’t receive any bill at
all from IAWC.
IAWC spokesman Joe Loughmiller told the Chesterton Tribune on Wednesday that
the water company is still “working through” bugs in a new software
platform, which “if for some reason can’t validate a customer’s water usage
ends up kicking it out of the system.”
The problem is called a “no-read” and it’s making trouble for the Chesterton
Utility, which calculates customers’ sewer bills based on their water
consumption. The assumption is that all water flowed from taps and
showerheads, flushed in toilets, and used by washing machines ends up at the
wastewater treatment plant.
But if IAWC submits to the Utility a no-read for a given customer, the
Utility can’t calculate that customer’s bill and can only charge the fixed
base rate of $23.46.
“The new software platform handles things that interface with customers,
including municipalities,” Loughmiller said. “Any time you put in a new
system, there will be issues, data not carrying through. It’s brand new and
now things are working in a different way. We’re talking to municipalities,
trying to work through it.”
The Town of Chesterton is not the only municipality with water-company
issues, Loughmiller added, and for that reason a weekly conference call has
been scheduled on Wednesdays to give community reps the chance to ask
questions and trouble-shoot problems.
“Certainly we’ve made progress,” Loughmiller said. “We’ve come a long way
over the last few weeks since we put the system in place.”
Here’s the thing, though. If you’re one of those customers who not only
didn’t get properly billed by the Chesterton Utility in the last period but
also never received the previous water bill, you’re staring down the double
barrels of two pretty hefty reconciliation bills sometime in the future.
“You can always pay what you normally pay,” Loughmiller said. “If you
overpay, it will get credited to your account.”
Meanwhile, Chesterton Utility Superintendent Terry Atherton is urging
customers to check their previous sewer bill. If it seems light, a good idea
would similarly be to make an estimated payment to the Utility, to keep the
future reconciliation bill manageable.
Or you can contact IAWC’s call center at (800) 492-8373 to make a payment.
If for some reason you’re not reading this and not staying current on which
bills you’ve received and which you haven’t, and weeks or months from now
you do receive a big reconciliation bill, Loughmiller said that IAWC will be
open to making payment arrangements.