March 9, 2016 (Flint, Mich) — Flint Mayor Karen Weaver said today, City employees are doing everything they can to get accounts in order so credits can be applied to water bills of Flint utility customers. While staff is working to make necessary adjustments, including obtaining the proper computer programs needed to calculate and apply adjustments and credits to the city’s more than 85,000 active and inactive utility accounts on record from April 2014 to present, Mayor Weaver has ordered that mailing of bills be suspended.
Last week, the governor approved a $30 million plan to assist Flint residents with water bills in light of the man-made water disaster in the City. Flint employees are working diligently so residents are able to see the savings reflected on their water bills as soon as possible. In effort to have the credits be applied to the entire amount owed by Flint utility customers, a few things must be done first.
Adjustments are needed to some accounts that were past due back in August of 2015. The fees were “set aside” after a judge issued a ruling on water rates in August 2015. This January, the same judge amended his August ruling, finding the water rates were set properly. So, the amount that was “set aside” on those past due accounts will now appear on the customers’ bill.
Another adjustment required on some utility accounts relates to balances from delinquent bills that were placed on property taxes. The water portion of the property tax bill has been returned to customer accounts to that the water credit can be calculated and applied.
By issuing a suspension on mailing out bills, the necessary adjustments can be made to Flint utility accounts to make the accounts whole. Instead of seeing their account balances get higher, due to the needed adjustments, the next bill most customers receive should include the credits from the state. The estimated average amount that will be applied to customer accounts is around $600. The bills are expected to be sent out in April.
“The credits are coming”, said Mayor Weaver. “Flint residents need and deserve this relief. I’ve said from day one, Flint residents should not have to pay for water they can not and are not using.”