Coming this September, City of Elkhart will be launching a new online billing and payment service called FrontDesk. This will offer you greater flexibility to view and pay your utility bills online. In addition, you will have options to enroll in AutoPay and receive Electronic Notifications.
What does this mean if you currently already receive electronic bills or are enrolled in AutoPay with ACH?
You will need to log into FrontDesk and create a new account. You will be required to update your preferences and set up new AutoPay information. Because we value the security of your information and respect your privacy, we will not be transferring your payment information. Please be sure to create your FrontDesk account as soon as possible as your current AutoPay settings will be deactivated on November 30, 2022.
Important Information Addressing Water Issues in Town
As you all know, the city’s water quality is an issue. Fixing it has been a city council priority for some time now. The solution is the new Water Treatment Plant project that the city recently awarded a contract to begin construction this summer with an estimated end-date of the summer of2025.
The Water Treatment Plant project will mitigate two major issues. One, clear up the orange tinted water and, two, provide added capacity in the form of a new well and bigger and better filters. The reason why many of you are experiencing orange water is that our current filters are at capacity and cannot eliminate all the iron that is getting through. It is the iron that is causing the water discoloration when there is a sudden and significant stirring of the water lines such as a fire or flushing the hydrants. The water is safe and after running your faucet for several minutes it should clear it up. Again, the new treatment plant will help mitigate this issue.
However, because the project will take time before completion, we may be seeing more discoloration of the water due to our wells pumping at full capacity to supply our growing community’s water needs and the filters not being able to keep up.
In the meantime, to address the issue, we may need to reduce our water use in town to keep the discoloration to a minimum. The less water we use, the less water needs to go through our filters, meaning we will be able to keep more iron from getting into the system.
There are two big uses of water in town – watering yards and the two concrete plants. City staff will be meeting with the concrete plants to discuss ways they can reduce their water use in town. Regarding watering yards, starting July 1st we will be implementing a VOLUNTARY even / odd yard watering schedule. If your address is an even number, please only water your yard on even number days. Likewise, if your address is an odd number, please only water your yard on odd numbered days.
Not only does this help save water, but it is also better for your yard. Watering your yard too much does not allow the roots to grow to their full potential making your yard susceptible to weeds or damage from hot weather or insects. Also, watering in the morning or evening is significantly better than watering during the heat of the day. In addition, if it is windy, you should not water since most of the water never actually reaches your lawn –it just evaporates before hitting the ground.
Again, until the new treatment plant is up and running, this voluntary measure will be implemented to save water which, in turn, should lower the chances of orange tinted water getting past our current filters. New sod is exempt from this program since it is important that new sod receive water every day.
We hope to continue this lawn watering program as a voluntary measure for as long as we can. Next year, as we add more houses, we may have to make it a requirement. Thank you for your cooperation.