Disconnection

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Customer Service - Monday-Friday - 8:30am-5:00pm - 267-347-5009 or utilitybilling@quakertown.org
Utility Emergency-After Hours - 215-721-3520

Utility Service Disconnection/Termination
If you have difficulty paying your bills or if you are not making payments for any other reason, contact us as soon as possible. By notifying the Borough immediately, you may avoid disconnection of your service. The following information concerns both your rights and responsibilities regarding service disconnection. Utilities that are disconnected for any reason are still charged the minimum monthly fee.

Payment Arrangements
A payment arrangement is an agreement you reach with the Borough to make reasonable payments over a period of time for the amount of money that you owe. The Borough will not make any payment arrangements with a tenant without landlord approval. The size of your payments will vary, depending on such things as:

*Payment history.
*Length of time your payment has been overdue.
*Size of the unpaid balance.
*Tenants must have landlord authorization.

When Utility Service Can Be Disconnected
The Borough can disconnect your utility service Monday through Friday for any of the reasons listed below.

*Non-payment of an undisputed bill for service, non-payment of a payment arrangement, non-payment of a security deposit, or a “bad” check/dishonored credit card used to avoid a shutoff.
*Tampering with Borough meters or other Borough property, or stealing utility service.
*False statement or fraud in obtaining your utility service.
*Refusal to allow utility employees to read your meter or to check Borough equipment.

Tenants – When Service is in Your Landlord’s Name
If your landlord either fails to pay utility bills for your residence or instructs the Borough to shut off your service, you must be notified by the Borough at least 30 days in advance. Depending upon circumstances, disconnect notices may be mailed, personally delivered, posted on individual dwelling units and common areas, or a combination of these methods.

When Utility Service Cannot Be Shut Off
The Borough will not disconnect your service or non-payment of bills:

*More than four years old.
*For either merchandise or service work.
*In someone else’s name, unless you were an occupant or your name was on the lease, mortgage or deed of the affected property.

For low-income customers, service may not be shut off between December 1 and March 31 (see the winter termination section that follows).

Winter Terminations
Your utility service can be shut off during winter months (December 1 through March 31) if you fail to pay your bill. In order to avoid disconnection in the winter months, your income must be at or below 250 percent of the federal poverty level. Poverty levels change each year. You should check each year because your eligibility for possible winter termination of service may change. To be eligible for a Winter Termination Exemption, you must make application with the Borough by providing the Borough with a copy of your current year’s Federal Tax Return. Full payment of any outstanding balance is due in April to avoid disconnection. Electric disconnects during the winter months may cause freezing water pipes and other complications associated with the cold weather, so electric shut off is not used as a means for collection of past due electric accounts other than the time frame stated above. We will shut off water for past due electric accounts. 

The Disconnection Process
Disconnection of utility service is a very serious matter. Paying current utility bills or keeping up with payment agreements helps you to avoid a disconnection. It is important to contact the Borough as soon as you receive a notice about an overdue bill or for failure to provide access to the utility’s meter or equipment. Notices may include bill reminders, letters, and phone calls. 

The Borough Follows These Steps Before Disconnecting Your Service:
*At least 10 days prior to the scheduled disconnection date, your utility Borough must notify you in writing. This “10–day disconnection notice” is effective for a period of up to 60 days. The 10-day notice will inform you about what action you can take to avoid having your service disconnected. (Please note: In certain cases, the Borough does not have to give you a 10-day notice before we disconnect your service. It may begin the disconnection process with a 3-day notice. The 3-day notice may be by telephone.)

*At least three days before your service is disconnected, the Borough will attempt to contact you in person or by telephone. The Borough may proceed with the disconnection even if the contact was not successful.

*At the time of disconnection during the winter (December 1 through March 31), the Borough must attempt to contact a responsible adult at your residence. If no adult is home, the Borough will leave a notice at your residence stating that service will be disconnected within 48 hours unless payment is made.

*Between April 1 and November 30, your utility will not leave a 48-hour notice.  During those months, the Borough may proceed with the disconnection on or after the scheduled day on the disconnection notice if you have not paid your past due bills or made arrangements with your utility to pay your bill.

*If your service is disconnected, the Borough must provide you with a notice indicating why your service was disconnected and what steps you can take to get your service restored.

The Restoration Process – Getting Your Service Back On
Between April 1 and November 30, the Borough will restore your service within three days if you pay the amount you owe in full, make a payment arrangement if eligible, and meet any other conditions required by the Borough. If your service was disconnected during the winter (December 1 through March 31), the Borough will reconnect service within 24 hours if you pay the bill in full, make a payment arrangement if eligible and meet any other conditions. No service disconnected will be reconnected after 8:00pm on regular business days. The Borough will charge a fee to restore your utility service. Remember, to avoid having your utility service disconnected, you have the responsibility to contact the Borough immediately with any billing dispute or payment problem. To have service reconnected after 5:00pm during regular business days, please call 215.723.3520. No reconnection during weekends and holidays. Payment in full is required along with the required reconnection fee:

                                  In-town                    Out-of-Town
7am-4pm               $50.00                      $35.00
After 4pm             $250.00                    $40.00