Oct 26, 2020 : The North Carolina Housing Opportunities and Prevention of Evictions (HOPE) program assists with housing and/or utility payments
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The North Carolina Housing Opportunities and Prevention of Evictions (HOPE) program assists with housing and/or utility payments
Oct 26, 2020
The NC Housing Opportunities and Prevention of Evictions (HOPE) program may be available to assist with your housing and/or utility payments. The HOPE program provides assistance to eligible low-and-moderate income renters experiencing financial hardship due to the pandemic by making direct payments to landlords and utility companies. People can apply for help by calling 2-1-1 or going to nc211.org/hope.
Oct 26, 2020 : ** Aqua N.C. customers: Visit NCwaterquality.com for information and updates
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** Aqua N.C. customers: Visit NCwaterquality.com for information and updates
Oct 26, 2020
Aqua N.C. customers: Visit NCwaterquality.com for water quality information and updates.
Aug 12, 2020 : Aqua N.C. Customers: Order Lifting Disconnection Moratorium and Allowing Collection of Arrearages Pursuant to Special Repayment Plans
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Aqua N.C. Customers: Order Lifting Disconnection Moratorium and Allowing Collection of Arrearages Pursuant to Special Repayment Plans
Aug 12, 2020
Dear Aqua Customer:
To ease the financial impacts of the recent COVID-19 crisis and assure access to our essential services, Aqua stopped disconnecting water service for non-payment and the assessment of late fees in March 2020. We also provided flexible payment arrangements plans for those in need.
As government leaders announce plans to reopen, workers are being called back to work and our communities are beginning to return to normal. Part of this return to normalcy includes the resumption of utilities’ need to collect debts for past service. The North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC) has notified Aqua that it may resume customer disconnections due to nonpayment for bills first rendered on or after September 1, 2020. Aqua intends to restart its collections and disconnection process as of this date and in accordance with the NCUC’s Order. A complete copy of the NCUC Order is located at https://www.ncuc.net/.
Customer accounts subject to disconnection after the effective date will be offered a payment arrangement plan of twelve months to repay their past due balances, including amounts incurred prior to Governor Cooper’s issuance of a state of emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- If you have a balance past due and would like to discuss your payment terms, please call us at 877-987-2782. Customer Service Representatives are available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m., to 5:00 p.m., or you can contact us at / in the customer service center drop-down menu.
- You can also manage your account and pay your bill on-line at AquaAmerica.com by clicking on the WaterSmart e-billing link.
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected many North Carolinians and created financial and emotional hardships. In addition to extended payment arrangements and a continued moratorium on utility late payment fees, 211.org may also be able to help. This free service can help you find local community agencies providing a wide range of assistance. Please visit https://www.211.org/ or dial 211 from your phone to start.
We are here for you in these unprecedented times. To request assistance, please call us at 877.987.2782 or visit: /customer-service-center/important-information.aspx
Aqua Customer Service
Read the full Order Lifting Disconnection Moratorium and Allowing Collection of Arrearages Pursuant to Special Repayment Plans. Below is an overview.
On March 10, 2020, Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order (EO) No. 116 declaring a State of Emergency in North Carolina to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus. The EO stated it was effective immediately and “shall remain in effect until rescinded.” EO No. 116 at § 25. To date, EO No. 116 remains in effect.
On March 16, 2020, Virginia Electric and Power Company, Inc., d/b/a Dominion Energy North Carolina (DENC) and Public Service Company of North Carolina, Inc. (PSNC, collectively the Dominion Utilities), filed a letter in Dockets Nos. E-22, Sub 583 and G-5, Sub 617 requesting expedited Commission approval to (1) suspend disconnection of electric and gas service of residential customers who are unable to pay their bills, (2) waive any late-payment charges incurred by a residential or commercial customer, (3) allow reconnection of customers who have recently been disconnected without assessment of a reconnection fee, and (4) use flexibility in applying other requirements for restoration of electric and gas services, including the guidelines for re-establishment of credit. Finally, the Dominion Utilities stated that “[a]s long as the State of Emergency exists in North Carolina the [Dominion Utilities’] actions referenced above will remain in force and effect or unless otherwise ordered by the Commission.” Dominion Energy’s Customer Response to COVID-19 and Request for Expedited Approval for the Companies to Waive Late-Payment and Reconnect Fees for its Customers at 2.
On March 18, 2020, the Commission issued an Order Granting Temporary Waivers of Specific Provisions of Commission Rules in Dockets Nos. E-22, Sub 583 and G-5, Sub 617 (Dominion Waiver Order) effective March 16, 2020, granting the Dominion Utilities the relief requested in their March 16, 2020 letter, including approving the requested suspension of residential customer electric and natural gas disconnections and the requested waivers of Commission rules, including waiver of late payment charges incurred by residential or commercial customers. The Dominion Waiver Order further authorized the Dominion Utilities to continue such suspensions and waivers, including the waiver of late payment charges, until the COVID-19 State of Emergency is declared to be over, or until otherwise ordered by the Commission.
On March 19, 2020, in response to EO No. 116, the Commission issued an Order Suspending Utility Disconnections for Nonpayment, Allowing Reconnection, and Waiving Certain Fees in Docket No. M-100, Sub 158 (Public Utility Waiver Order). The Public Utility Waiver Order required that “until the end of the State of Emergency or until further orders of the Commission,” all jurisdictional electric, natural gas, water, and wastewater public utilities immediately (1) cease customer disconnections for nonpayment of bills (Disconnection Moratorium), (2) waive the application of late fees for past due or delinquent payments (Late Fee Moratorium), and (3) provide appropriate notice to customers of these changes. Public Utility Waiver Order at 2. The Commission further suspended individual regulations and tariff provisions that prevent or condition reconnections of disconnected customers. Further, the Commission ordered:
At the end of the State of Emergency, customers having arrearages accrued during the State of Emergency shall be provided the opportunity to make a reasonable payment arrangement over no less than a six month period and shall not be charged any late fees for late payment for arrearages accrued during the State of Emergency.
Id. Finally, the Commission expressly held that “[n]o provision in this Order shall be construed as relieving a customer of their obligation to pay bills for receipt of any utility service covered by this Order.” Id.
Also on March 19, 2020, Duke Energy Carolinas, LLC (DEC), Duke Energy Progress, LLC (DEP), and Piedmont Natural Gas Company, Inc. (Piedmont, collectively the Duke Utilities), filed a letter in Docket Nos. E-2, Sub 1228, E-7, Sub 1236, and G-9, Sub 767 requesting Commission approval to (1) suspend as of March 13, 2020, the disconnection of electric and natural gas service to the Duke Utilities’ residential and non-residential customers who are unable to pay their bills, (2) waive for both residential and non-residential customers the application of late payment charges provided for in the Commission’s rules and the Duke Utilities’ rate schedules, (3) allow reconnection of residential and non-residential customers who had recently been disconnected, without assessment of a reconnection fee, (4) waive for both residential and non-residential customers the application of fees for checks returned due to insufficient funds, (5) waive for residential customers the transaction fees associated with the payment of electric and gas bills by credit card or debit card, and (6) use flexibility in applying other requirements for restoration of electric and gas services, including the guidelines for re-establishment of credit pursuant to Commission Rules R12-2 and R12-3.
On March 20, 2020, the Commission issued an Order Granting Additional Temporary Waivers of Specific Provisions of Commission Rules in Docket Nos. E-2, Sub 1228, E-7, Sub 1236, and G-9, Sub 767 (Duke Waiver Order) granting the Duke Utilities the relief requested in their March 19, 2020 letter that was in addition to the directives of the Public Utility Waiver Order, including but not limited to suspending disconnections of residential and non-residential customers effective March 13, 2020, and waiving late fees for both residential and non-residential customers. Further, the Duke Waiver Order stated:
Based on the foregoing, the Commission finds and concludes that the provisions of the Commission’s [Public Utility] Waiver Order shall apply to DEC, DEP and Piedmont, except as otherwise modified in this Order.
Duke Waiver Order at 2. There were no provisions in the Duke Waiver Order modifying the Public Utility Waiver Order with respect to the Duke Utilities except those approving the relief requested by them that was in addition to the directives of the Public Utility Waiver Order.
On March 31, 2020, Governor Cooper issued EO No. 124, in which he noted that the Commission had issued the Public Utility Waiver Order but that it applied to only some of the utilities providing service in the State. Therefore, Governor Cooper determined that it was “in the best interest of the people of North Carolina to enact, for all utilities, prohibitions and restrictions similar to and consistent with, the Commission’s March 19, 2020 Order.” EO No. 124 at 2 [pages unnumbered]. Executive Order No. 124 defined “Utility Service Providers” to include, among others, municipalities, cooperatives, and investor-owned utilities that provide electric, natural gas, water, or wastewater services to end-use residential customers. Id. at § 1(A)(1)-(2). In addition, EO No. 124 stated:
The restrictions placed on Utility Service Providers by this Section should, in cases of any ambiguity, be interpreted to be consistent with the restrictions imposed upon certain Utility Service Providers by the North Carolina Utilities Commission in its March 19, 2020 Order Suspending Utility Disconnections for Nonpayment, Allowing Reconnection, and Waiving Certain Fees, Docket M-2 [sic], Sub 158.
Id. at § 1(A)(3).
In addition, Section 1(C) of EO No. 124 stated:
[P]rovided, however, that Utility Service Providers subject to the Utilities Commission’s March 19, 2020 Order shall remain subject to the terms of that order after the terms of this Executive Order expires.
In pertinent part, EO No. 124 suspended disconnections of residential customers based on nonpayment, prohibited fees, charges, penalties, and interest on arrearages accumulated while EO No. 124 is in effect and directed that Utility Service Providers give customers an opportunity to make reasonable payment arrangements of at least six months in duration to pay off arrearages that accumulate during the effective period of EO No. 124. Further, EO No. 124 stated that the moratorium on disconnections would expire in 60 days unless suspended or rescinded by a subsequent EO. Id. at § 1(G). Finally, in pertinent part, EO No. 124 required public utilities to report implementation information weekly to the Commission. Id. at § 1(J).
On May 30, 2020, Governor Cooper issued EO No. 142, which extended the May 30, 2020 expiration date of EO No. 124 to midnight on July 29, 2020. In addition, EO No. 142 clarified that no late fees should be imposed on arrearages accumulated during the effective period of EO No. 142, that if a Utility Service Provider and a customer are unable to agree on the duration of the extended repayment arrangement on arrearages the default repayment period will be six months, and that the payoff period for arrearages should be calculated from the date EO No. 142 expires. EO No. 142 at § 2(C). Further, EO No. 142 stated that “Utility Service Providers subject to the Utilities Commission’s March 19, 2020 Order shall remain subject to the terms of any Utilities Commission order that may be in effect after this Executive Order expires.” Id. Finally, in pertinent part, EO No. 142 required public utilities to continue to report implementation information to the Commission on a monthly basis. Id. at § 2(E).
On July 10, 2020, the Duke Utilities filed their Petition for Clarification of the Expiration of the Commission’s Waiver Orders1(Petition), which states:
[T]he duration of the Waiver Orders is not expressly defined, although it appears to be linked to the duration of the State of Emergency. The expiration of the State of Emergency, however, is also currently undefined. In contrast, Executive Order No. 142 clearly defined an expiration date — July 29, 2020. . . . This leaves the customers of DEC, DEP, and Piedmont uncertain on when the [Duke Utilities] might transition to more normal operations, including resumption of delinquency procedures and certain fees.
Petition at 4-5. The Duke Utilities request that the Commission clarify the expiration date of its previous Waiver Orders concerning the suspension of disconnections of utility service for nonpayment, which orders were issued to address the adverse health and economic impacts experienced by utility customers as a result of the spread of the coronavirus. The Duke Utilities further posit that coordinating the expiration of the Commission’s Waiver Orders with the expected July 29, 2020 expiration of EO No. 142 would reduce customer confusion and place all North Carolina utility customers on similar footing.
In addition, the Duke Utilities state that if the Commission’s Waiver Orders expire at the same time as EO No.142 they will not immediately begin disconnections for nonpayment and, instead, will voluntarily establish a transition period of one billing cycle (30 days) after expiration before reinstating their billing and payment policies, and before reinstating reconnection and returned check fees. Finally, the Duke Utilities state that they intend to suspend fees for credit card or debit card transactions by residential customers for an additional two months after “the moratorium is lifted.”
Jul 02, 2020 : Aqua N.C. Customers: Order Approving Revised Customer Notices and Accepting Financial Undertaking
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Aqua N.C. Customers: Order Approving Revised Customer Notices and Accepting Financial Undertaking
Jul 02, 2020
On December 31, 2019, Aqua North Carolina, Inc. (Aqua or Company), filed an application with the Commission seeking authority to adjust and increase its rates for providing water and sewer utility service in all of its service areas in North Carolina (Application). Within its Application, Aqua notified the Commission of its intent to implement its proposed rates on a partial, temporary basis subject to refund, pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § 62-135, effective for service rendered on and after six months from January 30, 2020, or July 30, 2020.
On June 11, 2020, Aqua filed a motion requesting, among other things, approval of a financial undertaking and approval of Notices to Customers. On June 23, 2020, the Commission issued an order denying use of a revenue deferral mechanism, approving Aqua’s financial undertaking, and approving Aqua’s Notices to Customers noting that choice to exercise the remedy provided by N.C.G.S. § 62-135 belongs to the Company and is not determined by the Commission. Upon review of Aqua’s motion, the Commission found that Aqua had satisfied the statutory requirements necessary to place new rates into effect on a partial, temporary basis. subject to refund with interest at a rate of 10% per annum, effective July 30, 2020.
On July 1, 2020, Aqua filed a motion seeking Commission approval of revised Notices to Customers. In its motion Aqua seeks to implement partial, temporary rates under bond at a lower level than it previously requested and than was authorized in the Commission’s June 23, 2020 Order. Also on July 1, 2020, Aqua filed its executed Undertaking to Refund.
While N.C.G.S. § 62-135 affords the Company a remedy to address any financial hardship it perceives during the pendency of a general rate case proceeding, the choice to exercise the remedy belongs to the Company and is not determined by the Commission. The Commission finds that Aqua’s request for approval of revised Notices to Customers would result in lower partial, temporary rates than previously requested, and Aqua has satisfied the statutory requirements necessary to place new rates into effect on a partial, temporary basis, subject to refund with interest at a rate of 10% per annum, effective July 30, 2020. Therefore, the Commission finds good cause to approve the revised Notices to Customers attached to this Order as Appendices A and B and to accept Aqua’s executed Undertaking to Refund filed on July 1, 2020, in this docket.
IT IS, THEREFORE, ORDERED as follows:
1. That the Commission takes no position on whether the Company should or should not invoke the rates under bond mechanism authorized by statute;
2. That the revised Notices to Customers regarding Aqua’s request pursuant to N.C.G.S. 62-135 to place an increase in its rates and charges into effect in accordance with the schedules attached hereto as Appendices A and B be, and the same are hereby approved;
3. That should Aqua decide to implement rates under bond, the applicable Notices to Customers attached as Appendices A and B shall be mailed with sufficient postage or hand delivered by Aqua to the respective customers no later than
July 10, 2020; and that Aqua shall submit to the Commission the attached Certificate of Service properly signed and notarized no later than 20 days after the date of this Order;
4. That no rate or rates placed into effect pursuant to this notice shall result in an increase in more than 20% on any singe rate classification of the Company;
5. That Aqua shall be, and is hereby, obligated to refund to its customers any amount of temporary rates made effective on or after July 30, 2020, that are finally determined by the Commission to be excessive, plus 10% interest per annum, and to make any refunds in a manner consistent with any additional terms and conditions imposed by the Commission in subsequent orders; and
6. That Aqua’s executed Undertaking to Refund with interest, from the date that such rates are put into effect, any revenues in excess of those the Commission ultimately determines to be appropriate, filed by Aqua on July 1, 2020, in this docket be, and the same is hereby accepted.
- People Served
- Water Connections
- Wastewater Connections
- Water Treatment Facilities
- Wastewater Treatment Facilities
- Miles of Main
- Public Water Systems (PWSIDs)
Aqua North Carolina Service Territory
Learn more about our commitment to improving water quality for our customers: NCWaterQuality.com
Aqua North Carolina, an Essential Utilities Company, serves more than 250,000 residents in 51 counties. North Carolina customers can pay their Aqua water bill online through WaterSmart e-billing or any number of convenient ways to pay.
Aqua North Carolina Cross Connection Control Program
Learn more about the Cross Connection Control Program
Cross Connection Control Program FAQs
Learn more about GenX: GenX Information
Learn more about lead and drinking water: Lead Fact Sheet
Learn more about radium and groundwater: Radium Fact Sheet
Learn why Aqua flushes a water system: Flushing Fact Sheet
North Carolina Mandatory Drought Restrictions
Cold weather advisory: Preventing frozen pipes this winter.
For any questions or concerns relating to customer service, please call 877.987.2782
For any questions or concerns relating to customer service in North Carolina , please call our phone number: 877.987.2782.
Aqua North Carolina serves communities in the following counties: Alamance, Alexander, Alleghany, Ashe, Avery, Buncombe, Burke, Cabarrus, Carteret, Caswell, Catawba, Chatham, Cumberland, Davidson, Davie, Durham, Forsyth, Franklin, Gaston, Granville, Guilford, Henderson, Hoke, Iredell, Johnston, Lincoln, McDowell, Mecklenburg, Mitchell, Moore, Nash, New Hanover, Northampton, Onslow, Orange, Pender, Person, Polk, Randolph, Rockingham, Rowan, Rutherford, Stokes, Surry, Transylvania, Union, Vance, Wake, Warren, Watauga, Yadkin and Yancey.
Water Sources: Consolidated rock wells (more than 1,600) and aquifers. The Fayetteville area is served by the Black Creek Aquifer and the Wilmington area is served, in part, by the Castle Hayne Aquifer. In addition, Aqua North Carolina, purchases water from other utilities to resell to its customers.
Aqua North Carolina Leadership Team
Director of Operations
Environmental Compliance Director
Central Area Manager
Coastal Area Manager
Western Area Manager
Aqua North Carolina Business Development Water and Wastewater
C. Ruffin Poole, CRPoole@AquaAmerica.com, 919.653.6967
- North Carolina Utilities Commission
- Department of Environmental Quality, Division of Water Resources
Frequently Asked Questions
Have a question about Aqua America's North Carolina operations? We’ve compiled some frequently asked questions to help you learn about issues specific to your state such as hard water and drought. If you have a question not addressed here, you can reach us via the link at the bottom of this page.
Why is my water discolored, and what is Aqua doing to fix it?
- Please refer to this document, which discusses naturally occuring minerals in the groundwater.
Why is my water hard?
- Hardness is often a characteristic of groundwater and occurs naturally.
- As the water travels through the ground and enters the aquifer, minerals such as calcium and magnesium that are present in the bedrock dissolve into the water supply.
- These minerals that leach into the water give the water what is commonly called “hard” water. Other minerals that can cause hardness and discoloration issues are caused by iron and manganese.
What can I do to soften my water?
- Minerals often build up in home hot water heaters. The higher the temperature, the more likely these minerals are to build up in your hot water heater.
- Reduce the temperature of your hot water heater.
- Flush your hot water heater regularly.
- Purchase an in-home water softener.
How can I stop the staining that comes from my hard water?
- A product called Red B-Gone can be purchased from some local plumbing supply stores.
Why does my water smell like rotten eggs?
- Sulfates are a naturally occurring mineral in some areas of North Carolina.
- By themselves, sulfates are not a problem.
- However, when non-harmful, sulfur-reducing bacteria — which are also naturally present in the water — feed on the sulfates, it gives an odor to the water that is often said to smell like rotten eggs.
What is the drought status?
- In most cases, we have enough supply for reasonable use. However, some customers do not use water reasonably.
- The mandatory restrictions that impact all customers were mandated by the North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC).
How do you handle drought violators?
- The NCUC has charged Aqua with policing violators. If an Aqua employee witnesses a violation in the regular course of our business, we will engage the customer to make them aware of their action. Aqua will then send the customer a letter that gets copied to the NCUC. The letter informs the customer that if we witness the violation a second time, Aqua will ask the NCUC to allow us to turn off their service.
What are you doing to find more water sources?
- In most cases, we have adequate supply for reasonable demand according to the Department of Environmental Health, which equates to 400 gallons per day for a 12-hour day.
Who’s responsible for the maintenance of grinder pumps?
- In most cases, Aqua owns and maintains your grinder pump.
- You can help keep costs down by not putting things like grease, dental floss, kitty litter, etc., into sinks, toilets and drains.
North Carolina Leak Adjustment Form