use of water and for the installation, purchase price, repair and testing of any water meter, water service connections, appliances or parts and renewals thereof, furnished or made by the Water Committee in or upon such house, tenement, building or lot or connecting with such house, tenement, building or lot. The interest and penalties charged, and such price or rent or other costs, expenses, interest and penalties as fixed herein shall be a lien upon said house, tenement, building or lot until the same shall be paid and satisfied. (Ord. No. 99-11 § 2)

 

14-1.3       Duties of Water Collector and Water Superintendent.

       a.     Water Collector. The Water Collector shall have the following duties: he is hereby designated as the collector of all accounts receivable due for water service in the Borough; he shall be responsible to make out and send all water bills; he shall keep accurate records of all water accounts and shall be required to carry out the provisions of this section in relation to delinquent accounts, notices of shut-off and upon payment, the restoration of the water service; he shall account to the Chief Financial Officer monthly, for all moneys of the water service received, turning over to the Chief Financial Officer for the purpose of the Borough, all such moneys and a complete record thereof. He shall enter into a bond for the faithful performance of the aforesaid duties in such an amount as the Borough Council may require.

       b.     Water Superintendent. The Water Superintendent shall have the following obligations and/or duties: he shall be required to-report to the proper New Jersey State authorities concerning the operation of the water system; he shall be properly licensed for the duties herein described; he shall be responsible for the daily operation of the Water Department; he shall inspect and issue permits to all private wells within the Borough or located on property serviced by the Borough Water System and ensure that no cross connections occur. The Borough may appoint an Assistant Water Superintendent to assist the Water Superintendent with all duties and obligations described herein. The Assistant Superintendent shall have all powers of the Superintendent.

(Ord. No. 99-11 § 3)

 

14-1.4       Permit Required for Connection to Water System.

       No water connection shall be made to any portion of the water supply system by any person except upon proper permit issued by a duly authorized officer after proper application has been made, necessary fees paid in advance and approval secured in writing from the Water Committee, including the opening of any street or sidewalk for the introduction or change of water facilities. (See Chapter 8, Streets and Sidewalks, for street opening permits.) (Ord. No. 99-11 § 4)

 

14-1.5       Mandatory Connection; Service Outside Borough.

       All structures requiring water service within the Borough located within one hundred fifty (150) feet of a municipal water main shall connect to the Borough water system.

       All applications for the installation or renewal of water service connections shall be made in writing by the owner of the property or person acting as the owner's agent and signed by the owner or agent. There may be an application fee as established by the Borough.

       Water service may be provided to any person or structure outside the territorial limits of the Borough as approved by the Mayor and Borough Council. Any decision by the Mayor and Council shall be final and completely within their discretion. Nothing in this section shall be interpreted to require the Mayor and Council to approve any connection outside the territorial limits. (Ord. No. 2000-5 § 7)

 

14-1.6       Applications for Water Service; Extension of Distribution System.

       a      All applications for water service or the extension of the water distribution system shall contain an assent by the owner of the property where the water service is desired or by said owner's duly authorized agent to these rules, rates and regulations. The application shall state the date, name of party, kind and extent of service applied for, description and location of property to be supplied and the rates and terms of payment.

       b.     Application for the extension of the water distribution system may be made only where sufficient demand for service warrants. The Mayor and Council shall determine the terms and conditions upon which such applications or petitions may be granted.

       c.     All applications for water service shall continue in force from year to year unless thirty (30) days notice in writing is given to the Water Collector of a desire to terminate the service. In the event of a discontinuance of the use of water service from a tap, the Water Superintendent shall disconnect or turn off the tap at the main.

(Ord. No. 99-1 §§ 5, 7, 8)

 

14-1.7       Water Taps.

       All water taps are to be made by and through the Water Superintendent. (Ord. No. 99-11 § 6)

 

14-1.8       Water Meters.

     Each house and/or building on a property requiring or using water services with separate supply from a main shall be separately metered and charged. The owner of the property shall be responsible for water rents, fees or charges and if the water be cut off from the premises, the same shall not be turned on until all the rent or fees or charges due and all expenses for cutting off and turning on the water services shall be paid in full. (Ord. No. 99-11 § 9)

 

14-1.9       Disconnection from Water System.

       Service may be disconnected or turned off for any of the following reasons:

       a.     For the use of water on any other property or building or purpose than for which charge is being made;

       b.     For willful waste of water through improper or imperfect pipe, fixtures or otherwise;

       c.     For failure to maintain in good order connections, service lines or fixtures owned by the purchaser;

       d.     For tampering, disturbing or interfering with any service pipe or any other appliance of the water system owned by the Borough;

       e.     In case of vacancy of premises;

       f.     For neglecting to make or renew advance payments or for nonpayment of water service or any other charges accruing under the application;

       g.     For refusal of reasonable access to the property for purposes of inspection, reading the meter or repairs;

       h.     For fraudulent representation on the part of the consumer or the owner of the premises; and,

       i.      Persistent violation of the rules and regulations of the Water Committee.

(Ord. No. 99-11 § 10)

 

14-1.10     Damages; Rebates.

       No person shall be entitled to damages or rebate of any portion of payments due because of accidents, additions or repairs to any portion of the water system. (Ord. No. 99-11 § 11)

 

14-1.11     Review and Modification of Water Bill by the Borough Council.

       a.     The Borough Council may, upon the motion of a Borough water supply customer, the Water Superintendent, or upon its own motion modify, alter, redact, or otherwise change a water bill of a consumer from the Elmer Borough Water Department. If the Borough Council finds that: (1) the bill presented is in error; or, (2) is the result of an extraordinary circumstance(s): (a) causing unfairness or hardship to the consumer; and, (b) having found the consumer acted in good faith and with due diligence in resolving the extraordinary circumstance.

       An extraordinary circumstance shall be defined by the Mayor and Borough Council on a case by case basis.

       Modification of the bill may be made to any of the following: (1) amount of the total bill, (2) the gallons of water consumed for the period, (3) any other modification the Borough Council may find just under the circumstances.

       b.     Statute of limitations for this system of review shall be limited to a period of thirty (30) days following the quarterly billing date for which the requested modification applies. The applicable quarterly billing date shall be counted as day one (1) of the thirty (30) day period irrespective of the date of receipt by the customer.

       c.     Requests and/or motions to modify a water bill of a consumer under this subsection shall be made by written complaint addressed and delivered to the office of the Water Collector within the thirty (30) day period as defined above. The written complaint shall set forth the specific objection to the water bill and shall define any and all extraordinary circumstances that the petitioner believes justifies the request. The extraordinary circumstances must include the unfairness or hardship suffered by the consumer as a result of the extraordinary circumstances and define the good faith and/or due diligence of the consumer in resolving the extraordinary circumstance or in bringing this to the attention of the Water Collector. Service upon the Water Collector may be had on the Borough Clerk if the Water Collector is not available. The request for modification shall be heard at the next regularly scheduled Borough Council meeting provided the notice is at least ten (10) days before said meeting. If the ten (10) day notice period cannot be met then the matter shall be heard at the next regularly scheduled Borough Council meeting or at a special meeting to be set at the sole option of the Mayor and Borough Council. Any consumer requesting modification shall not be required to provide any notice to the public in order to have their matter heard. The Borough Council may render a decision on the request at the hearing in which the matter is heard or may delay decision on the matter for purposes of having a subsequent hearing, investigation, or any other reason believed to be justified under the circumstances.

(Ord. No. 99-11 § 13; Ord. No. 2000-5 § 1)

 

14-1.12     Water Rate.

       Water shall be billed at the rate of three ($3.00) dollars per one thousand (1,000) gallons of metered flow. (Ord. No. 99-11 § 15; Ord. No. 2011-3; Ord. No. 2013-4)

 

14-1.13     Advanced Quarterly Service Charges.

       Advanced quarterly services charges shall be charged as follows:

a.     Size of Meter

Service Charge

       5/8" x 3/4"

  $60.00

       1"

  $60.00

       1 1/2"

$136.00

       2"

$240.00

       2 1/2"

$391.00

       3"

$540.00

       b.     The foregoing charges do not include any water use.

(Ord. No. 99-11 § 16; Ord. No. 2011-3; Ord. No. 2013-4; Ord. No. 2018-12)

 

14-1.14     Charge for Delinquent Payments.

       All bills are due and payable upon presentation and must be paid by the end of the current quarter. All bills not paid by the end of the current quarter shall incur a late charge. The interest charge on all delinquent water accounts shall be a flat rate of five (5%) percent on the outstanding balance of water bills owed and shall be and remain a lien upon the real estate and the Borough shall have the same remedies for the collection of such charges and rents, with costs and penalties as the Borough has by law for the collection of taxes upon real estate. The change is to eliminate the compounding of interest so that a five (5%) percent flat rate, only, is charged on the total outstanding water fees. (Ord. No. 99-11 § 17; Ord. No. 2001-9 § 1)

 

14-1.15     Connection Fees; Fees for Installation of Meters.

a.          Connection fee shall be as follows:

        1.      3/4" or 1" water service:          $3,255.00

        2.      1 1/4" water service:               $3,307.50

        3.      1 ½" water service:                  $3,722.50

        4.      2” and above:  the applicant is required to assume all costs associated with the new water connection.

b.          All water meters shall be installed in the interior of the premises to be serviced unless there is a lack of interior space as determined by  the Water Department Superintendent or his designated representative, or unless the owner shall otherwise request in writing. If the water meter is to be installed outside of the premises to be serviced, it shall be located adjacent to or near the curb line.  The expense of the installation of a new water meter shall be borne by the applicant in accordance with the following fee schedule:

        1.      3/4" meter pit:                         $2,204.00 each

        2.      1" or 1 1/4" meter pit:             $2,704.50 each

        3.      1 1/2" meter pit:                      $2,704.50 each

        4.      2" meter pit and above:  the applicant is required to assume all costs associated with the new meter pit.

(Ord. No. 2001-3; Ord. No. 2002-3; Ord. No. 2003-4; Ord. No. 2004-3; Ord. No. 2005-2; Ord. No. 2006-2; Ord. No. 2007-15; Ord. No. 2008-2; Ord. No. 2009-2; Ord. No. 2011-2; Ord. No. 2012-2; Ord. No. 2013-1; Ord. No. 2014-2; Ord. No. 2015-2; Ord. No. 2016-2; Ord. No. 2017-1; Ord. No. 2018-1; Ord. No. 2019-1)

 

 

14-1.16     Repair Charges for Tampering with Meters.

       In the case of tampering, disturbing or interfering with any service of the water system as set forth herein the service charges for repair to tampered meter in addition to the cost of repair or maintenance shall be as follows:

       $250.00 first offense;

       $500.00 second offense;

       $1,000.00 for each subsequent offense.

(Ord. No. 99-11 § 18)

 

14-1.17     Public Fire Protection Charges.

       The Borough of Elmer finding no need to charge for service, there shall be no annual charge for each public fire hydrant. (Ord. No. 99-11 § 19; Ord. No. 2007-9)

 

14-1.18     Private Fire Protection Charges.

       a.     There shall be a charge for each private hydrant of ninety-seven ($97.00) dollars per year in service.

       b.     All bills are due upon presentation.

       c.     All service charges are payable in advance.

(Ord. No. 99-11 § 20)

 

14-1.19     Miscellaneous Water Charges.

       Miscellaneous water charges are as follows:

       a.     Test of meter at customer's request:

               $25.00 for meters for sizes one (1) inch or less.

               $150.00 per inch for other water service meters larger than

               one (1) inch in diameter.

       b.     Backflow Prevention System: $50.00 per inspection.

       c.     Construction: Water for building purposes shall be metered and charged $2.60 per 1,000 gallons.

       d.     Turn on/off fee at customers request: $25.00

       e.     Delinquency Fees.

        1.      Turn on/turn off fee following shut-off for delinquency:

(a)        $25.00 – turn on service

(b)        $25.00 – turn off service

        2.      Service charge to restore service where customer has turned water back on at curb after Department shut-off for delinquency and Department preventive action was required: $35.00.

        3.      Bad check charge for check issued at time of shut-off and said check returned by bank: $25.00 cash.

(Ord. No. 99-11 § 21)

 

14-1.20     Activation of Water Service.

       Water service will not be activated until all permits, taxes and/or municipal liens are satisfied for the property. (Ord. No. 99-11 § 22)

 

14-1.21     Waiver of Water Service Fees and Charges.

a.          The Mayor and the Borough Council hereby waives any and all charges, be it fees for connection, maintenance, consumption, or otherwise, relating to the Elmer water supply and Elmer Water Department for the following entities and/or properties:

1.            Borough Hall of the Borough of Elmer;

2.            Borough of Elmer Fire Department;

3.            Veterans Monument property;

4.            Little League Park (limited to the park's restrooms and club house);

5.            Elmer Ambulance Corps; and,

6.            Mini park at State and Main Streets.

(Ord. No. 2000-5 § 2; Ord. No. 2018-6)

 

14-1.22     Additional Water Supply Consumer.

       a.     Little League Park. The Little League Park shall be a consumer of the Elmer Borough Water Department and water supply system for purposes of any and all irrigation and/or other purposes beyond that set forth in subsection 14-1.21. A meter shall be added so as to enable the water consumption rate to be measured and any and all connection fees are waived as the park is Borough property.

       The Little League Park shall hereafter conform to the requirements of this section.

(Ord. No. 2000-5 § 3)

 

14-1.23     Authority of Inspectors; Estimation of Charges due to Inability to Read Meter.

       This section shall empower the Water Superintendent to inspect at any reasonable time all water meters of all Borough consumers so as to effectuate the purposes of the Water Department.

       The Water Superintendent and/or Assistant Water Superintendent may appoint additional inspectors as necessary in order to effectuate the inspection of all consumer water meters and the purposes of this section. Any inspector appointments shall be with the consent and approval of the Borough Council.

       Any customer who does not provide ready access for an inspection of the Borough's water supply system and/or meter in a manner that is sufficient to enable the inspector to comply with the requirements of this section shall be billed based upon an estimation of water consumption for the billing period applicable thereto. That estimation shall be based upon the highest quarterly billing statement of the previous four (4) billing quarters. Should this estimate be determined to have exceeded or be less than the actual consumption based upon the next meter reading, then any overage or underage shall be applied to the next quarterly billed statement.

       This manner of billing shall continue for consecutive billing cycles until a meter is actually read by an inspector. The failure of any consumer to provide access to any Borough meter reader for two (2) consecutive reading cycles shall be grounds to have the water service disconnected immediately as set forth herein.

(Ord. No. 2000-5 § 4)

 

14-1.24     Denial of Access to Water Meter.

       A consumer shall be deemed to have denied access to a water meter should the customer do any of the following:

       a.     Refuse entry or have access denied to the property by way of locked gate, fence, door, or barricade of any type;

       b.     Maintain upon the premises any animal or mechanical device in a manner that may cause injury to the meter reader;

       c.     The maintenance of any other object, device, person, animal, or thing, knowingly or unknowingly, upon the property in any manner that may cause the inspector to have a reasonable apprehension so as to enter the property; or,

       d.     Fail to cooperate with a inspector in arranging for a suitable time for inspection if the meter is unable to be read due to any of the reasons set forth herein.

       One shall be deemed to be uncooperative should an inspector be unable to gain access to the property within a five (5) day period.

       Should an inspector be unable to gain access to any property for reading of the meter on the inspector's initial attempt, the inspector shall make a reasonable effort to reinspect the property one time within five (5) days of the initial inspection. It shall be the duty of the consumer to ensure that an inspection may be had within the aforesaid five (5) day period.

(Ord. No. 2000-5 § 5)

 

14-1.25     Reasonable Time for Inspection.

       A reasonable time is consistent with the normal work hours of the Borough of Elmer, being Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (Ord. No. 2000-5 § 6)

 

14-1.26     Use of Fire Hydrants.

       a.     Permit Required. Fire hydrant use for any purpose requires a permit from the Elmer Borough Water Department. The use of fire hydrants by the Elmer Fire Department and other emergency management services is exempt from the requirement to obtain a permit;

       b.     A fee of fifty ($50.00) dollars will be charged for each permit obtained. Water consumed by the customer will be charged the rate consistent with the current charges being assessed to consumers of the Borough's public water system per one thousand (1,000) gallons usage. Rates can be obtained from the Elmer Borough Water Department. The Borough reserves the right to waive the permit fee for hydrant use by the Borough, its employees or agents, for official Borough business. However, any use of the hydrant system by the Borough or its employees or agents shall require a permit;

       c.     A backflow preventor, water meter, and hydrant wrench shall be supplied to the user by the Elmer Borough Water Department when the permit is obtained and shall be used by the permittee. Failure to abide by the rules and regulations set forth herein will be subject to a fine as set forth by the Elmer Borough Water Department.

       d.     A fine of up to five hundred ($500.00) dollars and/or up to thirty (30) days in jail will be assessed to any violator for each violation.

(Ord. No. 2003-6 §§ 1–4)

 

 

14-2     WATER EMERGENCIES.

 

14-2.1       Non-Drought Conditions—Watering of Lawns and Gardens.

(See Schedules A through C at the end of the chapter for watering of lawns during water alert and/or emergency.)

       Between June 1 and September 1, the residents of the Borough shall be permitted to water their lawns or gardens on an alternating day basis. Residents with an even street location number may water their lawns or gardens on days of the month with even numbers, while residents of the Borough with odd street location numbers may water their lawns or gardens on days of the month with odd numbers. (Ord. No. 96-3)

 

14-2.2       Drought Conditions; Emergency Plans Established.

       The Superintendent of the Borough of Elmer Water Department (hereinafter referred to as Superintendent) and/or the Borough of Elmer Water Committee (hereinafter referred to as Water Committee) shall be responsible for monitoring the Borough of Elmer's water supply. Should either the Superintendent or the Water Committee determine that the Borough's water supply has been reduced to a level insufficient to meet normal demand, and/or that the Borough's pumping rate exceeds the Borough's water allocation permit levels, established by the State of New Jersey, Department of Environmental Protection and Energy, then the Superintendent and/or the Water Committee shall recommend that either a water alert or a water emergency be declared, and that either a Phase I water alert plan, or a Phase II or a Phase III emergency plan be implemented as appropriate. Copies of the respective plans are attached hereto and marked as either Schedule A, Schedule B or Schedule C. (These schedules may be found at the end of this chapter.) (Ord. No. 96-3)

 

14-2.3       Implementation of Water Alert/Emergency Plan.

       The Mayor, upon recommendation of the Superintendent or Water Committee may declare, at his discretion, a Phase I water alert or a Phase II or a Phase III emergency plan as is set forth above.

       Once the Superintendent or Water Committee deems that an adequate water supply is available, he/they shall so notify the Mayor who then, at his discretion, shall terminate the water alert or water emergency plan. (Ord. No. 96-3)

 

14-2.4       Exemption for Privately Owned Wells.

       Those residents of the Borough who have privately owned and operated wells which supply all or a part of their water needs may apply to the Superintendent and/or Water Commission for a permit exempting them from the operation of this section. If such a permit is issued, it should be displayed upon request to any police officer, member of the Water Committee or the Superintendent. (Ord. No. 96-3)

 

14-2.5       Enforcement.

       This section shall be enforced by the Superintendent, the Water Committee, or a police officer, signing a complaint charging a violation of this section. Any person found guilty of violating the provisions of this section shall be subject to the penalties as set forth below. (Ord. No. 96-3)

 

14-2.6       Violations and Penalties.

       Any person found guilty of violating this section shall be penalized in accordance with the schedule of fines set forth on Schedule D which is attached hereto. (Schedule D may be found at the end of this chapter.) (Ord. No. 96-3)

 

14-2.7       Prolonged Water Shortage; Additional Restrictions.

       In case of prolonged scarcity of water from any cause, the Water Committee reserves the right upon public notice to restrict or prohibit:

       a.     The sprinkling, watering or irrigation of shrubbery, trees, lawns, grass, ground, ground covers, plants, vines, gardens, vegetables, flowers or other vegetation;

       b.     The washing of automobiles, trucks, trailers, trailer houses, or any other type of mobile equipment;

       c.     The washing of sidewalks, driveways, filling station aprons, porches and other outdoor surfaces;

       d.     The washing of the outside of dwellings and the washing of the inside and outside of office buildings and business establishments of any type;

       e.     The washing and cleaning of any business or industrial equipment and machinery;

       f.     The operation of any ornamental fountain or other structure making a similar use of water;

       g.     Swimming and wading pools and bath houses and bathing establishments of any nature; and,

       h.     The use of water by any business or industrial establishment whose business or work is not essential to the health, welfare and safety of the residents of the Borough.

(Ord. No. 99-11 § 12)

 

 

SCHEDULE A  PHASE I WATER ALERT

Borough of Elmer

(Subsection 14-2.2)

 

       In the event that a Phase I water alert is declared, the following regulations shall become effective:

       1.     The use of any water for watering of lawns and gardens shall be on an odd-even basis (odd-numbered street addresses on odd-numbered dates, even-numbered street addresses on even-numbered dates). Water shall be applied to lawns and gardens only between the hours of 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

       2.     Water shall not be used to clean paved roads, streets, sidewalks, driveways, garages, and patios.

 

 

SCHEDULE B  PHASE II WATER EMERGENCY

Borough of Elmer

(Subsection 14-2.2)

 

       In the event that a drought emergency is declared, Phase II of the Water Emergency Plan shall be implemented and the following regulations shall be mandatory.

       1.     The use of any water for watering of lawns and gardens shall be permitted on an odd-even basis (odd-numbered street addresses on odd-numbered dates, even-numbered street addresses on even-numbered dates). Water shall be applied to lawns from the hours of 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

       2.     The use of any water for cleaning of paved roads, streets, sidewalks, driveways, garages, and patios shall be prohibited.

       3.     The use of water for cleaning of automobiles is prohibited except by commercial car washes equipped with facilities that recycle water.

       4.     The use of water to fill and top off swimming pools shall be prohibited except for pools serving over 25 dwellings with filtration equipment allowing for continued use and recycling of water over the swimming season.

       5.     The serving of water in restaurants shall be prohibited unless requested by the customer.

 

 

SCHEDULE C  PHASE III WATER EMERGENCY

Borough of Elmer

(Subsection 14-2.2)

 

       In the event that a water emergency is declared and Phase III of the water emergency plan is implemented, the following nonessential water use shall be banned:

       1.     Watering of lawns.

       2.     Noncommercial washing of automobiles.

       3.     Serving of water in restaurants unless requested by the customer.

       4.     Use of fire hydrants for other than fire fighting or public safety.

       5.     Watering of plants, shrubs, or gardens by means other than a bucket.

       6.     Water for washing streets, sidewalks, driveways, garages, and patios.

       7.     The use of water to fill or top swimming pools.

 

 

SCHEDULE D  WATER EMERGENCY PENALTY AND ENFORCEMENT

Borough of Elmer

(Subsection 14-2.2)

 

       In the event that a water emergency is declared, the Borough of Elmer may require the use of its police force or deputize people to enforce the following penalties:

       1.     Any person or persons in violation of Phase I of the Water Alert/Emergency Plan shall be fined $100.00.

       2.     A person found guilty of violating Phase II or Phase III of the Water Alert/Emergency Plan shall be fined $300.00.

(Ord. No. 2013-7)

CHAPTER 14 WATER
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