Category Archives: My Water

Additional Pre-Covid Billing Operations to Resume in January 2023

With the new year, there are a few notable changes coming to Charlotte Water (CLTWater). CLTWater has slowly been returning to pre-Covid billing operations, and some of these processes have already been implemented. Beginning January 2023, customers can expect disconnection and reconnection fees ($17 each) to resume.  Also in January, late fees, which are 1.5% of past-due charges, will begin and will appear on February bills.

Charlotte Water continues to look for ways to help customers who need help with their water bills get connected to resources. At the beginning of the pandemic, CLTWater policies were temporarily changed or suspended.  As financial aid programs, CARES Act funding and City grants became available, CLTWater worked closely with community partners like Mecklenburg County Department of Social Services (DSS), Housing and Neighborhood Services, and local non-profits community groups such as DreamKey Partners, Crisis Assistance Ministries and Commonwealth Charlotte, to connect thousands of customers with financial aid assistance.

One such financial assistance program was the Low-Income Household Water Assistance Program (LIHWAP). This federal program was designed specifically for customers who were in danger of having their water service disconnected due to outstanding balances. To better help residents, CLTWater and DSS met regularly and worked intensely to streamline the process of receiving federal funding and distributing the aid directly to customer accounts who qualified. CLTWater was the only utility in the state to auto-match customers with LIHWAP financial assistance.

By implementing this process, and because of the successful partnership with DSS, thousands of Charlotte-Mecklenburg area residents received financial assistance. In just the first round of funding, CLTWater and DSS allocated more than $1.3 million to CLTWater customers, approximately 19% of all LIHWAP funds distributed statewide. The number of outstanding or delinquent CLTWater accounts at risk of disconnection dropped by the thousands, and more federal funding is expected.

Today, CLTWater and DSS representatives continue to meet weekly to keep the process running smoothing, discussing everything from how people are learning about different aid programs, how many accounts are in need of aid, and the best communication strategies to keep the public informed. By working with DSS, CLTWater customers that are in need of water bill assistance can also learn about other utility assistance and housing assistance programs offered by DSS, such as Low Income Energy Assistance Program.

As CLTWater slowly moves back to normal operations, assistance is still available for customers in need of financial help during this time.  Visit CharlotteWater.org, or call 311, and get connected to a variety of resources. 

The Value of Water

Charlotte Water participated in the US Water Alliance’s national awareness campaign called Imagine a Day Without Water by producing a series of short videos that highlight the value of water in our region and the collaboration needed to plan for things like droughts, emergencies and even the extensive growth happening in Charlotte-Mecklenburg.

Our region has unique shared water resources, especially the vast network of lakes that are used for drinking water, energy and recreation.

We are grateful for the hard work of so many regional stakeholders that protect this precious resource. Visit our YouTube playlist, The Value of Water, to watch the full series, with the introductory video below.

Downed Tree Causes Large Wastewater Spill on Long Creek

March 15, 2022 – Charlotte Water crews responded to a broken 30-inch wastewater pipe. A fallen tree eroded the creek bank causing the 30-inch wastewater pipe to collapse. An estimated 484,075 gallons reached Long Creek. Crews quickly set up a barrier to contain the spill and temporary above-ground pipes to pump the community’s wastewater around the broken pipe.

This spill does not affect drinking water.

How You Can Help

This spill was caused by weather and creek bank erosion but most spills are caused by blockages. You can help reduce blockages and spills.

  • Toss in the trash: paper towels, wipes, hair, cotton swabs, feminine products, dental floss, coffee grounds, and excess food.
  • Toss in the toilet: only toilet paper.
  • Kitchen sink: soap suds, small amounts of foods from plate, and liquids (no fats, oils, or grease).
  • Take to a full-service recycling center: used and expired oils and grease.

Suspect A Sewage Spill? Call 311 or 704-336-7600.

Charlotte Water rapid response crews operate 24 hours-a-day.

Charlotte Water crews maintain more than 4,475 miles of wastewater pipe. Charges from monthly water bills fund preventative maintenance, emergency response, and the safe daily delivery of more than 91 million gallons of wastewater to treatment plants, where wastewater is treated to high water quality standards.

Utility Scam Awareness Day

Many electric, water, and natural gas customers throughout the country are being targeted by impostor utility scams each day. Scammers typically use phone, in-person, and online tactics to target customers. One of the most common types of utility scams involves customers receiving unsolicited telephone, electronic, or in-person communications from an individual claiming to be a utility company representative. The scammer warns that the customer’s electric, water, or natural gas service will be disconnected or shut off if the customer fails to make an immediate payment—typically using a reloadable prepaid debit card or other non-traceable form of payment. Scammers often use valid-looking phone numbers, graphics, uniforms, and other forms of fraudulent identification.

Common scam tactics include:
  • Threat to disconnect: Scammers may aggressively tell a customer their utility bill is past due, and service will be disconnected—usually within an hour—if a payment is not made.
  • Request for immediate payment: Scammers might instruct a customer to purchase a prepaid card, cryptocurrency, or to send funds via a mobile app to make a bill payment.
  • Request for prepaid card or payment through certain mobile apps: Customers are instructed to pay with a prepaid debit card. The impostor asks for the prepaid card’s number, which grants instant access to the card’s funds. More recently, customers have also been instructed to send a payment through a mobile app. Charlotte Water currently does not accept payments through the Cash App, Venmo or Zelle apps. However, customers can make payments on Charlotte Water payment portal by visiting charlottewater.org.
  • Personal information: During the COVID-19 crisis, criminals are promising to mail refund checks for over-payments on their accounts if they can confirm their personal data, including birthdays and, in some cases, Social Security numbers.
Tips to Avoid Scams:
  • Protect your personal information: Charlotte Water will have your relevant personal and account information. Never provide or confirm personal information such as Social Security number or bank account information.
  • Take your time: If someone calls or appears saying you have to pay your bill immediately, tell them you would like to verify that they are a legitimate utility company. Call 311 or 704-336-7600 to verify the contact.
  • Always ask questions: Ask the person calling you or visiting you in person to provide you with your account number, your last payment amount, date of payment and his/her employee ID number. If he/she is a legitimate utility representative, this information will be readily accessible.
  • Don’t let them inside: Charlotte Water staff have no reason to enter your home. Meters are located outside.
  • Pay your utility only: Never make a utility bill payment to anyone calling you on the phone, coming to your door, texting you, or emailing you. Always call your utility company at the number provided on your bill. Charlotte Water (at the City of Charlotte) can be contacted by dialing 311 or 704-336-7600.

For more information visit utilitiesunited.org or charlottewater.org.