First reading of utility bill ordinance set for Tuesday

The first reading of a utility bill ordinance, that would put utility bills in the name of the tenant renting a property, is set to be discussed by the Rapid City Council.

RAPID CITY, S.D. —Rapid City is looking to go back to how renters used to pay their utility bills.

On Wednesday, city leaders and council members discussed an ordinance that would put the city services accounts back in the name of tenants. Right now, the landlords are required to put the utility bill in their name.

Rapid City Public Works Director Dale Tech says this change would increase transparency between landlords and renters, where in the past it was hard for landlords to know if their tenants had paid the utility bill or not due to whether a residence was being rented out or not because it is not public record.

Tech says that based on public input in the last few city council working sessions, a number of home and property owners that rented their properties out, came to the city council asked for the requirement to be removed.

“We’re going to be doing some work with our utility billing software so we can maybe track those owner/tenant relationships better to be able to provide information back to the owner, so we’re working on that right now, but in the meantime we’re going to revert back to the way we did business for years,” Tech said.

The first reading of the ordinance will be next Tuesday, February 16.

Categories: Local News, South Dakota News