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March 27, 2002

Contact: (718/595-3601)

Hearings on Proposed Rates and Changes

PUBLIC NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN THAT in accordance with Section 1045-j(3) of the Public Authorities Law, public hearings will be held on April 17, 18 and 19, 2002, concerning proposed rates and charges to be effective July 1, 2002, for the use of, or services rendered or made available in New York City by the Water and Wastewater System of the City of New York (the "System") and concerning changes to certain billing policy and regulatory programs to be incorporated into the New York City Water Board's Rate Schedule effective July 2, 2002. The hearings will be held as follows:

Borough Place Date/Time
Staten Island College of Staten Island
Center for the Arts, Recital Hall
2800 Victory Boulevard
Staten Island, NY 10314
Wednesday
April 17, 2002
10:00 A.M.
Brooklyn Brooklyn NYC Technical College
Atrium Amphitheater
300 Jay Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201

Wednesday
April 17, 2002
3:00 P.M.

Bronx Herbert H. Lehman College
Carman Hall, Rm. B-08
250 Bedford Park Boulevard West
Bronx, NY 10468
Thursday
April 18, 2002
9:30 A.M.
Manhattan St. John's University - Manhattan
2nd Floor Auditorium
101 Murray Street
New York, NY 10007
Thursday
April 18, 2002
5:00 P.M.
Queens Department of Environmental Protection
Lecture Room, 6th Floor
59-17 Junction Boulevard
Flushing, NY 11373
Friday
April 19, 2002
9:30 A.M.

 

It is anticipated that there will be a change from currently effective water and wastewater rates for services provided during the fiscal year
commencing July 1, 2002:

  1. Metered and unmeterd water rates will increase by an amount not to exceed 6.5%

  2. The wastewater rate will remain at 159% of the corresponding water charge which is payable on each account.

  3. The regulated rate for water provided to municipalities and water districts outside of the City which does not exceed the allowance quantities set forth in Section 24-360 of the Administrative Code of the City of New York will increase to an amount not to exceed $486.34 per million gallons, and the rate charged for water provided to municipalities and water districts outside of the City which exceeds the allowance quantities of water set forth in Section 24-360 of the Administrative Code of the City of New York will be equal to the in-City metered rate of an amount not to exceed $1,925.13 per million gallons.

It is also contemplated that changes to certain billing policy and regulatory programs will be considered.

  1. Shut-Off Regulation - Expand Criteria for Shut-Off Candidates
    Current provisions of the Board's "Regulation Governing the Discontinuance of Water Supply and/or Sewer Service Because of Nonpayment" specify criteria that delinquent charges must meet before service can be terminated or noticed. These are:
    • in the case of non-residential accounts, there must exist at least one delinquent charge open and unpaid for at least 2 years;
    • in the case of one to five unit residential accounts, there must exist at least one delinquent charge open and unpaid for at least 3 years;
    • in the case of six or more unit residential accounts, there must exist at least one delinquent charge open and unpaid for at least 2 years.
  2. The staff proposal is to respecify the termination of service eligibility criteria to be more consistent with the City's lien sale eligibility criteria. It is proposed that the regulation be modified to state two alternate criteria. Termination of service will be authorized if there exists: i) at least one delinquent charge open and unpaid for at least one year and amounting to at least $1,000, or ii) accumulated delinquent charges totaling at least $10,000.

  3. Denial of Access Regulation
    This new regulation is proposed to consist of two parts: i) the imposition of a denial of access fee amounting to $50 when an owner fails to facilitate access to the premises after DEP has issued an appropriate demand for access notice and the owner has failed to provide or facilitate access; and, ii) after the imposition of the fee and the issuance by DEP of a second demand for access notice, DEP may commence termination of service pursuant to a proposed new regulation authorizing the discontinuance of water supply or sewer service for denial of access, if the owner continues to not provide or facilitate access to the premises. This proposed regulation will provide procedures similar to those previously authorized by the Board in the shut-off regulation for non-payment.

  4. Backbilling Limitation - Increase to Four Years
    It is proposed that the Board modify its backbilling limitation to provide a 4-year limitation with respect to upwardly adjusting previously unbilled or underbilled charges to provide consistency with a recently enacted State law mandating a 4-year complaint filing period.

  5. Payment Agreements - Provide Increased Flexibility
    The Rate Schedule currently provides that all payment agreements must include at least a 25% down payment and be amortized over a term not to exceed 3 years. It is proposed that DEP management be permitted to enter into any payment agreement with a delinquent customer deemed by the Commissioner to be reasonable and appropriate.

  6. Suspension of the Board's Leak Forgiveness Program during Drought Emergencies
    In order to enhance the importance of water conservation and increase incentives to repair leaks during water shortage emergencies, it is proposed that the Leak Forgiveness Program be suspended during declared drought emergencies. It is proposed that no leak forgiveness will be provided for any property affected by a leak which occurs during or extends into a time period during which a drought emergency is or was in effect.

All members of the public who wish to obtain copies of the Board's Information Booklet describing the rate proposal, and the changes to the billing policy and regulatory programs, or who wish to testify at the hearing should contact Kevin Kunkle, New York City Water Board, 59-17 Junction Boulevard, 8th Floor, Flushing, NY 11373, Telephone (718) 595-3601 not later than April 12, 2002. Oral testimony will be limited to five (5) minutes duration. A copy of any prepared or written statement may be submitted to the Water Board at the above address at least two days prior to the meeting.

More Information

NYC Department of Environmental Protection
Public Affairs

59-17 Junction Boulevard
19th Floor
Flushing, NY 11373

(718) 595-6600