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Frequently Asked Questions

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Frequently Asked Questions2021-03-05T11:08:17-05:00

Browse the options below to answers to frequently asked questions at Columbus City Utilities.

Don’t see your question here? Feel free to contact us.

What does CCU fix if it breaks?2021-01-28T11:08:05-05:00

CCU maintains and makes any necessary repairs to the water main, the service line leading up to the meter pit, and the meter pit, including the meter. The line leading from the customer’s side of the meter is considered the customer’s responsibility to maintain and any water usage recorded on the meter will be billed accordingly. (A sewer credit can sometimes be arranged if it is shown a leak caused large quantities of water to pass through the meter and not enter the sewer system).

Unlike water lines, the customer assumes a responsibility for the building lateral when they connect. The customer is therefore responsible for every part of the sanitary sewer system that serves only his site. This can sometimes mean the homeowner must make repairs located within the public right of way. In these cases, care must be taken in selecting contractors capable of performing this type of work. The homeowner should check with the City Engineer before final hiring of a contractor.

What services does CCU provide?2021-01-28T11:14:00-05:00

Water Services
Connection fees paid by the customer cover the costs associated with the installation of a water meter and pit. This means the location of the pit may have already been determined at the time of your application. The CCU Distribution Department will tap the public main and extend a service line to the approximate property line and will set a meter pit and meter. It remains your responsibility to install and connect to the pit and to the building system. During busy construction seasons it may take up to two weeks or more to install the service.

Sewer Services
When sewer lines are installed, building wyes or laterals are installed for buildings to connect to. These wyes are typically 6″ in diameter and located at a depth no greater than five to six feet below the surface. Newer wyes may have a section of pipe protruding above the ground surface to facilitate location. When sewer tap permit is obtained, the Engineering department will work with the excavator to locate the sewer lateral. This is done through a combination of methods using first record, or “as built,” measurements provided to the department, and then magnetic location techniques. If these other methods prove ineffective, the wye can be located using television line inspection equipment. The excavator hired by the customer is responsible for the final location of the lateral and connection of the building system to the public sewer. Before the excavator backfills the trench they should call the Engineering department for a final inspection.

Who should I hire to do my part?
CCU does not make recommendations for, or against, private contractors or vendors. It is a requirement that excavators who obtain sewer tap permits provide us with a proof of insurance so we may be protected against any liability due to any negligence.

Am I eligible to receive services from CCU?2021-01-28T11:14:26-05:00

If you live within the city limits of Columbus, Indiana, you are eligible to receive service from Columbus City Utilities (CCU).

CCU is a municipally owned and operated utility. It has certain procedures for citizens of the City to gain services and different procedures for those who live outside the corporate limits.

If you live outside of the City of Columbus, you should first go to the Bartholomew County planning office and make an application for service with them.

How much are the connection fees?2021-01-28T11:15:02-05:00

For water services, a normal residential service (5/8” X 3/4” meter) will cost $1,100.00.  This includes the cost of the meter pit or vault, the meter, as well as labor, and material costs.  If your property already has a meter pit or vault available, the cost for a normal residential service is only $500.00, which covers the cost of the meter.  For larger services, the actual cost for labor and materials are calculated and billed to the customer on an individual basis.

For commercial water services, the builder is responsible for providing everything but the actual tap to the public main.  CCU will make the tap and bill the customer for all labor and material costs.

For a sewer tap, the cost is $70.00, which is a reimbursement to CCU for the cost of inspecting the sewer connection to the main.

Please note, while the application for services must be made by the eventual customer, the excavator is responsible for obtaining the sewer tap permit and making the actual connection.

What are assessments?2017-11-07T09:24:45-05:00

Assessments are fees charges by CCU to assist in the payment for the lines adjacent to your property.  If your property has been serviced by CCU in the past, assessments may not be required.  The assessment rates are multiplied by the property dimensions that abuts, or lies next to, the water and sewer lines.  These rates are set by local ordinance and cannot be modified.

Water Assessment Rate: $9.30 per abutting foot

Sewer Assessment Rate: $13.10 per abutting foot

Many newly created parcels belong to developments where the water and sewer lines have been built by a private contractor, and not by CCU.  In this instance, there are no assessments charged to the customer.

How do I sign up for water and sewer services?2021-01-28T11:16:20-05:00
Start Service Online Form

Signing up for services is simple. If you are the owner of the property, you can sign up here, send a fax, or visit our office. Please have the name(s) that you want associated with the account, a current phone number, the address of the service location, and the date you want services turned on in your name readily available to make signing up easier. A deposit is not required unless your services are interrupted due to delinquent payment.

If you are renting the property, you can sign up here, or visit our office.  You will be asked to provide a government-issued photo ID, a copy of your lease signed by the landlord, and a deposit of $105.00.

Will I receive an adjustment for a water leak?2017-11-07T09:23:01-05:00

If there is a leak on the customer’s side of the meter, a sewer adjustment will be considered. For consideration of an adjustment, documentation of the repair must be provided to CCU prior to any adjustment being made on an account.

Please note, not all leaks are eligible for an adjustment. Items such as leaking or running toilet and faucets, outside water spigots left running, etc. are not eligible as the water is still entering the sewer system.

What is Summer Sewer Allowance?2021-09-02T09:51:49-04:00

Summer Sewer Allowance (SSA) is defined by local ordinance which specified all residential customers will receive a sewer adjustment for the months of June through September.  In general, sewer charges are based upon your water consumption.  However, during SSA, your sewer charges are based on your average water consumption for the months of February through April.  This allows for customers to sprinkle their lawn, water flowers, etc. without paying for an increase in sewer charges since the water consumed is not going down the sewer drain.  SSA will begin after your meter is read in June and you receive your bill in July.  During SSA, all customers receiving the allowance are not eligible for additional sewer adjustments caused by a leak or pool fill.

For our customers who prefer to water early or late in the season, we offer irrigation meters for purchasing.   If you receive your monthly bill via email, you will receive earlier notification of when your SSA begins. If you currently receive a paper bill, but would like to begin receiving your bill via email, please contact our office and our friendly staff would be more than happy to assist you.

SSA ends when your meter is read in September and is reflected on the October bill.

Do I get an adjustment for filling a pool?2017-11-07T09:23:17-05:00

CCU does offer one pool-fill adjustment annually each spring to our customers. To receive this adjustment, call or email our office.

Send your name, service location, and account number, along with the dates you filled your pool.