Borough of Netcong, NJ
Morris County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Netcong 10-11-1988, which ordinance superseded former Ch. 88, Water, adopted as follows: Art. I, 7-11-1972 as Ch. 88, Art. I, of the 1972 Code, as amended; Art. II, 10-12-1976, as amended; and Art. III, 6-11-1985. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Excavations in streets — See Ch. 153, Art. I.
Sewers and sewage systems — See Ch. 238 and Ch. 295.
Water systems — See Ch. 307.

§ 276-1 Applicability.

The provisions of this chapter apply to water service furnished by the Borough of Netcong, hereinafter referred to as the "borough," both within and outside borough limits.

§ 276-2 Control and use of water supply system.

The public water supply and distribution system of the Borough of Netcong and the organization, administration and operation thereof shall be under the exclusive control and jurisdiction of the Mayor and Council, except that the Water Board or duly licensed operator of said water supply and distribution shall have the authority to declare a water emergency, as provided in § 276-14, and take such other emergency action as may be necessary to protect and preserve the system.

§ 276-3 Definitions.

Whenever the following words, clauses or terms are used in this chapter, they shall be construed to mean and shall have the meanings herein defined, unless otherwise specifically stated:
CORPORATION COCK
A valve installed at a water main to control the flow of water in a water service connection.
CURB BOX
A vertical pipe at a curb to permit the operation of a curb stop valve.
CURB STOP VALVE
A valve installed at the curb end of a water service connection.
CUSTOMER SERVICE LINE
The length of pipe, lying generally outside the street right-of-way, which connects the curb box to the building to be served with water.
DEPARTMENT
The Water Department of the Borough of Netcong.
DWELLING UNIT
A building or portion thereof designed for residential occupancy by a single family.
FIRE STANDBY SERVICE
A service connection that terminates in a privately owned hydrant and/or in an internally installed sprinkler system and which is not in any way connected to any fixtures other than those designed for fire protection. Where any service connection shall serve two or more sprinklered buildings, the system in each building shall be considered a separate fire standby service.
MAIN or MAINS
Either in the singular or plural, all pipes, other than pipes forming part of service connections, used for conveying water to or distributing water in the borough.
OWNER
Any person, persons, corporation, partnership or association owning, or any mortgagee in possession of, any property or premises which is or can be respectively supplied with water, or his or her agent.
PERSON
Any individual, firm, association, partnership or corporation or any group of two or more of them.
QUARTER
Any period of consecutive days equal in time to three months or 1/4 of a year. A quarter need not be three calendar months nor a calendar quarter.
SERVICE CONNECTION
A pipe or pipes connected to the main and extending into privately or publicly owned property or premises for supplying water thereto.
TAPPING or MAKING A TAP
The physical act of breaking into a main to install a service connection.
WATER METER
A device for measuring the quantity of water passing through a pipe at a given location.
WATER TAP INSTALLATION
The curb box and the portion of the service connection which connects the box to the main and lies generally within the street right-of-way.

§ 276-4 Compliance required.

Water shall not be furnished to any premises unless the owner complies with all the terms and conditions, rules and regulations herein set forth, together with any amendments and supplements which may hereafter be made.

§ 276-5 Rates.

[Amended 5-14-1991; 4-13-2000 by Ord. No. 2000-4; 6-14-2001 by Ord. No. 2001-11; 4-14-2005 by Ord. No. 2005-4; 11-9-2010 by Ord. No. 2010-10; 7-14-2016 by Ord. No. 2016-10]
A. 
Residential water charges.
(1) 
Commencing in the third quarter of 2016, for all houses and apartments, the metered rate per quarter shall be $74.25 for the first 12,000 gallons used and $4.50 per each additional 1,000 gallons used in excess of the first 12,000 gallons.
(2) 
Commencing in the first quarter of 2018, for all houses and apartments, the metered rate per quarter shall be $85.50 for the first 12,000 gallons used and $5.50 per each additional 1,000 gallons used in excess of the first 12,000 gallons.
(3) 
Commencing in the first quarter of 2020 and thereafter, for all houses and apartments, the metered rate per quarter shall be $87 for the first 12,000 gallons used and $5.75 per each additional 1,000 gallons used in excess of the first 12,000 gallons.
(4) 
Where more than one dwelling unit is served by one meter, the aforesaid quarterly minimum charges and rates based upon gallons used shall apply to each dwelling unit.
B. 
Commercial water charges.
(1) 
Five-eighths-inch to one-inch line. For all commercial uses supplied by a five-eighths-inch to a one-inch water line, the metered rate per quarter shall be as follows:
(a) 
Commencing in the third quarter of 2016, $81.50 for the first 12,000 gallons used and $4.75 per each additional 1,000 gallons used in excess of the first 12,000 gallons.
(b) 
Commencing in the first quarter of 2018, $94 for the first 12,000 gallons used and $5.50 per each additional 1,000 gallons used in excess of the first 12,000 gallons.
(c) 
Commencing in the first quarter of 2020 and thereafter, $95.75 for the first 12,000 gallons used and $5.75 per each additional 1,000 gallons used in excess of the first 12,000 gallons.
(2) 
One-and-one-fourth-inch to one-and-one-half-inch line. For all commercial uses supplied by a one-and-one-fourth-inch to a one-and-one-half-inch line, the metered rate per quarter shall be as follows:
(a) 
Commencing in the third quarter of 2016, $204 for the first 28,000 gallons used and $4.75 per each additional 1,000 gallons used in excess of the first 28,000 gallons.
(b) 
Commencing in the first quarter of 2018, $234.75 for the first 28,000 gallons used and $5.80 per each additional 1,000 gallons used in excess of the first 28,000 gallons.
(c) 
Commencing in the first quarter of 2020 and thereafter, $239.25 for the first 28,000 gallons used and $6 per each additional 1,000 gallons used in excess of the first 28,000 gallons.
(3) 
Two-inch line. For all commercial uses supplied by a two-inch water line, the metered rate per quarter shall be as follows:
(a) 
Commencing in the third quarter of 2016, $336.25 for the first 40,000 gallons used and $4.50 per each additional 1,000 gallons used in excess of the first 40,000 gallons.
(b) 
Commencing in the first quarter of 2018, $386.75 for the first 40,000 gallons used and $5.75 per each additional 1,000 gallons used in excess of the first 40,000 gallons.
(c) 
Commencing in the first quarter of 2020 and thereafter, $394.50 for the first 40,000 gallons used and $6 per each additional 1,000 gallons used in excess of the first 40,000 gallons.
(4) 
Minimum water charge. Notwithstanding the above, there shall be a minimum charge for all commercial uses, as follows:
Sizes of Line
(inches)
Minimum Quarterly Charge
2016 (3Q and 4Q) and 2017
2018 and 2019
2020 and thereafter
5/8 to 1
$81.50
$85.50
$87
1 1/4 to 1 1/2
$204
$234.75
$239.25
2
$336.25
$386.75
$394.50
C. 
Fire standby service. For each fire standby service the quarterly charge per year shall be as follows:
Size of Building in Square Feet
Quarterly Charge
2016 and 2017
2018 and 2019
2020 and thereafter
Less than 10,000
$216.50
$248.75
$253.75
More than 10,000
$432.75
$497.50
$507.50
D. 
Additional charges. The hourly rate to be charged for water service repair or maintenance shall be $75 per hour, per employee.

§ 276-6 Billing.

[Amended 2-8-2007 by Ord. No. 2007-1]
A. 
Billing for water consumption. Bills for water consumption, except for fire standby service as provided in § 276-5C, shall be billed on March 1, June 1, September 1 and December 1 of each year.
B. 
Regardless of the date on which service is connected or disconnected, the minimum rate as established in § 276-5 shall apply and shall be apportioned for each month or part thereof from the date service is connected to the first billing date or from the last billing date to the day service is discontinued, on the basis of calendar quarters.

§ 276-7 Payment due date; interest; notice; service charges.

[Amended 2-8-2007 by Ord. No. 2007-1]
A. 
Water and related bills are payable not later than the 15th day of the month in which the same become due.
B. 
All bills overdue more than 15 days will be subject to interest at the rate of 8% per annum on the first $1,500 and at the rate of 18% per annum on the balance, to be calculated as of the billing date.
C. 
If any water bill or any other charge imposed under this chapter is not paid within 30 days from the billing date and two previous billing quarters remain unpaid, the Borough shall notify by certified mail, return receipt requested, the owner of the premises (as appears from the tax duplicate) and the person to whom such bill was rendered or charge made, if different from the owner of such arrearage. The notice shall state that if such bill or charge is not paid within 15 days of the date of such notice, the water service shall be shut off. No service shut off for nonpayment shall be turned on or reconnected until all billings for water and all other charges have been paid in full, including a turn-on charge of $25. Such payments and such turn-ons shall only be accepted and made during normal business hours.
D. 
If payment of any water or other related charge billed is not made as required by this chapter, and said charge(s) shall remain in arrears for six months, the Water Collector shall file with the Tax Collector a statement showing such arrearages. From the time of such filing, the water or other charge shall be a lien upon the real estate to which the water was furnished and in connection with which the charges were incurred to the same extent as taxes are a lien upon real estate in a municipality and shall be collected and enforced by the same officers and in the same amount as liens for taxes.

§ 276-8 Meter readings.

A. 
Meter readings are final. All meter readings shall be final and conclusive unless objection thereto in writing is filed with the borough within 15 days after the billing date of the disputed bill and meter reading.
B. 
Unscheduled meter readings. At the request of an owner, and upon 48 hours notice, the borough may perform an unscheduled meter reading. There shall be a charge of $50 for any such unscheduled meter reading. If such an owner desires to terminate service as of the date of said unscheduled meter reading, charges shall be prorated in accordance with § 276-6B.
[Amended 7-14-2016 by Ord. No. 2016-10]

§ 276-9 Application for service.

A. 
Owner to make application. Applications for water service shall be made by the owner of the property to be served, on forms prescribed by the borough. The owner may request that bills for water and other charges be rendered to an agent, a tenant or other occupant of the premises; provided, however, that the owner shall remain liable for the payment of all water and other related charges.
B. 
Change of ownership. Upon change of ownership of property being served with water, a new application for service shall be made by the new owner. Such service of water shall be considered new service, notwithstanding that actual water service may not have been physically disconnected or shut off in connection with the transfer of ownership.

§ 276-10 Service connection; fees.

A. 
Standard service connection. The tapping of the main shall be done and the corporation stop and the service lines from the main to the curb and the curb stop to the curb box shall be furnished and installed by the Water Department or its agent for a service connection fee of $2,875 which shall be payable in advance. This charge includes the furnishing and installation of a five-eighths-inch water meter, unmetered water for a reasonable period during construction, an inspection of the customer service line and any road resurfacing required in connection with the tap installation. The owner shall install the line from the curb stop to the structure in accordance with § 276-11.
[Amended 7-14-2016 by Ord. No. 2016-10]
B. 
Extraordinary service connection.
(1) 
The charge established by Subsection A hereinabove shall apply to all service connections constructed in earth excavations up to a maximum depth of eight feet where open-cut road crossings are permitted by the applicable agency having jurisdiction over the road being excavated. In cases where rock excavation is encountered or where additional material is deemed needed by the Water Superintendent or where the depth of excavation exceeds eight feet or where open-cut of roadway is not permitted or where some other extraordinary condition or circumstance is encountered, the applicant shall be responsible for the payment of any additional costs resulting therefrom. In addition, if a larger tap or corporation stop is required and/or the distance from the main to the curb exceeds 30 feet, the cost of said additional material and labor shall be paid by the owner.
(2) 
If a meter larger than five-eighths-inch is required, the owner shall be responsible for furnishing and installing such meter. Any such meter must be approved by the Water Department prior to installation.
C. 
Capacity charge in lieu of standard service connection. A capacity charge of $1,380 shall be paid per each residential unit newly constructed and connected to a water distribution system not presently connected to the municipal system and installed at the developer's sole cost and expense, or to a water supply and distribution system not presently connected to the municipal system and installed at the developer's sole cost and expense.
[Amended 7-14-2016 by Ord. No. 2016-10]
D. 
Each meter constitutes a separate water connection. For the purposes of this section, each meter installed shall be considered to be a separate water service connection.
E. 
Winter service connections. In the winter months, water taps shall only be installed at the discretion of the Water Superintendent, depending on weather conditions.

§ 276-11 Customer service line installation.

A. 
The customer service line shall be laid in a manner approved by the borough. After a ditch has been dug, the pipe shall not be covered until the borough has inspected and approved the laying of such pipe and all connections thereto and has issued a certificate of approval in writing. The installer shall take all precautions to cover by plank or otherwise all excavations made in sidewalks for the laying of the service line and shall not leave on the sidewalk or in the public highway any stones or piles of dirt or other refuse. All customer service lines must have a covering of at least four feet of approved backfill with a minimum of six inches of sand over and six inches of sand under the pipe. All customer service lines shall be a minimum of five feet distant from any sewer line and their installation shall comply in all respects with the applicable State Plumbing Code.
B. 
All new installations of customer service lines and all repairs and renewals of the same shall be made at the expense of the owner. All pipes and fittings used in making such installations, repairs and renewals shall be copper or such other material as shall be approved by the borough.

§ 276-12 Meter installation.

A. 
A stop cock or gate or ball valve shall be placed in the service line on the street side of and near the meter, and a stop and waste cock or valve shall be installed on the opposite side thereof. A suitable check valve shall be placed between the stop and waste cock or valve and the meter, if required by the borough. If a check valve is required, a safety valve shall be inserted at some convenient point in the house piping to relieve excess pressure due to hot water.
B. 
All water delivered in the borough shall be measured by water meters approved by the Water Department. Five-eighths-inch meters shall be provided and installed by the borough. After installation, all five-eighths-inch meters shall remain the property of the borough. If larger meters are desired, they shall be furnished and installed by the property owner. Upon installation, meters two inches or larger in size shall remain the property of the property owner. Those meters larger than 5/8 of an inch up to two inches in size shall become the property of the borough upon installation.
[Amended 2-13-1990]
C. 
All premises being supplied water by the Water Department without meters having first been installed shall, upon notice by the Department, have a five-eighths-inch meter installed by the Water Department or have a larger meter approved by the Water Department installed satisfactory to the Water Department.
D. 
The owner of any house or building which is tapped into the borough water main conveying water supplied by the Borough is hereby required to permit the installation of a meter yoke in the service line. Such yoke shall be provided by the Borough and installed by the owner at his own cost and expense.
E. 
Where a yoke is already installed, the property owner shall provide the Borough access to the yoke for repair and/or installation of the meter.
F. 
The location of each meter shall be approved by the Borough. It must be accessible at all reasonable hours for the purpose of inspection, repair and reading and located in the cellar or first floor near the point of entrance of the customer service line and in a clean, dry and safe place not subject to great variations in temperature.

§ 276-13 Meter regulations.

A. 
Damages.
[Amended 5-13-1999 by Ord. No. 99-7]
(1) 
Except for ordinary wear, all damages to a water meter, including frost damage, shall be the responsibility of the property owner. The Superintendent of Public Works shall determine whether damage to the water meter was caused by negligence or ordinary wear. Immediately upon discovery, the owner of metered premises shall notify the Water Department of any damage to or failure of a meter. Only a designated employee or agent of the Borough may remove or repair a meter.
(2) 
The fee for repairing a meter or the safety wire on a meter shall be $15 plus the Borough's labor costs. If the meter must be replaced, the customer shall pay all replacement costs incurred by the Borough, as determined by the Superintendent of Public Works.
B. 
Seals. All meters shall be sealed by an authorized official. No person other than an agent or employee of the Borough shall break, remove, tamper with or alter any seal placed upon any meter.
C. 
Bypass. No bypass around a meter shall be permitted.
D. 
Fire standby service. No meter is required on a fire standby service.
E. 
Testing and calibration.
[Amended 2-13-1990]
(1) 
Any property owner desiring to have a Borough-owned meter tested may apply to the Borough therefor, paying a fee of $10 for each such test. If the test discloses that the meter is registering incorrectly, said fee shall be returned to the owner. A meter registering within 3%, plus or minus, of the correct value shall be considered to be registering correctly.
(2) 
All meters two inches or larger in size shall be tested annually between May 1 and June 1 of each year, at the property owner's expense, by a qualified inspection agency approved by the Water Board. Prior to testing of meters two inches or larger in size, the property owner shall obtain a list of approved inspection agencies from the Water Board. A copy of the inspection agency's report shall be submitted to the Water Board within 15 days after the inspection. Any corrections shall be made by and at the expense of the property owner within 30 days of the inspection and as required by the Water Board.
[Amended 5-13-1999 by Ord. No. 99-7]
(3) 
Should the inspection reveal that calibration of the meter is necessary, the property owner shall provide at least 48 hours' notice to the Water Board and the Water Department prior to removal of the meter for calibration, so that a final reading may be obtained by the Water Department. No meter shall be removed without a final reading having first been taken. Any meter that is removed for calibration must be reinstalled within 30 days of the removal. A calibration report detailing the causes of the required calibration and any corrections made shall be submitted to the Water Board and the Water Department by the property owner within 30 days of the removal of the meter.

§ 276-14 Water emergencies; right of entry.

A. 
If, in the opinion of the Water Board or licensed operator of the Borough water supply distribution system, an emergency exists due to a lack of necessary water to supply the needs of the water customers of the Borough, said Water Board or licensed operator may restrict such uses of water as they shall deem unessential for the duration of such an emergency. All customers shall be notified of any such restrictions as much in advance as is possible and practicable under the particular circumstances.
B. 
Should the Water Board or licensed operator determine a water emergency exists and should the potable water system of the Borough or any part of said system be required to be shut down to effect emergency repairs, a bona fide attempt shall be made to notify all businesses and residences that may be affected thereby during such emergency. However, should such notification be deemed impossible due to the nature of the emergency, no business or residential customer shall have any claim for recovery of any financial losses which may have occurred during said emergency due to such shutdown.
C. 
In the case of a break in a line or other emergency situation affecting the water supply and distribution system which has occurred on private property and requires immediate attention and repair by the Borough, a Borough employee or duly designated agent shall have the right to enter upon such private property and make such repair. The Borough may charge the property owner for the costs of such repairs or maintenance at the hourly rates established in § 276-5 of this chapter plus any materials and outside labor costs, if necessary.
[Amended 6-13-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-7]

§ 276-15 Leaks to be reported; repair.

A. 
When leaks occur in the service lines and pipes, prompt notice thereof shall be given to the Water Department. Repairs in Borough lines shall be made by the Borough and repairs in the customer service line shall be made under the supervision and direction of the Borough.
B. 
The borough shall not be held accountable for any damage which may result from leaks, burst pipes or from any other causes in any building, and the owner shall pay for all water passing through the meter in cases where the Department has not been notified of any leaks or burst pipes and has not had sufficient time to shut the same off.

§ 276-16 Fire hydrants.

[Amended 7-14-2016 by Ord. No. 2016-10]
A. 
No person shall take water from any public fire hydrant, hose plug, street washer or fountain pipe, except for fire-fighting purposes or use by the Fire Department. No public fire hydrant shall be used for sprinkling streets or lawns, flushing sewers or gutters or for any other purpose not connected with the fighting of fire, except with the approval of the Water Superintendent. It shall be unlawful to cover, hide or obstruct any fire hydrant with shrubs, fences or other objects.
B. 
Where fire hydrants are located outside of the municipal boundaries and provide service to other jurisdictions, the annual rental fee to be charged to that jurisdiction shall be $100.

§ 276-17 Failure of water supply.

The borough is not responsible for any damage caused by a failure to deliver water to any premises as a result of any cause whatsoever.

§ 276-18 Excess pressure.

The borough will not be responsible for injury to persons or property because of excessive and/or low pressure. It shall be each owner's responsibility to install whatever pressure regulators he may deem necessary for the protection of his plumbing, connections and of persons at or near the same.

§ 276-19 Prohibited acts.

A. 
No person shall take, use or consume any water through the water supply and distribution system of the Borough unless the same shall first pass through a water meter installed and maintained in accordance with this chapter unless the use of unmetered water has been expressly authorized by ordinance or by resolution of the Borough Council.
B. 
No person, except an agent or employee of the borough, shall tap or connect to any water main or insert a stopcock therein.
C. 
No person, except an agent or employee of the borough, shall turn the service connection at the curb on or off.
D. 
No person shall keep any explosives, acids or other substances likely to injure or damage any portion of the water supply and distribution system, within 50 feet thereof.
E. 
No person, except an agent or employee of the borough, shall enter upon any property owned or controlled by the borough and used by the borough in connection with the water supply and distribution system; nor shall any person tear down, break, destroy or tamper with any of the structures, machinery, mains, valves or any other part or portion of said system.
F. 
No interconnection shall be made between the water supply and distribution system of the borough and any other water supply and distribution system of any nature whatsoever, including private wells, except as may be authorized by the borough.
G. 
No connections of a service pipe with the distribution system, no alterations, additions or extensions in or to any service pipe and no devices for drawing water shall be made or attached to the distribution system, except as authorized and approved by the borough.
H. 
No attachment from which water can be drawn shall be connected to a service pipe between the water main and the water meter.
I. 
No person shall use or consume water after the service connection has been turned off by the borough or its agents, employees or representatives.
J. 
As required and requested by the Water Board or Water Department, within 30 days of the request, each property owner shall submit as-built construction details of any service connection, customer service line or any other pipes, valves or other appurtenances connected to the water distribution system of the Borough of Netcong showing their accurate location. Any other information requested or required by the Water Board or Water Department regarding the accurate location of any appurtenance or connection to the water distribution system, the maintenance of any facilities, pipes or other appurtenances connected to the water distribution system or repairs of such facilities shall be submitted within 30 days of the request of the Water Board or Water Department. A failure to respond to any such request shall be a violation of this chapter.
[Added 2-13-1990]
K. 
The Water Board or Water Department shall have the right to require any property owner to take specified steps to repair or maintain any service connections, pipes, facilities or other appurtenances connected to the water distribution system of the Borough of Netcong as may be deemed necessary in the discretion of the Water Board or Water Department for the proper and efficient functioning of said system. Any such required repair or maintenance action shall be completed to the satisfaction of the Water Board within 30 days of the request. A failure to respond to any such request or to schedule an inspection of the repair by the Water Board shall be a violation of this chapter.
[Added 2-13-1990]

§ 276-20 Discontinuance of service; reinstatement; notice.

A. 
A customer's service may be discontinued for any of the following reasons:
(1) 
For the use of water for any other premises or purposes than those described in the application.
(2) 
Under any flat-rate service, for addition of fixtures or increases in the use made of water without notice to the borough.
(3) 
For willful waste of water through improper or imperfect pipes, fixtures or otherwise.
(4) 
For failure to maintain in good order any connections, service lines or fixtures being supplied water.
(5) 
For abandonment of the premises.
(6) 
For inability of the representative of the borough to gain access to the premises served at reasonable hours for purposes of inspection or for reading, caring for or removing meters, provided that reasonable request for such access has been given.
(7) 
For molesting any service pipe, meter, curb stop, box, seal or other appliance of the Water Department.
(8) 
For fraudulent representation by the owner of the premises or anyone acting as his agent or on his behalf.
(9) 
For persistent violation of the rules and regulations of the Water Department or a violation of any of the provisions of this chapter.
B. 
Any service which is so discontinued shall not be reinstated unless and until the violation has been corrected or, if the violation consists of improper or excessive use of water, unless and until the borough has received assurance, in form satisfactory to it, that such use will not be continued.
C. 
The borough will not discontinue the water service in accordance with the provisions of this section without first providing notice of such intended action. The notice required by this subsection shall be given in person, by telephone or by mailing a copy thereof, by both regular and certified mail, return receipt requested, to the last known address of the owner as the same appears on the books and records of the borough. Any mailed notice shall be conclusively deemed to have been given on the date of mailing. The notice required by this subsection shall be given at least 72 hours before any action by the borough to discontinue water service.

§ 276-21 Violations and penalties.

[Amended 8-10-2006 by Ord. No. 2006-20]
Any person, firm, or corporation violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall be subject to such penalties as are provided for in Article I of Chapter 1 of the Code of the Borough of Netcong.