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Information on Backflow Administration Fee and Late Fees

Effective January 1, 2019, Des Moines Water Works’ (DMWW) Rules & Regulations provide for an administration fee of $15.00 per backflow device to be applied to customers’ accounts (DMWW Rules & Regulations 506.4 and 511.34).  This fee is intended to cover the costs associated with DMWW’s backflow program, including mailings, field inspections, processing surveys and test results, etc.  Many utilities charge a comparable fee; however, they require the fee to be collected by the independent backflow tester and then passed to the utility.  DMWW has chosen to collect this fee directly from customers.  These fees have been included on your December 2019 billing statement.

It is also important to note the customer is responsible for annual testing of backflow prevention devices as required by state and local plumbing codes, regardless of whether the customer has used their irrigation system or not (IAC 641-25.1, City of Des Moines Ordinance 26-628, DMWW Rules & Regulations 506).  If  a backflow preventer has  been replaced and is no longer installed, please contact (515) 283-8775.

A successful test of the backflow device must be completed by a qualified tester registered with the Iowa Department of Public Health. A list of qualified testers is available on DMWW's Backflow Prevention page.  Test results can be returned to DMWW by emailing, faxing to (515) 283-8723, or mailing to Backflow, 2201 George Flagg Pkwy., Des  Moines, IA  50321.

If successful test results of the containment backflow device located at the water meter are not received within 15 days of the test due date, a $100.00 late fee will be applied.  An additional $200.00 late fee will be applied to the customer’s account if a report is not received within 30 days of the annual test due date, and water service may be interrupted until such a time that a successful test result is received (DMWW Rules & Regulations 506.4 and 511.34). Late fees will be applied starting in January 2020.

DMWW’s Backflow Prevention Program is a critical component to maintaining a safe public water supply.  We appreciate your cooperation in complying with existing codes. Call (515) 283-8775 if you have questions.

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