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City allows federal employees to postpone water bill payment

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In light of the ongoing partial governmental shutdown, the city of Roswell has implemented an interim program allowing federal employees to catch a break on their water bills during the current billing cycle.

A news release from the city stated that payment for these bills can be postponed for up to six months.

“During this period of time, these accounts will not be shut off for non-payment or receive any penalties for missed payments,” City Manager Joe Neeb said in an emailed statement to the Daily Record. “At the conclusion of the six-month period, the affected customers will be provided up to 12 months to bring their accounts current.”

A full implementation of the program is planned to be considered by the Roswell City Council’s Legal and/or Finance Committee later this month and early next month, according to the city manager. Neeb said the council may disagree with his position, halting the interim programs and “a catch-up process for those affected in this billing cycle will be implemented.”

Neeb said city customers wanting to participate in the program are required to provide identification and have their federal employee status verified. After this, interested customers can sign up at the Water Department at 415 N. Richardson Ave. and may call 624-6711 for information, as presented in the news release.

The news release stated that it will be mandatory for the customers taking advantage of the interim program, “to enter into a written plan for repayment similar to what is used with utility customers participating in other deferred-payment programs.”

“It’s not a huge huge amount, but it is something we can do that’s within our scope of services … “ Mayor Dennis Kintigh said.

Kintigh said there are federal employees who live in Roswell that work for the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Artesia, Bureau of Land Management, the federal courthouse and more.

City/RISD reporter Alison Penn can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 205, or at reporter04@rdrnews.com.