When it comes to your meter, there is a shared responsibility between the FGUA and its customers. This section focuses on education about those important differences such as meter reading policies, access to the meter, and important information regarding tampering or theft of meter devices.
Meter Reading and Maintenance
The FGUA owns and is responsible for the maintenance and reading of each customer’s meter. Florida State Law requires the FGUA read each meter for billing purposes. Meters are frequently located in a meter box that is flush to the ground, in a utility right-of-way in the front or back yard, or above ground, located on the side of the house. Meters may be replaced due to regular wear and tear and age, as meters slow down and become less accurate over time. If you suspect a meter or meter box requires maintenance, please contact your local FGUA Customer Service Office.
It is the customer’s responsibility to ensure the utility’s access to the meter. The FGUA requests assistance in maintaining access to the meter, with extra care taken to protect the meter or meter box from overgrown vegetation, damage caused by landscape maintenance, vehicles, and unauthorized access or use of the meters. Access issues could include a locked gate, unrestrained animal or other barrier or hazard that prevents the meter reader from safely getting to your meter.
In the event that the meter is not accessible, a door tag will be left, or a letter will be sent to arrange for access to the meter. Every reasonable effort is made to ensure meter reading for billing. In instances where the meter is not read, the FGUA will provide an estimated reading based upon the customer’s historic consumption. Meter estimation is rare, and is limited to no more than three consecutive months. If all other reasonable efforts have been made, and the meter remains inaccessible, the FGUA may work with local law enforcement to gain access to the meter.
Any unauthorized connection or tampering with a water meter is against the law and will incur a minimum $300 tampering fee. In the cases of suspected utility theft, the FGUA will send a warning letter notifying customers of tampering, and that ongoing tampering will lead to the removal of the meter, and the customer’s account will be assessed the costs of removing the meter, and the customer will be responsible for the tampering fee, costs to remove the meter, and costs to install the meter, in addition to any balance owed on the account prior to service being restored. Customers suspecting possible utility theft from their meter are encouraged to report incidents to their local Customer Service Office and/or law enforcement.