The City of Livingston Board of Mayor and Alderman met in regular session last night and discussed a water relief program—an insurance program that would allow the city to make up lost revenue from utility forgiveness.
As previously reported in the Livingston Enterprise, William T. Ridley a representative of Water Leak Relief presented his product that would essentially insure relief on the customer’s side for water leakage.
He explained that if the program is adopted by the city, they can provide coverage to the customers in the amount up to level selected by the city.
“We’re covering the customer so that the customer doesn’t have any out-of-pocket expense,” he said.
While the customer would not have to pay any expense if a leak were to occur, he explained that the customer would still have to pay in some.
“If you select $2,500 in coverage for all of your customers, it would add $2.20 to their water bill,” he said.
According to Ridley if the city were to adopt the program, all customers would be automatically enrolled with the option to opt out at any time.
According to Hayes, the city is losing between $50,000-$60,000 per year due to their utility “forgiveness” plan.
If this were adopted, both the customer and city would benefit, the customer would be able to claim at least twice a year and the city would make up for lost revenue without increasing utility costs.
Instead of the $2.20 per customer, upon Ridley’s second visit last night, the price would be $2.45.
According to Ridley after further discussion with Mayor Curtis Hayes, the contract that has been drawn out would cover the customer for up to $2,000 at $2.45 per customer. The customer would be able to make two claims per calendar year versus the one they are able to make currently.
Some alderman were skeptical of the program and pondering why the city needs such a thing.
Alderman Kelly Coleman raised the question: why can’t the city implement its own relief fee of about or near $1 per customer and save their constituents money?
“We have roughly 4,900 water customers in the city” he said. “If I take 4,900 customers and multiply it by $2.45 per month and multiply that by 12 months, you’re going to collect $147,000 roughly… The City of Livingston’s loss of revenue averages around $50,000.”
For more on this story, pick up a copy of this week’s Livingston Enterprise.