FAQs - Billing

Frequently Asked Billing Questions (How bills are figured, water usage, payment assistance)

Your monthly sewer rate is dependent on the kind of system that serves your home or business. Each bill includes a monthly base service availability fee or base rate plus a volume charge for every 1,000 gallons of water used. If your home or business is served by a pressurized system, there is a surcharge added to the base service fee and volume charge to cover the additional costs of operating these types of systems.

View more information on current rates and rate schedules >

Rather than charge a deposit, the sewer district bills one month in advance. The first bill covers service from your connect date up to and including one month beyond your billing date. You are being billed for a partial month plus at least one full month of service. (please note "# days" on the billing statement.) Your next bill will cover one month only.

If you should move within the sewer district and have a credit on your account it will be transferred to the new account. If you should move out of the sewer district, you will get a refund of any credit on your account.

Since the sewer district does not know what your household’s average usage will be, your first bill is based on a county-wide average of 5,000 gallons of water per month. Four months after moving into a new home or business, if you call the sewer district, we will obtain your actual average water usage from your water provider. Your bill will then be adjusted back to your connect date or a maximum of six months. You must call us and request a water usage review to receive a credit if your average water usage is less than 5,000 gallons per month.

Your water usage is determined by your water provider. The water provider reads the water meter at your home or business and shares the information with the sewer district. The sewer district receives this information on an annual basis or at the customer's request. You can check your average water usage by looking at your Boone Electric bill.

There are several water providers in Boone county. We have provided an area map that can help you identify your water provider.

Download a map of water district territories >

The sewer district conducts an annual water usage update. The water usage or volume charge portion of your bill will be adjusted each year to reflect your current average water usage. Each spring your water supplier provides us with your actual water usage for January, February and March. We use the winter months so we are not charging you for outdoor usage like watering your lawn or washing your car. These three months are averaged, and this figure is applied to the volume charge portion of your billing from June of one year until May of the next.

For some places, a three-month winter average is not a fair representation of the user's average monthly water usage, such as golf courses, schools, etc. If a home or business was obviously not occupied during January, February and March, we substitute a different month's usage or use an annual average.

There are two times during the year when your sewer bill might change.

In January, the sewer district may adjust the rates to meet the needs of the next year's operating budget and capital improvements program.

In June, your sewer bill might increase or decrease depending on whether your average water usage increases or decreases.

Customers with established account history are not typically reviewed except at the annual review time each year. However, if your water usage changes substantially during the 12-month cycle, please notify us. We will review your current water usage upon your request. Adjustments are made on a case-by-case basis.

The policy of the sewer district is to bill the base service availability fee on all homes, rental units and businesses connected to the sewer district's sewer system regardless of whether the property is occupied or not. When a property is vacant, the landowner will be billed the monthly base service availability fee. We do not add a volume charge to the billing. Please call the office if we are charging you for water usage on a vacant rental unit, home or business.

There are three main reasons for higher sewer bills: high overhead, a mandated capital improvements program and lack of government grant funds.

The sewer district operates and maintains 22 facilities spread over many miles. Each facility must be monitored, and each incurs material, utility and labor costs. Other sewer utilities, the city of Columbia, for example, benefit from having an integrated collection system that drains into one major treatment plant.

Secondly, the sewer district must complete a $21 million capital improvements program by 2019 in order to meet stricter water quality standards. The increase in debt is resulting in significant increases in rates.

And third, the sewer district was unable to take advantage of federal grants that the water districts obtained to help cover the initial costs of constructing the water supply systems.

If you experience a water leak, contact your water provider and contact the sewer district. Let us know when the leak started and when you had it fixed. If the leak is during the winter months, usage records from before or after the leak may be used to figure the water usage average that will be applied to your sewer bill. Sewer charges during the leak period depend on the circumstances. Adjustments will be determined on a case by case basis.

A leaky faucet or a running toilet uses many, many gallons of water and inflates your water and sewer bills.

The public service commission has great instructions on how to check for water leaks >

A customer using a well for their water source is typically a non-metered water source. The amount charged will be based on the 5,000 gallon county-wide average.

The property owner pays the sewer bill if there is more than one home or business connected to a single water meter. The owner pays for all units on one bill. The billing will include the base service fee times the number of units on the water meter plus the volume charge applied to the average usage of the water meter.

If you cannot pay on the due date and need to talk to us about a payment arrangement, please call our office at 573-443-2774.

No, the sewer district does not have an assistance program at this time. There are agencies that might be able to help with your sewer bill if you qualify. Call the office at 573-443-2774 for more information.

If you do not pay your bill and you do not participate in a payment plan, the sewer district will ask your water provider to shut your water off. If the water is shut off, there will be a disconnect fee and reconnect fee added to your account.

If you still have a question, you may contact a staff member by using the e-mail contact form.