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$500 Water Bill Hearing Monday

Updated: Sunday, July 20 2014, 11:38 PM CDT


The village of Riverton operates all of its own utilities: gas, electricity, and water.

"The way the ordinance is written--- those utilities are provided to you when you're the owner or you're the user of those utilities-- the ordinance says you have to pay them," Tom Pavlik of Delano Law Offices said.

In an impromptu meeting over her $534 water bill Riverton Mayor Tom Rader said Patricia Jones could go before the Riverton Village Utility Committee to contest it. That committee is made up of three village trustees.

"If you don't pay it or make payment arrangements they have the right to disconnect your utilities," Pavlik said.

We asked him to review the Riverton ordinance and explain your rights as a utility customer. He says the process of disputing a bill in Riverton is informal. The committee hearing Monday is the next logical step.

Rader was still wearing our microphone when he had the following conversation with two village employees.

"They told me you never read the meter; you just estimated. That's what they're saying," Rader said.

"I never admitted to nothing. I said-- what I would've said was --it's a possibility it was read wrong; not admitted to nothing," a village utility employee said in response.

It's not illegal, but in terms of creating trust that things will run fairly in her hearing --this doesn't do much.

"As a citizen I should be afforded, fair treatment, equal rights, no one should be pre-judging it," Pavlik said.

The hearing is Monday at 5:30 in the Riverton Village Hall. It was determined that there is no leak at Jones's house, and her bill returned to the normal range after that massive spike in April of 2013. She isn't sure if she'll bring an attorney to the hearing. They could charge $500 an hour for their service. Jones is considering voicing her displeasure with her vote in the next election.

$500 Water Bill Hearing Monday

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