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07/27/2021 03. Program Updates on Uncollectible Debt and Write-Offs 1 f N • "<k4:: :;RPUkaTh:V 8 ;;;" BUSINESS OF THE CITY COUNCIL YAKIMA, WASHINGTON AGENDA STAT EM ENT Item No. 3. For Meeting of: July 27, 2021 ITEM TITLE: Program Updates on Uncollectible Debt and Write-Offs SUBMITTED BY: James Dean, Utility Customer Service Manager SUMMARY EXPLANATION: City Council requested an update and some background information on uncollectible debt and write-offs, including parking citations and others.Attached is a memo with information related to this topic. ITEM BUDGETED: NA STRATEGIC PRIORITY: Public Trust and Accountability APPROVED FOR SUBMITTAL BY THE CITY MANAGER RECOMMENDATION: Review reports and provide direction as appropriate ATTACHMENTS: Description Upload Date Type ❑ 1 -Uncollectible Debt_memo 7/14/2021 Coker Memo 2 „....,,,-,.,,,,t, -----0: Y.,-(i''' .04(-* *-..41::;\, ,141000„ it* • ril ',„, . . 1 :4..., . :re'," \*:::::),.4,14 ATI vi,e/ UTILITY SERVCES TO: City Council City Manager FROM: James Dean, Utility Customer Services Division Manager DATE: July 14, 2021 RE: Summary of uncollectable debt write-off process At the March 2, 2021 Council Meeting a motion was approved to discuss uncollectable debt as it relates to utility accounts and parking enforcement. This memo will provide information on the annual write-off process for uncollectable debt for utility and parking enforcement accounts. The Utility Services Division annually submits to City Council for review and approval an amount accounts that have deemed as uncollectable including some parking citations. These delinquent accounts have been deemed as uncollectable and are recommended for write off for various reasons including: bankruptcy (discharge of debt)filings, death of the debtor, accounts have been returned from a collection agency as uncollectable or having reached the six-year statute of limitations as defined by RCW 4.16.040. This means that a collection agency has had six years to attempt collection before we ultimately write off. The utility bills encompassing our multiple utilities each customer may have are currently considered one bill and we utilize the provisions in RCW 35.21.290 and 35.21.300 that allows us to discontinue service and impose an unfiled lien against the property. The majority of the annual utility write offs are largely due to accounts that have reached the six- year statute of limitations related to billings done six years ago and bankruptcy filings. The write offs typically represent less than 1% of what was billed for the year the write off actually represents. This percentage is within the amount the amount that is reserved for each utility for bad debt and does not decrease the fund balance.