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Utilities - FAQs


Utilities Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently asked questions of the Utilities Department are:

1) Why am I being charged more for sewer than water?

Sewer is charged at a higher rate than water although both charges are calculated using the amount of water that your household uses per billing period in the winter months and is charged using the average winter usage during the summer months.

Your sewer bill is calculated by taking your water consumption, multiplying that by the current sewer rate (.0549 per hundred cubic feet) and adding in the base fee.

A residential customer who used 1000 cubic feet of water would calculate their sewer charges as follows: $61.10 (base fee) + (.0549 x 1000) = $116.00

2) I just filled my swimming pool. Will I be charged for my sewer even though the water does not go into the sewer?

Yes. Your sewer charges are based on your water consumption regardless of whether the water finds the sewer or not. A system based on consumption does not put the burden of paying for the sewer system on households who conserve water. The good news is that during summer months, your sewer charges will be based on your average winter consumption, so you probably won't see a spike in your bill for filling a pool, as long as you do it during the summer.

3) What are the expectations for setting out my garbage & recycle containers for collection day?

We encourage you to place your garbage and/or recycling container out for collection the night before your scheduled pickup day and bring them back within 24 hours after they have been emptied.

4) Who do I call when my recycling or garbage container does not get collected?

If your recycling or garbage container is missed, please fill out our online reporting form or contact the city at (360) 225-8281 during regular business hours. Please keep in mind that, although your street may appear to have a 'regular' time that your containers are picked up, that Waste Control may pick up any time during your collection day. Waste Control will strive to pick up your missed containers within 24 hours of the time that the city contacts them.

5) What do I do with my household hazardous waste?

Household hazardous waste is accepted at the Waste Control Transfer Station every Tuesday and Saturday from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Items accepted include batteries, pesticides, thinners, solvents, paints, motor oil, antifreeze, toxic, corrosives or flammable materials.

6) Who do I call when my recycling or garbage container is damaged or missing?

If your recycling or garbage container is damaged or missing, please complete our online reporting form or contact the city at (360) 225-8281 during regular business hours. You will be asked to place your container where a Waste Control employee can see it. Waste Control will do their best to repair or replace as soon as possible.

7) What is the pick-up schedule during holidays?

Waste collection and curbside recycling services are uninterrupted during holidays, except for Christmas and New Years Day.  If your pick-up day falls on Christmas or New Years Day, then your garbage and recycling will be collected the following day for the remainder of the week. A good rule of thumb would be, "if in doubt, put your garbage out."

8) What do I do if I suspect that I have a leak?

As soon as you suspect that you may have a leak, start checking for it. Use our tips from our "Leaks" page to detect what may be going on. If you still can't detect something you may want to call a plumber to assist. Once a leak has been found and fixed, complete a Leak Adjustment Form, available in our office, attach all receipts pertaining to the leak and submit it to our office. The Utilities Clerk will go back to the last year's billings and adjust your bill to reflect your average yearly usage. This can only be done once per year. Keep in mind that the quicker you repair a leak and let us know, the quicker we can process an adjustment if applicable, and customers are still responsible for their charges until the adjustment is approved and processed. Please call our office at 360-225-8281 for any questions