In January 2014 members were informed on their WRA water bills that payments are to go to the WRA office or Post Office box. Sallal is no longer performing the billing or accepting payments. This has also been posted on the WRA website, covered in the newsletter and discussed on the Wilderness Rim Facebook page.
The practice for sending shut-off notices for the last few years has been to allow members who reside in their WRA homes to receive a full six months of water service without payment before their accounts were provided with a shut-off notice. Since the WRA office has recently resumed the billing duties for the WRA Water System, WRA followed this same process for the late notices provided to members in March (2014).
Notices posted in the fourth week of March were for accounts unpaid since the November 30, 2013 billing. The billing for January 31, 2014 had also not been paid on time, and late notices were sent out on March 16 with instructions to pay by March 25 to the WRA office to avoid service interruption. These accounts had not paid for four months of billed water service and we were just a week away from billing for an additional two months. Members received water service for six months with no payments on the account.
It is the responsibility of each member to pay their water charges when due. Any member who is in need of consideration for special circumstances in regard to their bill is regularly encouraged in newsletters and on the WRA website to contact the office to make arrangements to ensure that their service is uninterrupted. When members do not respond to such notices and billings, WRA’s only option is to remind them that the water is not free and will be shut-off for non-payment.
A review of the WRA Rules and Regulations for the water operation clearly shows that accounts can be shut-off for non-payment after each billing cycle. Effective with the bills due on April 30, 2014 the WRA will begin to apply the rules properly to all accounts. Any account with past due charges (amounts dated prior to March 31) as of April 15, 2014 will receive a shut-off warning. A few days later any account still unpaid will be provided with a last notice of WRA’s intent to shut-off the water for continued non-payment.
Accounts with charges from the March reading still unpaid by the middle of May will receive similar notices. As a general rule, accounts not paid with-in forty-five days will be subject to shut-off.
WRA exercises as much latitude and consideration as possible for members who make a reasonable effort to pay their bills. Those who do not will have their water shut-off and the $100 fee to have the water turned on again will be assessed to their account. To have the water turned on the account balance will need to be paid in full including late fees and the $100 fee.
Further, members who are delinquent in their water account may be required to provide a deposit to be held against future charges in addition to bringing the account current. The account will be required to be kept current for a reasonable period of time before the deposit can be refunded.
Please contact the office at any time that your water bill is going to be paid late. WRA does not want to shut-off any member’s water. Contact information for WRA is in every newsletter and billing that you receive. The office phone (425-888-0087) and email (office@WildernessRim.org) are the best ways to contact WRA when the office is not staffed.
We own this business together, but the business can’t allow members to avoid responsibility for their water bills.