Marana Water News: A Little Background on Billing

Marana Water billed 7,042 water customers and 2,778 sewer customers in March. These customers are broken down into two billing cycles each with a unique billing period and due date. This week, we highlight all the steps it takes to create these monthly bills, and point out some key dates as a reminder for our customers.

Our systems are organized into two periods, Cycle 1 and Cycle 2, for tracking and billing purposes. The Palo Verde, Saguaro Bloom, Airline/Lambert, and Continental Reserve neighborhoods make up Cycle 1. These customers have a billing period from the first of the month through the last business day of the month. Their due date is the 19th of every month. Our second billing cycle, Cycle 2, includes all of the northern parts of Marana, the Twin Peaks and I-10 area, and the Hartman/Cortaro neighborhoods. With a due date of the 8th of every month, these customers billing cycle is the 20th of one month through the 20th of the following month, or as close as possible. Please refer to the graphic to the right for a reminder of when bills are due. We strive to have our billing periods be as consistent as possible at 30 days. Sometimes due to weekends and holidays the periods can be a little longer or shorter.

There are many steps involved in the billing procedures, all of which are done by our Water Billing Specialists--the same staff that answer customer questions take payments, and process new services. These are some of the hardest working employees in the department. Beginning the day prior to our meter reading, we process all the accounts that have closed in the previous month. This generates the final bills and any refund credits due to our customers. It is vital we get forwarding address information so we can be sure to get any deposit refunds back to our customers.

Our customer service field operator will read the water meters for each billing cycle. Cycle 1 is about 2,500 meters while Cycle 2 is 4,500 customers. Once the reads are all collected there are several reviews done to ensure quality and consistency in the reads. At this point, we identify our customers who have used more than 10,000 gallons than the previous month to call for a potential leak notification. We review usage patterns, any missing reads, or reads that are very unusual. Once all these have been checked, we will create the charges, call all the high use customers, and send the bills out for mailing. We typically are able to complete the entire process in one and a half working days. Our professional staff of billing specialists are here in the office to review any questions our customers have with their bills.

We hope this week’s story will shed some light on how the billing process works and allow our customers some lead time to prepare for billing payment each month. Please call our office with any questions about the statement, charges or water use.

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