Maine Revised Statutes

§6111-C. Disconnection of water service for nonpayment of sewer services

Except as provided in subsection 4, this section applies to any consumer-owned water utility that is authorized to provide sewer services, notwithstanding any provision in its charter. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, in the event a user of the consumer-owned water utility's sewer system fails within a reasonable time to pay the utility's rates, fees or charges for sewer service, the utility may disconnect water service to the user, as long as the disconnection is accomplished in accordance with procedures established in applicable law or rules governing disconnection of utility services and terms and conditions approved by the commission. In order to exercise this authority, the utility must apply to the commission and the commission must approve terms and conditions consistent with the requirements of this section. [2009, c. 541, §1 (NEW).]

1. Annual filings.  The terms and conditions under this section must include a requirement that the consumer-owned water utility annually file with the commission a report that includes:
A. The total number of each of the following over the preceding 12 months:
(1) Disconnection notices issued;
(2) Disconnections completed; and
(3) Reconnections of disconnections; and [2009, c. 541, §1 (NEW).]
B. The reason for each disconnection. [2009, c. 541, §1 (NEW).]
[ 2009, c. 541, §1 (NEW) .]
2. Assistance program information.  The terms and conditions under this section must include a requirement that the consumer-owned water utility provide to customers to whom the utility sends disconnection notices information about available assistance programs, including programs that offer assistance in paying for sewer or water service, programs that offer assistance in paying for other utility services or in paying for heating fuel or similar assistance programs that could provide sufficient support to the customer to allow the customer to pay the utility's rates, fees or charges for sewer service.
[ 2009, c. 541, §1 (NEW) .]
3. Limitations.  The terms and conditions under this section must prohibit:
A. A disconnection based solely on a customer’s nonpayment of a fee or charge for estimated sewer service usage; and [2009, c. 541, §1 (NEW).]
B. A disconnection of a multiunit rental facility greater than 2 units unless the owner of the facility occupies a unit that would be subject to the disconnection. [2009, c. 541, §1 (NEW).]
[ 2009, c. 541, §1 (NEW) .]
4. Exception.  Subsection 3, paragraph B does not apply to a consumer-owned water utility that has authority pursuant to its charter to disconnect water service in the event a user of the consumer-owned water utility's sewer system fails to pay the utility's rates, fees or charges for sewer service, provided the charter provision establishing that authority was enacted prior to August 1, 2010.
[ 2009, c. 541, §1 (NEW) .]
SECTION HISTORY
2009, c. 541, §1 (NEW).