Frequently Asked Questions
Municipal Services Payment Portal FAQs
Why do I have to re-sign up for auto pay? Why can’t you just transfer my information?
The City of Madison is converting to a PCI compliant (payment card industry data security standard) payment vendor. The safety and security of your personal information is of utmost importance to the City. Transferring your information from our old system to the new system is not secure and not an industry best practice.
If you find it difficult to sign up, we are offering a kiosk at the Water Utility (119 E Olin Ave) and a Customer Service Representative (CSR) will walk you through this process. You can also access a computer at any of the Madison Public Libraries and we have a set of step by step instructions available to guide you.
You are always welcome to pay by mail or drop your payment off in person at the Madison Water Utility or the City Treasurer’s Office.
Are there fees involved with auto pay?
If you set up your auto pay using a checking or savings account, there are no service fees. If you use a credit or debit card, you will be charged $2.95 per payment. There is a $500 max limit for credit card payments.
Are my Bill Consolidator (BC) payments still going to go through?
Yes, but it would be very helpful if you are using your customer number for your BC payment if you would update the customer number.
Is there any way I can sign up for auto pay without using the computer? I used a paper form before.
To ensure the safety of your personal information, all customers must sign up for auto pay themselves. We have a computer kiosk available at the Water Utility for all customers to use to sign up. A CSR will walk you through this process. You can also access a computer at all Madison Public Libraries and we have a set of step by step instructions to guide you.
Why is the City switching billing systems?
We are changing to a billing system that directly integrates with our current financial ERP system. This allows us to see all utility information in real time. We are also changing our payment provider to a provider that is PCI compliant.
Will my auto pay start right away with my current balance?
You will have an option when enrolling in auto pay to pay your current balance if you would like. If you select this option you will be charged a service fee on the payment of the current balance. If you do not select to pay the current balance, this amount will be paid when your next bill is processed with no service fee and no late fee on Municipal Services bills with due dates of December 1, 2022 through December 31, 2022.
What are all of the various ways to pay and their associated Fees?
There is no fee for in-person debit/credit card, cash or check payments. No fee for auto pay using a checking or savings account.
- $2.95 fee for online one-time credit/debit card payment ($500 max payment if using a credit card. No max for debit card).
- $2.95 fee per payment for auto pay using a credit or debit card ($500 max payment if using a credit card. No max for debit card).
- $2.95 fee using a credit/debit card over the phone (IVR). $500 max payment if using a credit card. No max for debit card.
- No fee for one-time online echeck payments (payment using your checking or savings account).
- No fee to use your checking or savings account over the phone.
General Water Utility FAQs
Can I make a bill payment by phone?
Yes. Call 1-877-822-8414 to pay your bill by phone.
- You'll need the Customer Number and Account Number from your bill.
- Payment types accepted: Credit, Debit, ACH (Checking/Savings Account)
- $2.95 fee for payment using a credit/debit card over the phone ($500 max payment if using a credit card. No max for debit card).
- No fee for payment using your checking or savings account over the phone.
How do I open an account or ask questions about my account?
You may contact our billing office at (608) 266-4641 between 7:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.
How does the Madison Water Utility set its rates?
Water rates are set by the state Public Service Commission through rate cases in which the utility requests pricing to cover its costs of providing the service.
What is the average amount of water people use in Madison?
Per-capita water use for customers living in single-family homes has dropped to the lowest level in at least the last 20 years. Residential customers used 53 gallons per-person per day in 2018. Back in 1988, that number was 80 gallons per person.
The drop in per-capita water use means the City of Madison has hit its water conservation and sustainability goal set in 2006 that called for a 20% reduction in per-capita residential water use by 2020, based on a five-year rolling average.