Dave's
"Dealing With The City of San Jose"
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The City of San Jose has an ordinance stating that the property owner is responsible for trees that are planted in the "parkway strip" (between your front yard and the street). The property owner is responsible for damage caused by the trees. (The City planted the trees in the first place.) The property owner must not cut down or remove such trees without a permit. The property owner must replace the tree with a tree approved by the city.
The City of San Jose has an ordinance stating that the property owner must pay for garbage and recycling pickup, regardless of whether anybody is living in the home. If you go on an extended vacation, you must still pay for garbage and recycling pickup. If you move and the house is unoccupied, you must still pay for garbage and recycling pickup.
The City of San Jose has an ordinance stating that there will be a $5 late charge when your utility bill is not received on time. The ordinance does not allow any "waivers" of the fee unless the bill is returned to the City by the Post Office. It does not allow Utility Billing Supervisors to "waive" the late fee, even if you have a reasonable explanation or if there is reasonable doubt.
So by now you're asking, "what's his beef?"

Well, I'll tell you.

I wrote the City of San Jose a check for $27.90 on July 8, 1996. I mailed the check, either later that day, or at 6:30 a.m. the next day on my way to work. I put it into the slot inside the United States Post Office. The check was due on July 17th.

The City did not post the check until July 24th and therefore it is "late."

Three other checks I wrote that same day (and mailed at the same time) were posted on July 11, July 11 and July 18th.

And yet the City of San Jose insists upon charging me a $5 late charge.

That's my beef.


Read my letter to Utility Billing Services.
Read their letter to me.
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Created on September 4, 1996. Last updated at 18:15 PST on February 2, 1997.
David W. Schultheis, San Josť, Silicon Valley, Santa Clara County, California, USA