Your Bill Explained


Your utility bill reflects your personal electric, water and sewer usage habits, solid waste removal and recycling, and private area lighting. Bills can vary significantly from month-to-month and are affected by weather, appliance efficiency, home insulation, days in the billing cycle and other factors.

The most likely reason for a change in your bill may be due to a change in how you used energy. Typically, a home is equipped with many energy-using appliances that are not always used the same amount each month. You may have had guests, which could have contributed to higher water usage (causing your electric water heater to run more, more lights being used or being used longer), more laundry, cooking, etc.

The time of year is another possible reason for changing bills. During the summer months, there are appliances that run a great deal more such as dehumidifiers, air conditioners, fans and swimming pool pumps. In the winter, most heating systems use electricity to circulate the heat. We also tend to spend more time indoors, running appliances and lighting for longer hours.

Finally, a bill may be higher or lower because there was a difference in the number of days between readings. It states on your electric bill the number of days between readings.

If you think your bill has changed drastically and none of these factors seem to apply, call our Customer Service representatives at 661-1660. One of our representatives may be able to offer an explanation or make arrangements for a reread of your meter.

YOUR UTILITY BILL IS FOR SERVICES YOU HAVE ALREADY USED.

Therefore, utility bills are due and payable when received. Payment is overdue 23 days after the bill is mailed to you.

Each customer has his/her own account number, which is located at the very top of the bill along with the address of that service. When inquiring about your bill, it is very helpful if you have your account number or the correct address of the service.

IF YOU ARE ENROLLED IN AUTO PAY, A STATEMENT ABOVE THE SUMMARY WILL INFORM YOU THAT YOUR BILL WILL BE DEDUCTED FROM YOUR BANK ACCOUNT ON ITS DUE DATE.

The PERFORATED bottom third of your bill provides you with an account summary. This includes the current amount you owe for electric, water, sewer, sanitation and the total. It also includes the amount for those utilities that may be past due and the total of your bill.

A late fee of 1.5% is charged for bills that are more than 23 days owing. If your bill is not paid before you are billed a second time, penalties are added.

Your utilities may be disconnected 15 days after written notice has been mailed to the customer. This notice may not be issued until at least 20 days have elapsed from the due date.

You have several payment methods to choose from:

  • PAY ONLINE:
    Log into http://www.jamestownbpu.com; click on the “Pay Your Bills Online Here" under “Quick Links” on the right side of the BPU homepage or click here. Follow directions to set up your account to pay by credit/debit card or e-check.
  • PAY BY PHONE:
    Call (716) 661-1660
    Select option/extention 3 and follow the prompts.
    Spanisgh and English options available
  • PAY BY AUTO PAY (FORMERLY EASY PAY OR EZ) ELECTRONIC TRANSFER:
    With Auto Pay, the amount of your bill can be automatically deducted from your checking account each month on its due date. Sign up using our online payment system at https://account.jamestownbpu.com as described above in "Pay ONLINE".
  • PAY BY MAIL:
    You may mail your check and stub in the return envelope
    Board of Public Utilities
    P.O. Box 700
    92 Steele Street
    Jamestown, NY 14702-0700
  • PAY IN PERSON:

    BPU Customer Service Office 92 Steele Street, Jamestown, NY
    Office hours are:
    9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
    8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Thursday, Friday

    City Treasurer’s Office Jamestown City Hall, 1st Floor 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday

    Town of Ellicott Building 215 South Work Street, Falconer, NY 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday
  • PAY BY DROP BOX LOCATIONS:
    CHECKS ONLY!
    BPU Office Building—glass enclosed area at the corner of the “D” building and driveway;
    City Hall Tracy Plaza Entrance;
    City Hall Police Station Entrance;
    Town of Ellicott Building, 215 South Work Street, Falconer.

The detail summary of charges includes:

  • The Basic Service Charge of electricity, water and sewer. This is the cost of meter reading, record maintenance, billing, and other customer services and is charged every month even if there is no product used.
  • The per unit charge for water (a unit = 100 cubic feet or 748 gallons) and sewer. Sewer charges are based upon measured units of water used each month.
  • Demand and reactive demand charges which relate to a customer's maximum hourly rate of energy use or load requirement during the billing period (usually for commercial and industrial customers)
  • The energy charge (per KWh) is multiplied times the number of kilowatts used as read on your meter.
  • The fuel cost adjustment charge per KWh fluctuates each month and reflects the change in actual cost of fuel or energy to the utility.
  • Various charges relating to off-street lighting, temporary services and transformer rentals and discounts.
  • Sales tax



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