The Osceola Water Works Department frequently receives questions regarding the Osceola utility bill. For new customers, it can be confusing since it holds a lot of information, and others may have trouble understanding what all is included and who is responsible for the different charges included. We would like to take a moment to try to answer your questions and ease your concerns about your Osceola Utility Bill.
- Why is my bill so expensive? Your utility bill includes more than just your water usage fees. Osceola Water Works is in charge of only the water portion of your utility bill. Osceola Water Works has an agreement with the City of Osceola to bill for sewer (SW), sewer surcharge (SS) and garbage services (GB) to keep all services on one monthly bill.
- How do I read my bill and information? While there is a lot of information included on your Osceola Utility bill, it can be read fairly easily. Each service is listed on its own line. The city’s charges are listed first, and include garbage collection, sewer services and sewer surcharge. The water service fee is listed last and is just that – your water usage fees. Each month, your water meter is read to determine the amount of water that has passed through the meter and the difference from the previous month is used to calculate usage. The cost is calculated using the current water rate table and the state-required sales tax on that usage fee is listed separately, to the right.
- What does “sewer surcharge” mean? The sewer surcharge portion of your utility bill is a flat rate that everyone connected to the sewer system is required to pay. The infrastructure needed to transport and treat wastewater is massive and the city collects the surcharge for maintenance and improvements to allow the sewer system to accommodate the usage of a growing community.
- What do you do with all our tax money? Osceola Water Works doesn’t receive any of your tax revenue. We are required by the State of Iowa to charge sales tax on water sales. The only portion of your payment the Water Works receives is based on water consumption and calculated from our current rate table. There have been only two rate increases since 2009.
- How can I pay my utility bill? Osceola Water Works offers many different options to pay your bill. The tried-and-true way to make a payment is by putting it in the mail, the after hours drop box, or in person at our offices at 208 West Jefferson Street. You can set up an automatic withdrawal on the 15th of each month, taking that task off your plate. Or you have the option to make your payment online at Osceola Bill Pay. There are no fees to pay online, but it can take two to three days for processing so you must pay no later than the 14th of the month to avoid late fees.