The Ottumwa Courier

Local News

July 14, 2014

Avoiding a flood of debt

OTTUMWA — A busted water line is inconvenient. What it's not, said a local official, is inexpensive.

"We've seen homeowner repairs that run [to] $4,000," said Mike Heffernan, director of the Ottumwa Water Works. "We normally just handle the main; homeowners are responsible for the portion from the main to the house."

Heffernan and his staff have felt the pain of homeowners suddenly facing a huge bill to keep the water flowing. And they've discussed the situation.

They feel that HomeServe, a type of insurance company, can provide home emergency repair service plans for busted water lines. The cost is about $5 a month, and there's no deductible.

"Information about the plans will be mailed to customers," said Heffersnan.

Coverage plans offer homeowners protection against water and/or sewer service breaks.

"It's a matter of what risk they want to take on," he said. "The sewer is a separate insurance. Water Service line, Sewer Service, Interior Plumbing. They're all different plans. You're paying for protection. But it is optional."

The plans are only available for residences, not businesses.

“We have found that many of our customers become frustrated when they discover a leaking water service line, or have a blocked sewer lateral on their property and then discover that this piping is their responsibility,” said Heffernan. “Ottumwa Water and Hydro recognized that one way we could assist our customers is to offer them an optional program that would protect them against the cost and hassle of repairs in these instances. ”

Ottumwa joins another utility provider in Iowa, Des Moines Water Works, to offer HomeServe’s optional repair service plans to homeowners.

For more information, visit

— Follow Tweets by reporter Mark Newman @couriermark

Text Only
Local News
  • 0801 OTT Sports 2A State Baseball photo Fast start powers North Polk back into 2A Final DES MOINES — Top-seeded North Polk beat fifth-seeded and Heart of Iowa Conference rival Roland-Story 6-2 in the first Class 2A semifinal Thursday evening at Principal Park.The Comets scored all six runs in the first two innings, three each inning, en

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • Graham's presentation A sweet history lesson OTTUMWA — In one of the most popular monthly presentations the Wapello County Historical Society has ever hosted, it was standing-room only to hear the history of Graham Milk and Ice Cream Company and try some of the popular product. A landmark in Ot

    July 31, 2014 3 Photos

  • Ready, set, shop! OTTUMWA — Iowa's government says businesses must participate in the Tax-Free Weekend this Friday and Saturday. Store manager Greg Martin isn't complaining. "It’ll be much busier [than typical weekends]. Back to school is the second busiest season nex

    July 31, 2014

  • LCL scholarship recipients Supporting the health care future of the community OTTUMWA — For several area college students, Thursday afternoon was a chance to put names and faces with the thousands of scholarship dollars they have just received. The Ottumwa Regional Legacy Foundation hosted a reception to honor the 25 college s

    July 31, 2014 2 Photos

  • 0801 OTT DMV new building exterior -M Ottumwa's DMV station ready to move OTTUMWA — If you believe you'll need to visit the driver's license station next month, you may want to write this down: 2849 N. Court St., Suite B. That'll be the new address for the Iowa DMV's office, which is currently located across from the Fairf

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0801 OTT Five Things logo -L T Five things to do in southeast Iowa OTTUMWA — Celebrate summer in a variety of ways and in several communities this weekend. Many towns are holding festivals, shows and events all centered around the summer theme, so head out while it's warm. 1. "Summer Shorts" is the Davis County Play

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0731 OTT Aviation plane -T -M Flying free OTTUMWA — The financial obstacle may have been removed if your career goal starts with learning to fly. "We have it set up for three terms, about nine months," said pilot and chief flight instructor Darren Graham at Indian Hills Community College. "

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Supervisors discuss pipeline potential KEOSAUQUA — Van Buren County Supervisors received preliminary, general information on a new pipeline being proposed to carry oil from North Dakota through Iowa, including Van Buren County, then crossing into Illinois. The proposed Bakken Pipeline wou

    July 30, 2014

  • Fairfield stabbing suspects' trials separated FAIRFIELD — The three people accused of dragging a man into a Fairfield apartment before robbing and stabbing him have had a judge grant their requests to separate their trials. Dawn Dunn, Dustin Roll and Brett Hedblade are each charged with willful

    July 30, 2014

  • Local business donates grain rescue tube KEOSAUQUA — Stockport Elevator, owned by Roquette America, donated a grain rescue tube to Birmingham and Stockport Fire Departments. A training session was conducted Monday, led by Dale Ekdahl, a representative of Outstate Data, LLC, the device’s man

    July 30, 2014

Photo reprints