UPDATE: Strongsville Family to Have Water Turned on Today
Cleveland to restore service for 30 days while issues are resolved
A Strongsville family living without water since May 16 will have the service turned back on today, a Cleveland Water spokesman said.
Jason Wood, chief of public affairs for the water department, said crews were on their way to the house this afternoon to turn on the water because of the family's medical dispensation.
"We'll get the water turned back on today," Wood said.
He said that while investigators still aren't finished looking into the four-year-old case, the department has authorized a 30-day turn-on.
Bill Kochock told Strongsville Patch that he and his wife have been talking with Cleveland officials for several years about the billing issue, which he said started with "an enormously high" bill in 2008.
He said the matter was complicated by the fact that their landlord left the country.
The family is on disability due to health problems, he said.
Wood said the Kochocks have been asked to take part in a Tenant Deposit Agreement, in which they will take responsibility for paying their own water bill, but will not be responsible for the past-due balance.
"They start with a clean slate," Wood said. "That's something all tenants have a right to do."
Wood said Cleveland Water did notify the family of a pending shut-off with a delinquent notice mailed April 2, a final notice mailed April 17 and a door-hanger on April 24.
"We do not turn off water without notice," he said.
He said the next step is for the Kochocks to take advantage of the Tenant Deposit plan.
"We need them to work with us," he said.