Riverside County

Overpayments on Water Bills Waiting to be Claimed in Riverside County

Eastern Municipal Water District customers may be due funds from overpayments in the past few years, but officials advised ratepayers to check now, because the money is slated to be deposited into the utility's treasury.

According to the EMWD, about $141,000 in refunds are waiting to be claimed before the agency's Board of Directors votes Tuesday to turn the liquid assets into general fund revenue.

Roughly 1,500 customers are eligible to file a claim before that happens.

According to the EMWD, the monies are the result of account closures, efficiency rebates or fee changes that put more revenue in the utility's hands than was owed.

Under state law, a public governing body cannot spend overpayments for at least three years, while making a diligent effort to attempt to find the individuals who are entitled to take back the funds.

"EMWD attempts to locate the current address and contact these customers and developers, but those efforts are sometimes unsuccessful due to the lack of a forwarding address, companies closing, or other reasons," according to an agency statement. "EMWD goes beyond the public notice requirement (of circulating a list of customers owed funds in newspapers) by posting the complete current listing of unclaimed monies on its website and continuously updates it throughout the year." 

The Riverside County Board of Supervisors goes through the same process annually. In October, the board turned $417,000 in property tax overpayments into general fund revenue after the refunds sat unclaimed for over three years.

A complete list of the EMWD refunds can be found here. Anyone who wishes to file a claim may do so via www.emwd.org/UnclaimedMonies

The district encompasses Hemet, Mead Valley, Menifee, Moreno Valley, Perris, San Jacinto, the Temecula Valley and Winchester.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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