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Water & Wastewater Billing

Water and Wastewater charges are billed bi-monthly.

The minimum bi-monthly charge for water and wastewater is $99.48, which includes 10 cubic meters of water using the standard residential 5/8" meter.

Please make all cheques payable to “The Blue Mountains.”
Our mailing address is 32 Mill Street, PO Box 310, Thornbury, ON N0H 2P0.

Water rates did not increase in 2018.

Wastewater rates increased by 2% in 2018.

Please remember to keep your water and wastewater bills for your records. Re-prints are $2.00 per bill.

Have you changed your address? Ensure that we have the correct mailing address on file by completing the Change of Address Form and return it to the Town via email, fax at 519-599-2474, or mail it to Finance - First Floor, 32 Mill Street, PO Box 310, Thornbury, ON, N0H 2P0. If you have sold your property, please call to arrange a meter reading at 519-599-3131 ext 223.

Want to go paperless? Sign up for eBilling to have your Water and/or Wastewater Bill delivered to your inbox. To change the email address we have on file, please re-register your account.

Want to set up automatic payments? Complete our Pre-Authorized Payment Plan Form (PAP) and submit it with a void cheque.

Please see the 2018 Water and Wastewater Rates for a detailed list of rates. Water and Wastewater charges are billed bi-monthly.

On February 12, 2018 Council passed By-law 2018-7 for Water and Wastewater Rates

Water rates did not increase in 2018.

Wastewater rates increased by 2% in 2018. A 2% wastewater increase for a standard residential household that is serviced by wastewater would see a $6.00 yearly increase, if using a residential 5/8 inch water meter and using about 30 cubic meters of water every two months.

The Town remains committed to its Water Financial Plan, our long range strategy to help us identify the cost of having safe and sufficient water supply for our Town. This includes a plan for the repair or replacement of aging water infrastructure.

Some frequently asked questions regarding Water and Wastewater Rates are listed below.

Why is my water bill suddenly very high?

It could be due to higher water consumption as a result of:

  • A change in household (more people, visitors).
  • New appliances (lawn sprinklers, water-cooled air conditioner, heating system).
  • You may have some plumbing problems or leaks. To check for leaks, locate the “low flow indicator” – a small red triangle on your water meter. Make sure no water is running, and then check to see if the indicator is spinning. If it is, water is flowing through the meter indicating a leak somewhere. The homeowner is responsible for all internal plumbing leaks

Why are The Blue Mountains water and wastewater rates higher than the rates in many other municipalities?

  • The Blue Mountains' long, thin and stretched out water distribution and sewage collection systems require more pumping stations, reservoirs and appurtenances. This increases the cost of maintaining the service.
  • There are numerous ground elevation changes throughout the Town’s system as well. With respect to the Town’s water system, every 20 metres of vertical rise results in a new pressure zone, leading to higher operating and maintenance costs. For sanitary sewer purposes, more kilometres of pipe per unit results in the need for more pumping stations.
  • Much of the Town’s water and wastewater system is installed in rock, increasing the capital costs significantly, and forcing more pumping stations to be installed. This leads to higher operational costs.
  • The Town has a long shoreline and low urban density. This means that the Town constructs more kilometres of pipe per benefiting property than most other municipalities. More pipes in the ground means higher costs to put pipe in the ground, and higher operational costs to flow the water from the Water Treatment Plant to water users.
  • The Town’s source, Georgian Bay, is a clean and reliable resource for drinking water. However, surface water sources do cost more per litre to treat than groundwater sources. This is because groundwater is not subject to the same level of contaminants as surface water. More possible contaminants result in a more complex and costly treatment process.
  • All of the costs associated for water and wastewater must be recovered from the users that are benefitting from the service.

Water certificate requests are $60.00.

Send your request and cheque/money order payable to The Blue Mountains to:

Town of The Blue Mountains
Main Floor - Finance
32 Mill Street, PO Box 310
Thornbury ON, N0H 2P0.

You can receive your water and/or wastewater bill electronically through email. Please note that the form should be filled out only once for each Account for which you wish to receive your bills electronically.

To sign up for eBilling, please complete the eBilling Signup Form. If you wish to change your e-mail address, please re-register your account. If at any time you wish to unsubscribe from eBilling, please email us and include your utility account number.

Billing has started for any property owner with an unconnected vacant lot fronting municipal water and/or wastewater services. These bills are sent out twice a year.

The 2018 rate for vacant lots is $17.43 per month for water and $14.73 per month for wastewater.

Some frequently asked questions regarding this Infrastructure Renewal Fee are listed below.

Why did I receive a bill when I am not connected to water and/or wastewater?

When infrastructure for water and wastewater are installed, it has to be designed:

  • To accommodate all potential future homes that may at some point be built on properties  along the length of the system; and
  • To allow all homes along the length of the system to easily connect to the water and wastewater systems as they are built.

Every property is treated equally as the water and wastewater system is built. In other words, water and wastewater systems have to be built so that any and all buildable lots can connect to the system.  The system cannot be built “one lot at a time” by adding capacity to the system “as properties are built upon.”

The Infrastructure Renewal Fee ensures that every lot that the system had to be built to potentially service contributes to the future cost of replacing the system when needed.

How is the rate calculated?

The Infrastructure Renewal Fee is calculated using the annual costs associated for infrastructure replacement. Debt financing (the principal and interest payable on the amount borrowed to build the system), capital costs (the costs to build new or replace assets) and contributions to the asset replacement reserve funds (money the Municipality is setting aside to rebuild or replace the system) are considered infrastructure replacement costs.

Costs resulting from water use or the amount of water used are not included in the fee, since currently a vacant lot is not a water consumer.

Do all connected users pay this fee as well?

The fee is for the replacement of water and wastewater infrastructure and is therefore charged equally to all connected and unconnected water and wastewater users.

How often will I receive a bill?

The utility bills for unconnected vacant lots will be sent semi-annually and will include 6 months’ worth of fees on each bill.

How much will my bill be?

The current Vacant Lot Fee is $17.43 per month for water and $14.73 per month for wastewater. For example, if you are able to connect to both water and wastewater, your bill for 6 months will be $192.96 ($17.43 x 6 for water plus $14.73 x 6 for wastewater).

What are my property taxes used for?

The property tax levy cannot be used to pay for water and wastewater expenses. Property taxes are used to pay for items not related to utilities such as roads, garbage pickup, fire and police. Water and wastewater expenses must be paid separately, because not everyone has water and wastewater lines in their community.

What will the funds be used for?

The funds will be used for the replacement of water and wastewater infrastructure only. The funds will be held in two reserve funds;

  1. the Water Asset Replacement Reserve Fund; and
  2. the Wastewater Asset Replacement Reserve Fund.

These Reserve Funds will earn interest and are reported on annually.

Why is the fee not based on lot size?

After careful consideration and study, Council feels that the fairest methodology for calculating charges related to the expansion of water and wastewater systems to new areas is by using a “per unit” methodology, with an individual “lot” being the “unit”.

Please make all cheques payable to “The Blue Mountains.”

Our mailing address is 32 Mill Street, PO Box 310, Thornbury, ON N0H 1R0.

In Person

At the ‘Finance’ Reception Desk on the Main Floor at Town Hall, located at 32 Mill Street, Thornbury.
Office Hours are Monday to Friday, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm.

Direct Debit is accepted. Please not that Credit Cards are not accepted. There is a box marked ‘After Hours Mail’ outside the east doors where you can drop cheque/money order payments.

By Mail

Send your cheque/money order payable to The Blue Mountains to:
Town of The Blue Mountains
Main Floor - Finance
32 Mill Street, PO Box 310
Thornbury, ON N0H 2P0.

Please include payment stub, or indicate the account number on the payment. Please mail your cheque to Town Hall early enough to be received before the deadline. Cheques may be post-dated to ensure timely payment processing.

By Courier

Send your payment to:
Town of The Blue Mountains
Main Floor - Finance
32 Mill Street
Thornbury, ON N0H 2P0.

At Your Bank

Ensure the Teller selects Blue Mountains Town of (Utilities) and not your Tax account. There is a ‘Transfer Fee’ of $20 charged for incorrect payment per instance, after the first instance.

Internet

To set up, search ‘Payees’ for Blue Mountains Town of (Utilities). When entering your account number, use all 12 digits, leaving out the decimal. 
Please note that if you have your taxes and water/wastewater set up for payment via internet, always ensure to select your ‘Utilities’ account when making water and/or wastewater payments and not your ‘Tax’ account. There is a ‘Transfer Fee’ of $20 charged for incorrect payment per instance after the first instance.

Pre-Authorized Payment Plan

The Blue Mountains offers a Pre-Authorized Payment Plan for water and/or wastewater customers. If you wish to enroll in the Pre-Authorized Payment Plan, please complete and return the Water and Wastewater Pre-Authorized Payment Form, along with a void cheque.

Please note: Property owners currently enrolled in the Pre-Authorized Payment Plan for Taxes must still complete a Water and Wastewater Pre-Authorized Payment Plan Form. Please include a “Void” cheque with this form.

Convenience and Savings!

Pre-authorized payments have many benefits:

  • No cheques to write out
  • Save on postage and transportation
  • You don’t have to keep track of due dates or payments
  • Avoid paying a penalty for missing a due date

Six Payments

There are six due dates each year (February, April, June, August, October and December) and the amount due will be automatically withdrawn from your bank account.

Are you eligible?

  • If you own property in The Blue Mountains, you can take advantage of this convenient program.
  • You can enroll any or all of your properties in this program.
  • Your initial application is valid as long as you own the property and for as long as you want to stay in the plan. You do not have to reapply every year.

Withdrawal or Information Change

If you have information changes, sell your property, or want to withdraw from the Pre- Authorized Payment Plan, please notify us in person or writing by the 1st day of the month.


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Contacts

Water & Wastewater Billing
519-599-3131 x223

Documents

By-laws