STPUD Meeting held |

STPUD Meeting held

Colin Hupp, Tahoe Daily Tribune

South Tahoe Public Utility District customers who don’t pay their bills won’t have to face the utility’s board anymore unless they want to.

STPUD voted Thursday 4-1 to make the disconnecting procedure a staff level process, saving some postage costs at the same time.

Non-paying customers go through a six-step process, beginning with their monthly bill and ending with a notice to appear before the board. STPUD is the only utility at the lake that involves the board with disconnections, according to Dennis Cocking, public information officer.

“We have far and away the most lenient shut-off policy of any utility in the basin,” Cocking said.

Cocking explained that the district takes longer to shut off delinquent accounts than other utilities because water is a more essential utility than electricity or natural gas.

STPUD staff argued that the process requires almost $600 per month in postage for certified mail.

Any customer with a dispute still has the option to bring his or her problem to the board, but staff will handle the day-to-day process of disconnection. The staff will readdress the board for approval of an amendment to the administrative code.

The board also elected a president and vice president for 2002. Duane Wallace will remain president for the coming year, and James Jones will take over as vice president.

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