Moving & Other Service Information

 

Moving?

Contact OPU ONE WEEK prior to moving. (507) 451-2480

Moving in:

If you are a new resident, or current resident moving to a new location served by OPU, stop at our office at 208 Walnut Avenue, Owatonna, MN and complete an Application for Service. You may also fill out this form, print it and bring it with you to the office.  It only takes a few minutes and helps ensure you receive the prompt, continuous service you deserve.

Moving out:

Please contact OPU at (507) 451-2480 and let us know the date.

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Utility Information

According to the MN State Data Privacy Act, the Owatonna Public Utilities is prohibited from releasing any customer's utility information.  If you are looking for utility information regarding a property you are looking to purchase or rent, the previous owner/tenant must give written approval before OPU will release that information.  Click here to download a Utility Information Release form.

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Sealing and Unsealing Meters

A customer requesting the seal or unseal of a meter for their convenience, will be charged a fee of $10.00 plus tax per meter which will be added onto the customer's monthly bill.

When unsealing meters at the time of a move order, no unseal fee will be charged.

Installing or removing meters (not new construction) are also subject to this fee.

Clarification:
Trailer Courts: When a trailer is removed from the trailer court, the meters are usually sealed at the request of the owner of the trailer. The owner of the trailer has no responsibility to the trailer court once the trailer has been removed. The billing system must retain those services in someone's name, so we seal and transfer all meters into the trailer court's name. The sealing charges must be billed to the owner of the trailer (disconnecting customer if done at the time of a move order) not the trailer court.

Sealing and unsealing meters for non-payment of bills or sealing and unsealing by authorization of the Administrative Manager are not subject to these seal/unseal fees.

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Electric Service

Owatonna Public Utilities purchases all of its electric energy requirements from the Southern Minnesota Municipal Power Agency (SMMPA), a joint action agency consisting of 18 Minnesota cities, including Owatonna. SMMPA owns 41% (362 MW) of Sherco 3 (884 MW), the newest, most efficient coal-fired electric generating facility in the entire Midwest Region, in partnership with Xcel Energy. This plant's state-of-the-art air quality control technology uses the dry scrubbing system that removes up to 90% of the sulfur dioxide and 99% of the particulates from the flue gases. SMMPA also has under contract a number of generating units located in member communities to provide additional power supply and back-up capabilities. Two 161,000-volt and five 69,000-volt transmission lines serve the community, providing excellent reliability and capacity for growth.

Power Outage Concerns and Helpful Hints

  • Check your own fuses and circuit breakers.
  • Loud bangs are caused by blown fuses; quite often caused by squirrels shorting the wire.
  • Check with your neighbors to see if their power is off; have they reported it?
  • If the trouble is not with your wiring and if the outage may not have been reported
    • Call 451-1616 after: 5 p.m.
    • Call 451-1616 or 451-2480 during business hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

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TV and Radio Interference

OPU service is rarely the cause of TV and radio interference. The trouble is usually found in the set, in the antenna or in your home. In fact, some of the most common causes of electrical disturbances are easily corrected and include:

  • Loose light bulbs, switches, connections, or fuses.
  • Solid-state dimmers and controls.
  • Compact fluorescent light bulbs.
  • Electrical kitchen appliances, large and small.
  • Other TVs, radios, computers, type players, etc.
  • Frayed wires.
  • Small bathroom appliances, such as shavers and hair dryers.
  • Electric tools or fences, burglar alarms, cordless phones and fish-tank pumps and heaters.

To correct an interference problem, follow these steps to pinpoint the source of the problem through a process of elimination:

  • Turn each light, switch and appliance on and off while observing the radio or TV's behavior.
  • If reception improves when several appliances and lights on the problem circuit are off, the problem may be eliminated by moving some appliances or lights to another circuit.
  • Adjust the direction of the antenna for the best reception. Look for any broken wires or loose connections. An adequate antenna, properly installed, is necessary for good reception in steel-framed or concrete buildings.
  • If the interference affects a plugged-in radio, walk around the house with a portable radio to find the place where the noise is the loudest. This will help pinpoint the source of the interference. If the interference is steady, it's probably from a stationary source. If it rises and falls, it could be from a moving source, such as an automobile, airplane or helicopter.
  • If the radio develops an on-and-off buzzing sound or if the TV picture is streaked, check outside. Some causes of these symptoms include nearby electric motors, elevators, electric signs, x-ray machine, cars and spark plugs in vehicles. Sometimes moving the antenna or set will remedy the problem.
  • If the radio or TV picks up citizen's band, police calls or dot-dish codes, the trouble is probably in the radio or TV itself. Ask you repair person to service the unit.

If these procedures don't identify the problem, the cause may be from electrical facilities outside your home. In this case, call OPU at (507) 451-1616.

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Natural Gas Services

Owatonna Utilities receives natural gas from a number of supply wells located in the United States and Canada delivered via the Northern Natural Gas Company pipeline. Two large taps on Northern's line ensure reliability and capacity for growth. In addition, a propane peak shaving plant provides additional supply on peak demand days and helps keep natural gas costs low for the community's residents and businesses.

EXCESS FLOW VALVE - OPU does install excess flow valves on all new residential gas service lines being served off of any gas main of 12PSI or greater. The excess flow valve limits the release of natural gas in the event of damage to the service line or meter set.

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Water Service

One of Owatonna's most valuable natural resources is its abundant, high-quality supply of groundwater. Water for Owatonna's residential and business needs is supplied by nine wells ranging in depth from 750 feet to 1,325 feet, drawing groundwater from the Prairie du Che'n formation. These wells are dispersed throughout the city to maximize reliability and quality. Combined well capacity is 14.7 million gallons per day (mgd) with an average daily demand of 4.2 mgd. Available water storage includes elevated storage tanks with a combined capacity of 3.25 million gallons, and a 1.0 million gallon ground level storage tank. The local groundwater is considered moderately hard (17.1 grains per gallon) and requires very little treatment - chlorine for disinfecting, taste and odor control, fluoride to promote dental health and polyphosphates to avoid staining problems associated with naturally-occurring iron in the water.

Every year in the spring, OPU flushes water mains to remove iron deposits from the lines and decreases the problem of rusty water.  For more on Owatonna's water quality, click here.

Point of Ownership

Owatonna Public Utilities owns and maintains the water mains within the city of Owatonna. The service lines that run from the water main to the building are owned and maintained by the property owner. The exact point ownership is the "corp" or valve connected directly to the tap in the water main. The corp is owned by OPU, the rest of the water service, including the "curb stop" or any other valves, are owned by the property owner.

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Sewer and Storm Water Service

In August 2000 the City of Owatonna began collecting a "Storm Water Utility" charge. The charge appears on the Owatonna Public Utilities billing statement as a separate line item. Like the "City Sewer Utility" charge, the City Storm Water Utility charges are determined by the City staff. Any question can be directed to the City at 444-4340. New Sewer services are arranged by contacting the City Engineering Office (507) 444-4350. A permit is issued by the city after satisfying fee requirements.

Sewer fees and rates are set by the City of Owatonna Sewer Ordinance. Owatonna Public Utilities performs the monthly billing of sewer for the City.  Click here for more information on sewer rates.

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