Ward Notices 25/7/2017
Walk the Talk on Sun 23 July
The walk is not going to directly affect the suburbs in Ward 117. But I would stay away from Emmarentia, Greenside, Parkview (near the gold course), Melville and Jan Smuts in Parktown/Westcliff until mid-afternoon. For more info – visit www.walkthetalk.co.za.
Jazz on the Lake on Sun 3 September
The usual road closures and other security provisions will be in place. For the affected communities near the lake, please contact your resident’s associations for resident’s passes (see below for Saxonwold and Parkwood). For residents in suburbs like Parkhurst, Parktown North, Greenside, Houghton, etc, you will not need passes – just make sure you don’t try and drive through the area. For religious institutions, healthcare facilities, etc in the Lake area – you can contact me and I will pass on your request for day passes to the organisers. More info will be supplied closer to the time re the event.
Saxonwold/Parkwood Resident’s Passes for Jazz on the Lake
There is another chance for residents in the above suburbs to collect their resident’s passes on Sunday 30 July at Fearnhead Park, Dudley Rd, Parkwood from 9am-noon. You need to bring proof of residence. You can chat to the committee of the Residents Association and I will also be there. More info via the www.sapra.org.za.
Nodal Review Public Meeting – Tue 25 July
The Spatial Development Policy for the City identifies several Nodes – one of which is Rosebank. These nodes are important as they are key areas that define the type of development that they will contain as well as influencing the surrounding areas. Our Region B Nodal Review presentation and feedback will be held on Tuesday 25 July from 9am-noon at the Berario Rec Centre, 181 Dolores Ave, Berario.
Water Restrictions Are Still in Place
Please note that there are still water restrictions in place. You MAY NOT WATER (ie no hoses or irrigation systems) from 8am in the morning to 4pm in the afternoon. You also may not use a hose to wash down sidewalks or wash a car. Please report all transgressors via JMPD on 011-3755911.
Submit Your Electricity Meter Readings Between 20-27 of Each Month
Umec are the new electricity meter readers in Region B. They do have their meter reading teams out and about in the suburbs at the moment. But there are over 3700 households who are either denying them access or are not home. They advise that you can submit your meter readings – ONLY FOR OLD DIAL METERS – to them via email on firstname.lastname@example.org along with your contact details, account #, address and a CLEAR photo of your meter showing the reading.
New Billing Escalation System
We were told a couple of weeks ago that the Revenue Department now requires residents to do the following if they want to escalate a billing issue. I haven’t told you about it yet as I don’t believe it will work for the following reasons:
– The mailbox for backoffice was full for over a week last and this week.
– No feedback or acknowledgement is ever provided by the person opening the mail.
– It is difficult to know where you are on the escalation process.
– Often emails are sent through with large attachments that are often lost or do not make it through the COJ firewalls.
– Officials have to usually wade through massive email chains and long convoluted descriptions of the problem.
– There is no advice as to what to do next if the “Group Head: Finance” cannot help you?
– There is no time limit provided in steps 3 and 4.
I would thus still advise my residents to use the system in the next section to log and escalate billing problems, but you are most welcome to try out this one. As always, please let me know how it goes.
The Escalation Process
Please log your billing query via the call Centre on 0113755555 / 0860562874 or go to your nearest walk in Centre and get a reference number.
Queries should be resolved within 30 days. If you have not received any resolution after 30 days or when you receive your next bill, please follow the next steps in the escalation process.
PLEASE DO NOT SKIP STEPS AND MAKE SURE YOU ARE GIVEN A REFERENCE NUMBER WHEN YOU INITIALLY LOG YOUR DISPUTE.
1. Step one
This will be the email in which a customer will be able to escalate his/her query if after 30 days, the query is not resolved. Feedback should be given to the customer within 7 days. Email: email@example.com
2. Step two
At this phase of escalation, should the query still be not resolved after the first escalation, the customer will be able to escalate to the next level of the Deputy Director for intervention. Feedback should be given within 3 days.
3. Step three
Should the matter still not resolved at the previous stage, then the customer should escalate to the level of the Director: Billing.
4. Step four
Lastly, should the matter still not resolved, the customer can escalate to the Group Head: Finance.
What Do I Suggest You Do if You Have a Billing Problem?
Go to the Randburg Revenue Centre, cnr Jan Smuts and Bram Fischer, Mon-Fri 8am-3’30pm and Sat 8am-12’30. Log it with the consultant and note the ref # and date logged. Make sure you go through the account with the consultant and that he/she understands the problem. If you are not in Region B, you need to ask your Cllr or fellow residents on where your Regional Revenue Centre is located.
Note: You can try and log it via the call centre, but it is often off-line and you cannot really go through your account with them. It is likely that your problem will not be resolved at all and all you are really doing is getting a reference number so that in 30 days you can escalate the problem.
If it wasn’t resolved one month later (or if you already logged it over a month ago), then send me the following in an email:
Ref # older than 1 month
Meter number if its a meter problem
1 short sentence description of the problem
I will escalate to billing or other relevant officials. You will need to keep pestering me or the official I pass it to every month (probably for several months) until it is resolved.
Billing Due Dates
In February this year, the City re-organised its billing system to take into account the current 7 regions that it is divided into. When they did this, they changed the date of the bills which then has an affect on the due date for payment.
If you want to change your due date, you can send an email with your account number(s) to firstname.lastname@example.org. I would suggest you use the 28th as your new due date. You can make this change only ONCE a year
Get Your Municipal Bills Online
You can access eservices.joburg.org.za website to obtain your municipal accounts and request that they be sent to you via email. Please go in and make use of it, especially if you have not received a bill recently.
Check Your Pre-Paid Electricity Charges
A Blairgowrie resident complained about how few Kilowatt Hours (KWH) she was getting for her money – about 250 Kilowatt hours (kwa) for her 1st R500 purchase at the beginning of the month. I suspected she was on the Business Tariff instead of the Residential one. So I did some sums and came up with the following calculations. Note that electrcity is charged on a step tariff that resets every month – so you get more units you buy in a month, the more you are charged.
Domestic: The cost of a kwh for the 1st 500 kwh should be R1,32 per kwh (incl VAT). Thus for your 1st R500 purchase, you should get around 378 kwh at the beginning of the month.
Business: The cost of a kwh for the 1st 500 kwh should be R1.97 per kwh (incl VAT). Thus for R500 you should get around 253 kwh at the beginning of the month.
The mystery was solved. She was registered on the system as a Business customer and a few e-mails later she was credited with the difference going back to when she got the pre-paid meter.
How Do I Check?
When you purchase your power this month, have a look at how many units you have purchased. Then look at the table below that I have produced for purchases of R500, R750 and R1000.
Purchased Domestic Business
Amount Units (kwh) Units (kwh)
R500 378 253
R750 560 380
R1000 726 507
If you have received the Business Units rate for your money, then you have been over-charged and you should qualify for a refund of the units, backdated.
How Do I Get a Refund?
You need to send an email to Jackson Mphakathi at City Power (please also cc me): email@example.com saying that you are on the incorrect pre-paid tariff.
You must provide the following documents:
– Proof of address via a Municipal Rates and Taxes statement not older than 3 years.
– Copy of your ID.
The above documents can be attached to the email. You will then get a refund in the form of a voucher with the difference in units you should have received.
As always, please let me know of your experiences – both good and bad. Good luck
Join The DA
If you want to join the DA, it costs R10 a year, or, I would recommend you take out a 5 year membership of R50. Please contact my Branch Membership Secretary – Teigue Payne on 082-892-2218 / firstname.lastname@example.org. He will send you the online membership form and banking details. You can be from anywhere in Joburg as you will be allocated by Head Office to the Branch in your respective ward.
My Online Business Card
All you have to do is click on the link below to open up my online card and then click on the online “Save As Contact” link. Click here to access my Online Business Card
You can also access various useful links and sign up to my newsletter, as well as forward the link to others.