Call Center Access
- On October 1, we completed the transfer of all water and wastewater customers to the same billing system that we use for natural gas. The system conversion went fine. The combined system allows Citizens to provide customers with one monthly bill, one call center, monthly meter readings for all services and more flexible payment options.
- We anticipated challenges that could arise from the changes noted above and prepared contingency plans. One challenge that developed following the change is extremely high call volumes driven by customer questions related to combined bills, new payment options and the onset of cold weather. The high call volume has resulted in long wait times and inability to reach us that we know are frustrating to customers.
- Numerous steps identified during our planning process are being taken to address the long wait times including, but not limited to, the following:
- Increased call center personnel and overtime on all shifts;
- Adding more than 20 new phone lines to handle additional calls;
- Training more than 20 new call center representatives to serve our customers;
- Encouraging customers to contact us through our website with a response back from a Citizens customer service representative.
- The steps noted above have helped the situation however we are still several weeks away from meeting our customer service expectations. We're confident that our plans and ongoing efforts will provide better results as we move forward. We ask for your patience during this time of transition.
Q: Why are you combining my gas, water and sewer bills?
A: We have found through research, including focus groups here in Indianapolis, that most customers prefer the convenience of a combined gas, water and sewer bill. Also, combined billing saves about $1 million per year in lower postage and processing costs, and we will pass these savings on to customers.
Q: There is a line on my October bill for "Water/Sewer Balance" or "Citizens Water Prior Balance". What are these charges for?
A: The "Water/Sewer Balance" is the last billed amount from Citizens Water brought into the new combined billing system. For customers with only water or only sewer services this caused confusion. The charges are only for the services provided at the property and there were no charges for services not provided. Once we were made aware of the confusion this caused we changed the line item wording to "Citizens Water Prior Balance".
Q: My bill was much higher than I expected. Why is it so high?
A: We aligned accounts to ensure our meter reading department can read the water and gas meters monthly. Future bills will be for the normal 28-32 days of service. Please review the days of service on the bill as this typically is why the charges are higher than normal for a customer.
Q: Why has my due date changed?
A: In order to ensure monthly meter readings and achieve a combined bill when possible, it was necessary to realign meter reading dates throughout our service territory. This change may impact your billing and due dates.
Q: This due date doesn't work for me.
A: We have a limited ability to extend your due date. Please email us by clicking Contact Us if you are interested in an alternative due date.
Q: There is a line on my bill for Non Budget Charges Billed. What are these charges for?
A: The non-budget charges are all charges on the current activity section on your bill except for the gas charges and sales tax directly below gas charges.
Q: If I am already on the gas budget can I go on the budget for water?
A: Yes, as long as the account is current, all current budget customers will have the opportunity to add water and/or sewer services to the Budget Plan.
Q: I received separate bills for my gas and water services and they are not combined yet. When will they be combined?
A: We combined a majority of the services when we merged our billing systems. Slight differences in the service address or names resulted in some accounts not being combined. If you would like for your services to be combined complete the Contact Us form and we will work to get the services combined within the next 90 days.
Q: Why does my previous balance show a credit?
A: Payments made to Citizens Water or Citizens Gas prior to the conversion are shown under the Payment(s) Received section under the Account Summary. All payments received for both Citizens Gas and Citizens Water bills are summed up in this total. The result was a “Total Balance from Previous Bill” credit on your billing statement. If you subtract the “Account Balance of Last Bill” and the Citizens Water Prior Balance or Water/Sewer Balance from your payment(s) received this is your true previous balance. Due to system constraints we were limited on how this could be displayed on the bill.
Q: I received my bill and it is not on the budget program after I sent in my request to be added to the budget program.
A: We received a large amount of mail correspondence from customers wanting to add water and/or sewer services to the budget program. We have completed all of the requests submitted and the next bill will have all services on the budget program.
Q: Can I only pay on the water or gas portion of my bill?
A: Payments are spread across all services proportionally. Directed payments are possible, but may cause one or more services to become delinquent.
Q: I have multiple services that are now combined, how will my bill look?
Q: Once bills are combined, how much will it cost to pay electronically?
A: Easy Pay will be free for customers wanting to pay directly from their checking or savings account. EasyPay can be accessed by phone or online. To pay using a credit/debit card the cost is $3.95. View Payment Options
Q: I live in the City of Lawrence or the Town of Speedway. Did you combine my water and sewer services into one?
A: Citizens Gas customers served by water and sewer utilities other than Citizens, such as Lawrence Utilities or the Town of Speedway, will not receive a combined bill from Citizens.
Q: I don't want a combined bill. Can I still get separate bills for my gas and my water/sewer service?
A: In order to achieve savings from the results of combining the gas and water utilities, it is necessary that we combine all mutual customers into one combined bill. If you are having difficulty paying your bill, please keep in mind that we do offer flexible payment arrangements if needed.
Q: What happens if I cannot pay my bill?
A: If you are having difficulty with paying your bill we may have payment options available for you. Please contact us at 924-3311 to speak with a Customer Service Representative to discuss payment options. You can also email us by clicking Contact Us.
Q: Can the services be in different names?
A: We will establish an account for all services at an address under the same name. The only exception is a property owner/tenant relationship in which the property owner is responsible for one service and the tenant is responsible for another.
Q: How do I get my bills electronically?
Q: There is a new item on my bill called "Your Average Daily Utility Costs." How is this calculated?
A: The average cost reflects the total current charges and sales tax divided by the number of days in the billing period.
Q: I don't want to pay for all of my services via Automatic Bank Deduction. Is this an option?
A: In order to participate in our Automatic Bank Deduction program for your account, we require the total amount due to be deducted on the due date of your bill.
Q: I pay online via my bank. Is there anything that I need to do?
A: If you are an existing gas customer and we have added water and/or sewer service to your gas account, there is no action needed by you as your new combined account number is the same as your previous gas account number. If you don't currently have a gas account, your account number for your water and/or sewer services will change and we ask you to update the new account number with your bank to prevent any future payment posting delays.
Q: Where can I pay my bill?
A: Please refer to the Payment Locations page for the closest authorized payment location.
Q: What is the red banner on my bill?
A: If there is a red banner on your bill, it is used to draw your attention to the past due amount of your bill.
Q: Is there a new website?
A: Rather than visiting multiple websites for utility questions or concerns, customers will find all the information they need at CitizensEnergyGroup.com.