What Royalties Can Do for Your City

By: Utility Service Partners June 26, 2019

iStock-1004391552Partnering with Utility Service Partners, Inc., a HomeServe company, to offer the NLC Service Line Warranty Program educates homeowners about their service line responsibilities and enhances their peace of mind. As part of the partnership, municipalities can receive royalties which are often used to fund important community programs.

In Evansville, Ill., the Evansville Water and Sewer Utility has been able to provide over $100,000 in utility bill assistance to more than 500 residents through a partnership with the Community Action Program of Evansville, funded through royalties since 2017.

The Onondaga County Water Authority also has a homeowner assistance program, but their program helps homeowners replace leaking and collapsed water and sewer service lines if they’re unable to cover the costs themselves.

“It’s really been a godsend for a lot of people,” Jeff Brown, Onondaga County Water Authority general counsel and public affairs officer, said. “They would have to spend two to three thousand dollars to fix [a leak].”

The water authority also encouraged the East Syracuse-Minoa Little League to apply for a grant through the HomeServe Cares Foundation to install a water line and tap at the league’s field, providing fresh water for the concession stand and to water the field.

“To have to invest in infrastructure and not the kids was troubling,” Danny Liedka, league vice president, said. “This was a godsend to us, because we would have had to keep kicking the can down the road, year after year, and it would have likely been five or ten years before we were able to do a project of this magnitude.”

iStock-1056944418In Scranton, Pa., royalties are used for a matching grant program to assist homeowners in making
improvements to their home exteriors as part of the city’s ongoing beautification and revitalization efforts. The program allows for projects such as the replacement and refurbishment of driveways and sidewalks or painting homes.

“We use the commission we receive from the program to fund our Scranton Homeowner Assistance program,” David Bulzoni, City of Scranton Business Administrator, said. “It is a grant program managed by the nonprofit Neighborworks of Northeastern Pennsylvania and has enabled the City to assist homeowners with capital improvements to their residences. The program has been very well received.”

The Jackson Municipal Utility Authority has been a partner for approximately nine years, and the royalties the authority would receive are donated to charitable organizations either located in Jackson Township, N.J., or serving Jackson Township residents, with preference given to those charities serving immediate human needs, such as feeding the hungry or supporting those suffering from serious illness.

“One of our concerns was that we didn’t want to be making money on this program,” David Harpell, Jackson MUA executive director, said. “We were doing this for the residents’ benefit.”

More than $53,000 has been distributed to organizations serving the Jackson Township area and residents. In addition, in a relatively new program, Jackson MUA has set aside an additional $3,000 for bill assistance through the partnership.

Orem 2In Orem, Utah, royalties assisted in the construction of the All Together Playground, an all-abilities playground designed to allow children with disabilities play alongside their peers. The entire playground is wheelchair accessible and designed with the safety and engagement of non-neurotypical children in mind.

“We wanted everything to be without barriers,” Steve Downs, Orem deputy manager, said. “There are no stairs; we have ramps the whole way up to the highest point. There isn’t anywhere they can’t go. One of the big pushes is to allow children with disabilities to socialize with their peers. This playground allows them to do the same activities beside their friends.”

From capital improvements and beautification programs to homeowner assistance and funding nonprofits, there is no end to what royalties can do to benefit a community. What will it do in your city?

NLC Service Line Warranty Program partners with municipalities to educate homeowners and offer affordable protection against potentially costly service line repairs. The Program uses a network of local plumbers who have gone through background and drug screenings. The Program’s 500-seat call centeris staffed 24/7/365 to answer claims calls and dispatch contractors to address homeowners’ emergencies.

The Program is provided at no cost to cities, and partner cities can receive royalties based on participation.

To find out how you can help your residents achieve peace of mind, contact us.