FAQ Regarding Utilities Billing
People are hearing and reading media reports regarding the financial impact that purchasing scarce power supplies on the open market during this unprecedented winter event will have on electric customers’ bills including some reported in the thousands of dollars. This will not be the case for city of Boerne Electric customers. The city of Boerne Utilities is owned by the citizens of Boerne and operated in such a way as to provide safe, reliable power supply and stable pricing for its customer/owners. The city does not engage in the type of variable/market-based power purchasing or pricing to the customer that could allow this type of price shock to occur.
Many customers will experience high water consumption due to burst pipes and dripping faucets during the freezing temperatures. To mitigate the impact of these weather-related leaks and high usage, city of Boerne Water customers will be billed the lower of their current month’s usage that includes the week of February 14th or their prior months usage.
Natural Gas Update
Similar to the electric utility, customers can expect higher bills due to higher consumption. As a result of prior cost stabilization measures in place before the event, we do not anticipate that customers will see anything more than supply cost increases that are normal for this time of year.
February water usage is typically included in the calculation of residential sewer billings for the following twelve months. Winter water usage is normally the lowest time of water consumption during the year. With this winter event, that will not be the case this year and billings will be normalized by excluding that consumption from the calculation. Commercial accounts will also be adjusted to account for unexpected high consumption.
Solid Waste Pickup
The city’s provider, Waste Management (WMI) has issued this statement: “We are servicing the City per normal collection schedules and routes. Our trucks are anticipated to move slow through the normal weeks routes and break off to the landfill multiple times each day. We will be collecting neatly bagged excess placed outside the cart due to missed pickup with the storm. The neatly bagged excess should not include storm debris, construction debris, hazardous material, bulky or brush items. Our operations team is dedicating additional trucks to the city in hopes of completing the routes each day – if we do not, we ask that those residents left unfinished leave their cart and neatly bagged excess at the curb for collection the following day.”
Bulky item and brush collection is still scheduled for next week, beginning March 1.
Customer Utility Billings
Effective immediately, the city of Boerne Utilities will suspend late payment penalties and service disconnection for non-payment. Customers should expect electric and natural gas bills to be higher than normal but not due to pricing changes. Because of the extreme cold from this historic event, our customers should expect to see electric bills that are more like the ones seen in the hottest months of the summer. No bills currently due have yet been impacted by the extreme conditions of the week of February 14th. The first time that higher usage from that period will impact customers will be for bills rendered in mid-March.
The City is waiving contractor permit fees for any storm related damage for a 60-day period. Customers should be aware that a contractor is not paying the permit fee; therefore, the fee should not be charged to you either. More information is available here.
The city of Boerne Utilities Customer Service Team is always ready to work with any customers who are having difficulty paying their bills. Please contact 249-9511 option 1 to speak with a representative that can assist you.