The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local Business

February 4, 2014

City writes off $900,000 in unpaid utility bills

Crawford Field donation finalized

ANDERSON – The city of Anderson recently wrote off almost $900,000 in uncollectable utility bills during 2013.

The Anderson Board of Public Works on Jan. 28 voted to approve the write-off of what is considered uncollectable bills in the city utility departments in the amount of $891,641. The uncollectable accounts were tabled from a previous meeting in an attempt to collect the unpaid bills.

Pete Heuer, chairman of the Board of Public Works, said the amount of uncollectable utility bills was approximately $120,000 lower than the amount in 2012.

Although the uncollected amount is written off the utility department books, the city will continue to attempt to collect the past due bills, he said.

At the same meeting the board approved a professional services contract with fraud investigator Doss Baker to work with the utility office.

Baker will be paid $18 per hour for a maximum of 35 hours per week or $630. The city can renew the contract after six months.

The board on Wednesday approved the final plat for the donation of the Crawford Industrial Park property at the intersection of Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and 25th Street.

The property includes the Crawford Park baseball diamond and an adjacent 29 acres.

The donation of the property by the Racer Trust came after a three-year delay. The donated property will continue to be used as parks.

The Racer Trust is overseeing the sale of the former Guide Corp. properties in Anderson.

The city is also receiving a donation of Belmont Park, which is in the neighborhood west of the former Guide plants, from the Racer Trust.

In 2011, the city was to have received Crawford Field as compensation for the sale of a portion of Shadyside Park for Prairie Farm’s dairy for its expansion. The transaction didn’t take place until earlier this year.

The board set a bid date of March 4 to accept quotes for the mowing of ditches the city is responsible to maintain.

Follow Ken de la Bastide on Twitter @KendelaBastide, or call 640-4863.

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