The ordinance pertaining to procedure and fees concerning calls to free frozen water lines will be reviewed by Knox Water Superintendent Todd Gardner with recommendations to be considered by the Knox Board of Public Works.
Gardner told the board Wednesday morning that there needs to be a higher fee associated with multiple calls to a residence experiencing a frozen water line. He said he was called to the same homes on several occasions on the same matter during the winter and the fee doesn’t cover the excessive calls. He commented that he would talk to the homeowners and tell them to leave their water drip to avoid the problem but they refused. He heard people comment that it’s cheaper for the water department to come out and fix the problem than it is to leave the water drip – which isn’t the case, according to Gardner. The water department adjusted bills to encourage residents to leave the water drip to prevent frozen pipes.
He suggested raising the fee per call to help deter the behavior. He noted that some communities have revised similar ordinances and have gone to an extreme in terms of a fee to charge, but Gardner isn’t willing to go that far. Gardner said he will look to see what is reasonable to cover labor and time for frozen water line calls.