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Jemison changes utility policy for rental properties

By STEVEN CALHOUN/Staff Writer

The Jemison City Council amended an ordinance pertaining to utilities for rental properties in its May 15 meeting. The amended ordinance requires that all utility accounts remain in the legal landowner’s name for all rental properties.

The reason for this, according to city officials, was that renters were leaving without paying their bills. The unpaid bills were forcing the city to pick up the costs.

“There are a lot of rental properties in Jemison, and renters are notorious for leaving town and not paying the last couple months of their water bill,” city administrator Shannon Welch said.

According to Welch, the availability fee for new customers of the water service was not changed.

During the meeting, the council also approved a bid on updating the technology in the front office. The system has not been updated since 2002. The new computer system will improve efficiency and bring the city up to date on technological trends, according to city clerk Sylvia Singleton.

Southern Software was awarded the bid at a cost of $40,820. This price includes three years of support.