City not endorsing warranty program
Monday, October 14, 2013 3:11 AM
The city of Decorah is not offering its support for the National League of Cities Service Line Warranty Program.
Last month the topic was reviewed by the Decorah City Council's community betterment committee after the Council could not reach consensus on whether to endorse it.
Last year was the first year of the warranty program that offers citizens the option of purchasing water and sewer line insurance protection and the Council agreed to allow the company to use the city's Decorah logo on its letterhead for marketing.
The program is endorsed by the National League of Cities and the Iowa League of Cities and provides coverage from the water or sewer main back to the foundation of the home, which is the homeowner's responsibility. City Manager Chad Bird reported last month some residents had problems working with the company and that he had been personally involved in two cases. The problems occurred when the insurance company only wanted to pay to repair a two-or three-foot section when the plumber recommended the whole line be replaced, he said.
Bird said he believed all pending cases have been resolved.
The city's support has been requested again as the warranty program begins its fall marketing campaign.
Bird told the Council at its meeting last week that during a recent meeting with warranty company officials, they conveyed their efforts to make repairs in a prompt manner and to explain company policy in "spot repairing" broken lines, which does not necessarily include replacing the entire line.
Bird said Iowa League of Cities officials were surprised about the complaints made in Decorah since 13 other Iowa cities participate in the program and they have heard of issues in no other communities.
Mayor Don Arendt told the Council he could not sign a letter supporting the warranty program on behalf of the city, but that the Council could choose to support the program. He said by signing the marketing letter for the warranty program it would give the appearance the city is endorsing it, even though the letter doesn't use that term.
The Council chose to take no action on the matter.
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