Who pays for water line repair
Asked Mar 1, 2010, 10:25 PM
I had water coming out of the shut off in front of my house. I contacted a city employee on a Sunday about it and was told by the city employee not to worry about it because he was 99% sure it was the city's shut off that was broken. I argued that I thought the problem could be on my side of the sidewalk because I had seen a leak like it before. I know from being on the town council that anything damaged after the city shut off to my house I would be responsible for, but he said he was positive it was the city's problem and not to worry. The following Thursday I came home to two holes in my front yard, one on the city side and one in my yard. Nobody called me to ask for permission to dig up my yard, and the plumber and excavating company that was hired had to leave for 1 hour to go get a part to fix the water line on my side of the shut off. Iowa code states that I was to be given notice to fix the damaged line myself in a reasonable time, but I was given no such notice. I was told by the city that it was an emergency because they feared the break in the line could be polluting the city water. I argued that they could have shut my water off until I could fix the problem which would have only taken me about 4 hours to do. I am also being double billed for the labor and excavation time. In total the plumber replaced a sleeve on the city shut off and put a patch in my plastic water line. I guess my question is... When a city does not follow its own ordinances and the Iowa code for residential water line repair or follow through with the proper procedures who pays the bill? Am I responsible for paying to have the city's shut off sleeve replaced and for them hiring a company that overcharges?