Utility Billing FAQs

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What are my payment options?

The City accepts cash, check, money orders, ACH transfer, and a credit card with proper identification.

In person/drive-thru:  Monday - Friday  8:00 am - 4:00 pm

By phone:  1-844-219-7880

Online:  www.baytown.org (Online Services)

Automatic Bank Draft

Night drop

Mail:   PO Box 301460  Dallas, TX 75303-1460

Can I pay my bill at any other location?

Yes.  The Check Cashing & More booth inside the Food Town located at 1700 Decker Drive.

When am I charged a $35.00 delinquent fee?

The $35.00 delinquent fee is automatically generated and charged, if the past due amount is not paid in the Utility Billing office before 4 p.m. on the notice for non-payment due date.

What if I cannot pay my bill? Is there a place in Baytown that will provide assistance?

Yes.  Please contact one of the following offices.

Baytown Resource & Assistance Center at (281) 424-5752

Harris County Social Services at (281) 422-8564

When payments are mailed, paid by phone, or paid online, when is the payment applied to my account?

Once the funds are physically received in the Utility Billing office, which generally takes 1-3 days depending on the method used.  We encourage you not to use these methods if you have received a delinquent disconnect notice.

When can I make a payment arrangement?

At any time authorized by Utility Billing prior to your payment due date.  Once services have been disconnected, a payment arrangement is not available.  All payment arrangements must meet eligibility requirements.

What will I need to pay if my water is disconnected for non-payment?

The past due amount plus a $35.00 delinquent fee.  If all outstanding charges/fees are paid in the Utility Billing office before 2:00 p.m., the water will be reconnected the same day.  If payment is made after 2:00 p.m., water will be restored the next business day.

Do you send a notice before water is disconnected for non-payment?

Yes.  The Utility Billing office sends a notice of non-payment in the form of a letter once the account is past due and at least eight days prior to the proposed termination date.  The letter states the date by which payment must e made to avoid service interruption.

Is there a charge for transfer of service?

Yes.  There is a $25.00 service charge to transfer service and the bill must be paid to date.

Why is my bill so high?

A leak can cause higher usage also seasonal usage such as lawn watering, children's wading pools, filling pools, additional laundry, and washing automobiles.  Also,  a misread or defective meter can cause a high bill.  Your options in case of a leak: Perform self leak test, request a meter re-read ($10.00 charge), or request a meter test ($25.00 charge).  We encourage you to notify us immediately

What determines the amount on my utility water bill?

This is determined by water usage recorded on your individual water meter, which is read monthly.  The number of occupants of the home, the size of the home, and the size of the lawn are some of the possible factors that may or may not apply.  The meter tells us exact usage.

When will I get my deposit back?

When the account is closed, the deposit is applied toward payment of the final billing.  Any credit balance is refunded to the customer by check after the final bill has been processed.

How much is the deposit?

If you own the property, the deposit is $50.00 per unit.  If you are renting/leasing, the deposit is $200.00 per unit.  Business/commercial deposits are calculated based on comparable business use applied to current rates.  There is also a $30.00 service fee per meter.

What is the MDUS fee on my bill?

The MDUS fee stands for Municipal Drainage Utility System.  Please contact the Health Department Storm Water Division at (281) 420-5384 for more information.

Do you charge a late charge?

Yes.  The late charges are 10% of the water, sewer, garbage, and MDUS charges. 

To avoid late charges, payment must be received in the Utility Billing office by 4 p.m. on the due date.

Payments left in the night drop after 4 p.m. on the due date are considered late and will have a late fee assessed.  Payments made using Official Payments are posted the next business day when funds are received and therefore are considered late.

Is my payment posted to my account the same day it is received?

Payments received in the Utility Billing office before 4 p.m. Monday - Friday are posted the same day received.  Payments placed in the night drop box or paid by phone are posted the next business day.

Do you offer payments by bank draft?

Yes.  To receive an application, please contact the Utility Billing office at (281) 420-6515 or go to Related Forms & Documents.

Do you accept credit cards by internet or phone?

Yes.  Mastercard, Visa, and Discover credit cards.

Why are the payments mailed to a post office box in Dallas?

The City has a contract with JP Morgan Chase Bank in Dallas to process payments through our lock box.

What do I need to do to start new water service?

Bring proper documentation and identification showing you are the owner or the property or a lease/rental agreeemnt if you are renting the property.  A deposit and a conection fee is due at the time you submit your application request for service.  The City provides next business day service.  Go to Related Forms & Documents to print an application.

How do you figure the sewer charge?

Residential sewer charges are based on the customer's monthly water consumption with a cap of 12,000 gallons per month.  Commercial sewer charges are based on the customer's monthly water consumption with no cap.

Is my water meter read each month?

Yes.  Your water meter is read electronically, by radio frequency, each month.  The City installed an Automated Meter Reading (AMR) system, which allows readings to be transmitted through a Meter Interface Unit (MIU) installed in the meter box lid.  The transmission is received and stored by a special "drive-by" computer located in the Meter Technician's vehicle.

How is the meter read?

Readings are obtained electronically with a special "drive-by" computer, which picks up the readings emitted by radio frequency through a Meter Interface Unit (MIU).  Customers are billed in thousands of gallons so not all dials are used in calculating the bill.  The last two digits on the right are dropped when entering the reading for billing, i.e. 6 4 7 4 1 3 is read as 6474.  The previous reading is subtracted from the current reading to calculate the amount of water used between readings.

How can they read my meter when its full of water?

With the implementation of Automated Meter Reading (AMR), readins can be obtained even if the meter box is full of water.  The ProRead registers are sealed and transmit through a Meter Interface Unit (MIU) located in the meter box lid.

How can they read my meter when the grass has grown over it?

Readings are obtained electronically with a special "drive-by" computer, which picks up the readings emitted by radio frequency through a Meter Interface Unit (MIU).  Grass does not prevent the transmission of the signal.

Where does our water come from?

Baytown Area Water Authority (BAWA), a surface water treatment facility which receives ther raw water from the City of Houston.

Is the water tested?

Yes.  BAWA tests for quality control 24 hours a day.  They have 94 sampling points, per month, throughout the City of Baytown.  The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ formerly TNRCC) also conducts tests periodically.  BAWA was the fourth plant out of over 500 treatment plants in Texas to receive the Texas Optimization Program (TOP) status.  BAWA goes above and beyond the minimum limits set by TCEQ.

Where is the Utility Billing office located?

2505 Market Street, Baytown, TX 77520

 

When is the Utility Billing office open?

Monday - Friday 8 a.m. - 4 p.m., except for designated holidays which will be posted prior to the closing.

Do you have a drive-thru window?

 Yes.  The drive-thru window is located on the East side of the Utility Billing office.  Hours are 8am - 4pm Monday - Friday.

Do you have a night deposit box?

Yes.  The night deposit box is located just past the drive-thru window on the East side of the Utility Billing office.  Payments placed in the night deposit box are posted the next business day.

What is your fax number:?

(281) 420-6514

What is the mailing address for payments?

CITY OF BAYTOWN

PO BOX 301460

DALLAS, TX 75303-1460

Can I look up my utility billing account on this website?

Yes.   You can click on the Utility Billing Accounts tab and enter your account information.

Do you accept credit cards in the office?

Yes.  Mastercard, Visa, and Discover credit cards (with valid ID).

How do I check for a leak?

Turn off all indoor and outdoor faucets and water operable appliances.  Go to your meter and open the black lid.  You may need a flashlight to wake your meter.  Shine the flashlight on the meter.  If a small faucet with a drip of water appears, you have a leak. 

What are the most common causes of a leak?

Dripping faucets, leaking joints, and running toilets.  Toilet leaks are the hardest to detect.  Sometimes it takes months before you can hear a toilet leaking.