(a) The rates shall equal the cost of purchased water or sewer service (The usage rate charged by the provider shall equal the usage rate charged by the supplier.). A Commission-approved administrative fee not to exceed $3.75 may be added to the cost of purchased water and sewer service to compensate the provider for meter reading, billing, and collection. A provider whose schedule of rates and fees does not include a separate base charge to the lessee may request approval of a pass through of the base charge from the supplier to be included in the administrative fee resulting in a request for approval by the provider of a total monthly administrative fee greater than $3.75. With the exception of base charges approved before August 1, 2004, all charges other than the administrative fee shall be based on lessees' metered consumption of water. All sewer service shall be measured based on the amount of water metered. Metered consumption of water shall be determined by metered measurement of all water consumed by the lessee, and not by any partial measurement of water consumption (i.e., ratio utility billing system (RUBS) and hot water capture, cold water allocation (HWCCWA) are not allowed), except as permitted in G.S. 62-110(g)(1a) and Commission Rule R18-8).
(b) A provider of water or sewer service may track increases in the unit consumption rate charged by the supplier of such service, and may (subject to limitations imposed by Commission Rules) change its administrative fee, by filing with the Commission a notification of revised schedule of rates and fees. Every notification of revised schedule of rates and fees shall be in such form and detail as the Commission may prescribe and shall include (1) the current schedule of the unit consumption rates charged by the provider, (2) the schedule of unit consumption rates charged by the supplier to the provider that the provider proposes to pass through to the provider's lessees, (3) the schedule of the unit consumption rates proposed to be charged by the provider, (4) the current administrative fee charged by the provider, and, if applicable, (5) the administrative fee proposed to be charged by the provider. Any such notification of revised schedule of rates and fees shall be presumed valid and shall be allowed to become effective simultaneously with the increase in the unit consumption rate of the supplier upon 14 days' notice to the Commission, unless otherwise suspended or disapproved by Commission Order issued within 14 days after filing.
(c) Every request for approval of a monthly fixed administrative fee in excess of $3.75 shall include (1) the provider's current and proposed cost of meter reading, billing, and collection not to exceed the Commission-approved amount of $3.75, (2) the current or proposed base charge from the supplier, if applicable, (3) the total proposed monthly fixed administrative fee, and (4) the number of lessees to whom water or sewer service is provided. Any such request shall be suspended for a period of 30 days after filing.
(d) The provider may impose a returned check charge, not to exceed the maximum authorized by G.S. 25-3-506, for a check on which payment has been refused by the payor bank because of insufficient funds or because the lessee did not have an account at that bank.
(e) No provider shall charge or collect any greater or lesser compensation for the costs of providing water or sewer service than the rates approved by the Commission.
(NCUC Docket No. WR-100, Sub 5, 08/01/04, 01/20/05; NCUC Docket No. WR-100, Sub 7, 01/10/12; NCUC Docket No. WR-100, Sub 10, 04/04/2018.)