GWA eyes May 15 deadline for disconnection of delinquent water accounts

GWA Badger meter (PNC file photo)

The Guam Waterworks Authority has set May 15, 2021, as the cut-off date for the disconnection of delinquent water accounts.

GWA general manager Miguel Bordallo said it’s necessary for the utility to resume its disconnection policy because revenues have been down due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In addition, delinquent ratepayers were not making payment plans with GWA because they knew that they wouldn’t be disconnected.

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“GWA feels it would be good to start sooner rather than later. You know, we don’t want to delay too much so we’re proposing May 15th. That gives us two months to do extensive outreach,” Bordallo said during the last CCU meeting on GWA.

He added that GWA has made considerable effort to provide alternatives to its customers, including contactless payment methods, drive-through window payment service, and deferred payments including payment plans.

Before the May 15 disconnection deadline, Bordallo said they will redouble their outreach efforts for payment plans with direct customer contact, including social media outreach and website information as well as contact forms on how to get into a payment plan with GWA.

GWA will also send direct mailers with information on how to pay bills and how to apply for payment plans within the next 60 days.

Consolidated Commission on Utilities Chairman Joey Duenas said it is important to stress during the communication outreach that if ratepayers have a payment plan and they are sticking to their payment plan, then they won’t be disconnected.

“As long as they stick to that payment plan and if they get assistance from some program and they can speed up their payment, you know, that’s great. But as long as they stick to that payment plan they will not be disconnected. However, if they violate the payment plan, they will be subject to disconnection on May 15,” Duenas said.