To the editor:
It has been reported that the Steubenville Council has approved the spending of up to $70 thousand to have the state audit the water department books. The state will more than likely use the whole amount. This is a complete waste of city taxpayer money.
The water department has delinquent bills that are approximately $2 million. An audit is not going to fix this problem or get the money that is due.
Before City Council starts spending money it doesn't have, it needs to do a complete review of the steps that are taken on past due bills and collection, such as: Who in the department determines how long before services are stopped? What city department personal is responsible to make sure these homes are vacated? Who is responsible to make sure that delinquent bills are paid? Etc.
Every city has regulations in place when it comes to the collection of payment due for water or procedures in the vacating of houses and closing of water along with any other city service. City employees in these different departments were or are being paid by the taxpayer to do the job they were hired for. They have been derelict in their duties, and, because of this, responsible water customers are bearing the cost in higher water bills.
Every government body, including city, state, county, etc. has laws already in place. The problem is that the people who are to enforce the laws are not doing it and they are suffering no consequences. This needs to stop.