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Water, sewer billing cuts tenant out

Stephanie Mlot
Frederick News Post

(4/18) Effective July 1, Thurmont property owners will handle all water and sewer bills, cutting out the tenant as middleman.

The mayor and Board of Commissioners unanimously voted 4-0 Tuesday night to change the internal procedure.

The new process allows billing to be received only by the property owner, who is ultimately responsible for paying water and sewer bills, and who then charges the tenant.

"Major property owners in town that I'm familiar with didn't have any objection," Thurmont Chief Administrative Officer Bill Blakeslee said at Tuesday's meeting.

He said the change will more likely affect landlords with just one rental property.

Modification discussions began earlier this year, when some property owners told town employees and officials that they were unhappy about getting stuck with a bill if a tenant skipped town.

A notice will be mailed with the next Thurmont water bill, notifying property owners about the impending change.

The billing modification will affect only water and sewer bills; the process for electric bills will remain the same.

Commissioner Bill Buehrer was not present at Tuesday's town meeting.

Change to trailer parking ordinance

A town ordinance restricting the parking of trailers on residential streets for more than 48 consecutive hours is getting a slight face-lift.

Tuesday night, Mayor Marty Burns and the board voted unanimously to remove the word "continuously" from the rule.

"We are trying to make it as simple as possible to modify," Burns said Tuesday. "We're trying to just clean that up."

The mayor said the town doesn't want to ticket people for skirting the law, but officials made the change after a couple of residents complained.

"I hate to have to regulate common sense, but that's basically what this is," Burns said.

The change will go into effect once the ordinance is updated.

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