Since the changeover from Mountain Water to Missoula Water Company, one complaint that the new company has received from customers was not being able to pay their bills online.

Superintendent of Missoula Water Company Dennis Bowman explained that the problem has been changing billing records from Liberty Utilities to the new company.

“Through the process as we took possession on June 23rd, we ended up having to utilize Liberty’s billing system because they would not release the data to us,” Bowman said. “Liberty did not want to have any more direct debits out of customers’ accounts, or do any of the other e-billing stuff, so our hands were tied. We finally got our data from Liberty Utilities on August 28th which gave us access to everything including all the customers who were on direct debit.”

Bowman said the new company has been working with local banks to prepare for online billing for the thousands of Missoula Water customers who wish to pay via direct debit.

“Working through the banks, we got the direct debit system set up,” he said. “Once we started doing that they did some testing and that was finalized last Tuesday or Wednesday. So, now, we’re able to have direct debit access to customers now.”

Bowman said it’s very easy for customers to initiate or to reestablish their online payments for Missoula Water.

“All they have to do is resign the note giving the city of Missoula to reauthorize the ability to access the funds from their account,” he said. “Look on your bill or check your bank records to see if it has been pulled out or not. We sent out some stuff last week as a test with our payment provider Pay Mantis and our bank to make sure the payments went in correctly.”

Bowman said he plans to share a PowerPoint presentation to the Missoula City Council on October 4, and customers are invited to come to the meeting with any questions. They can also contact Missoula Water Company at 552-6700.