Section 27-20 Security deposits.
Prior to the adoption of Ord. 18513 on 05/16/2005, Section 27-20 read as follows.
(a) Each new customer shall be required to make a security deposit as a condition
(1) Customers requesting services to a one-family dwelling
or one-family unit of a larger
residential building shall deposit the following amounts for receiving utility services:
a. Electrical service $
b. Water service
c. Sewer service
d. Refuse service
At the discretion of the finance director, the security deposit may be waived upon the customer
establishing one (1) year (twelve consecutive months) good credit or furnishing a letter of good
credit from the customers previous utility provider. The finance director will maintain
policy that defines good credit.
(2) When more than one of the above services is requested,
the amount of the deposit shall
be the total amount of the fees shown for the services requested. The finance director may also
increase security deposits for residential accounts to minimize the city's risks where appropriate.
(b) A residential landlord requesting services for a rental unit shall make a
based on the number of rental units for which the landlord has utility security deposits with the
First 25 units . . . . . . . . . . . . . .$10.00 per unit
Units in excess of 25 . . . . . . . . . . $5.00 per unit
The maximum amount of security deposits a residential landlord shall be required
regardless of the number of rental units, is one thousand dollars ($1,000.00). At the discretion of
the finance director,
landlord security deposits may be waived upon the landlord having
established a minimum of three (3) years continuous timely payments the customer may request
the deposit be waived upon the customer establishing one (1) year (twelve consecutive months)
good credit with the City of Columbia. The finance director will maintain a written policy that
defines good credit
(c) In order for customers to obtain service to a commercial establishment or
for any use other
than single-family residential use, they shall be required to meet one of the following provisions:
(1) Make a deposit based on twice the estimated amount
of thirty (30) days' bill for those
services requested for new accounts, and be adjusted to twice the actual average as necessary.
The finance director may also increase security deposits for commercial accounts to minimize the
city's risks where appropriate.
(2) Furnish equivalent bond or letter of credit.
At the discretion of the finance director, commercial security deposits may be waived upon the
commercial customer having established a minimum of three (3) years' continuous timely
(d) Service deposits may be transferred or applied to a new residence or business
location if a
customer moves. Adjustment shall be made if the amount of deposit is inadequate or excessive.
(e) The department may require an
additional security deposit as a condition of continued
service if, in an unauthorized manner, the customer interferes with or diverts the service of the
utility situated on or about or delivered to the customer's premises.
The department may require
a signed application for service and additional security deposit from any customer giving false
information to access City of Columbia utility services.
(f) No additional security deposit shall be required by the department on the
basis of the
customer's age, sex, race, creed, national origin, marital status, number of dependents, source of
income, or geographical area of residence.
(g) Upon termination of service, the deposit shall be credited to the final
bill and the balance,
if any, shall be returned to the customer.
Customer security deposits may be refunded upon the customer having established a
minimum of three (3) years of continuous timely payments on his current account, or a prior or
transferred account. At the discretion of the finance director, the security deposit may
upon the customer establishing one (1) year (twelve consecutive months) good credit or
furnishing a letter of good credit from the customers previous utility provider. The finance
director will maintain a written policy that defines good credit.
Should the deposit be credited to
a customer's account and the customer's services discontinued subsequently due to nonpayment,
the customer will be required to make the proper security deposits in addition to other charges
and fees as a requisite for resumption of services.
(i) The department shall maintain a record of all deposits received from customers,
the name of each customer, the location of the premises occupied by the customer at the time the
deposit was required and each successive location while the deposit is retained, and the date and
amount of deposit.
(j) Each customer posting a security deposit shall receive in writing
at the time of tender of
deposit receipts as evidence thereof, which, where applicable, contains the following minimum
(1) Name of customer.
(2) Place of payment.
(3) Date of payment.
(4) Amount of payment for fees and deposits.
In addition, each customer shall sign a service agreement which states the terms and conditions
governing the retention, payment and return of deposits.
(k) The department shall apply deposit standards uniformly as a condition of
utility service to
(Code 1964, § 15.840; Ord. No. 9786, § 1, 4-18-83; Ord. No. 10010, § 1, 12-5-83; Ord.
13243, § 1, 2-3-92; Ord. No. 16851, § 1, 4-2-01)