Frequently Asked Questions (Utilities)
Does the City of Union accept partial payments for utility bills?

No, our offices cannot accept partial payments.

What are all the different color paint marks in my yard?

When any type of proposed excavation is to occur all of the underground utilities in the excavation area must be marked. Electric lines will be marked in red, gas lines in yellow, communication and CATV in orange, water lines in blue and sewer lines in green. Remember that a locator is not going to mark your private lines you have installed yourself. These include septic tank lines and underground electric to garages or pools. To find out what each color means, visit SC811.

Why is my neighbor’s bill much lower or higher than mine?

When comparing your utility bill with that of a neighbor, friend or relative, keep in mind a couple of important factors. Since all utilities are usually included in the same bill, this type of bill will not compare directly with other systems’ billing. Customers of other utilities may receive separate power, gas, water and sewer bills depending on where they live. When comparing, be sure you are using the combination of all the utilities they have that are on your bill.  Another factor to consider is insulation and efficiency. This can be influenced by the age of the home or major appliances. Personal comfort levels can vary significantly, and since most energy in a home or business is consumed for heating and cooling, the thermostat settings can be a major factor as well.

Why does my bill vary from month to month?

The numbers of days vary between meter readings (which are indicated on your bill). Each monthly bill normally covers 30 days; however holidays and weekends also come into play.  Extreme weather may also cause your bill to fluctuate as well as new, changed or malfunctioning appliances.

Why does my utility bill have a past due bill when I know I mailed in my payment?

We may have received the payment after the due date or not at all.  Please call the office at 864-429-1717 and we will help solve the issue.

How can I pay my utility bill?

Mail your payment along with your utility bill stub.  Be sure to apply proper postage. Please mail your payment with sufficient time to reach us before the due date.

Customer Service representatives will accept your payment from 8:30 am – 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday, excluding holidays, at our office. You may also go to our drive-thru. 

Automatic Bank Drafts offers a convenient way to pay your utility bill without having to write a check. Simply complete the form and return it along with a voided check.

Visa, MasterCard, and Discover are accepted for payments either in person, over the phone at 1-864-400-1669 or on our website. If you wish to pay with a credit card/debit card there will be an additional 1.5% convenience fee charged.

Payments can also be made at our after-hours drop box at City Hall.  If paying at the drop box please include the bill stub and it is highly encouraged to pay with a Money Order or check, not cash.  The City of Union is not responsible for cash put in the drop box. 

What if the power must stay on for medical reasons?

If you or someone in your home has a serious health problem that requires continuous electric or gas service, please let us know. You will need to complete the “Special Needs” form which must be signed and sent to us by your doctor. You are still required to make timely payments. 
What happens if my meter is tampered with?

You are responsible for the seals on your meters. NEVER tamper with a meter or break a seal because not only is it dangerous, it is illegal. Not only are you required to pay for the consumption and tampering fee, we will prosecute under the South Carolina laws.  Click here for a copy of our tamper fee policy.

Why can't a representative tell me when my power will be restored after a storm?

It is impossible to accurately predict restorations of specific circuits serving particular residences because of the many challenges that we face; however, please know that we do everything possible to get service restored as promptly as possible.

How do we decide which customers to restore first?

We will first restore service to health care, emergency response agencies and other essential facilities. Residential customers are given priority over business and industrial customers and efforts are first targeted toward larger populated areas.

Does my bill go up in December and January to pay for the City’s Christmas lights?

No. You are only billed for electricity that goes from your meter box to your personal property. No costs are added to the bills in December and January to pay for the Christmas lights.

How can I save money on my electric bills?

The City of Union utility department offers residential customers an online resource, Energy Depot®, to help you better understand and manage your home energy use and costs. Energy Depot is your one-stop resource for energy information and it’s available free. 

What is the Franchise Fee on my gas bill?

The City of Union collects a franchise fee for the Towns of Jonesville and Pacolet.  The franchise fee is billed to customers within the corporate limits of each town.  For any questions concerning the fee please contact the Town of Jonesville and the Town of Pacolet.

What is the Purchase Power Adjustment on my electric bill?

On January 1, 2009, Lockhart Power Company entered into a new contract with Duke Power.  Since the City of Union purchases power directly from Lockhart this contract between Lockhart and Duke will affect the monthly wholesale bill the City receives from Lockhart.  To offset any increases or decreases in power cost the City is implementing a Purchased Power Adjustment (PPA).  The PPA will be reflected on your monthly bill.  Should you have any questions, please call the City of Union at 864-429-1717.

~Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. Matthew 5:9~