Frequently Asked Questions

Below you will find helpful information that citizens and utility customers of the City of Arlington should know. New Residents and utility customers to Arlington should come in to the Finance Office at the Municipal Building to sign up for electric, water, sewer and garbage services.

About City Hall

  • How do I get to the Municipal Building?

    202 West Elm Street—One Block West of Main Street on Hwy 14

  • When is the Finance Office open?

    8:30 AM – 4:30 PM Monday-Friday

  • What is the Contact Information for the Finance Office?

    Mailing Address: PO Box 379, Arlington, SD 57212
    Phone: (605) 983-5251
    Fax: (605) 983-5358

  • When are City Council Meetings held?

    Unless there is a holiday or unusual circumstance — all regular City Council Meetings are held the first Monday of every month in the council room located in the back room of the Municipal Building located at 202 West Elm Street. Agendas are posted on the door of the Municipal Building prior to the meetings (we also try to post them to the website:

  • What if I am in need of Emergency Services?

    If you are in a situation needing help from the Fire Department, the Ambulance Service or a Law Enforcement Officer — Call 911 and the appropriate people will be dispatched to provide assistance to you. Arlington has a volunteer fire department and ambulance squad. The law enforcement is provided thru the Kingsbury County Sheriff’s Department. The non-emergency phone number for the Sheriff’s Office in DeSmet is 605-854-3339.

  • Does Arlington have a storm shelter?

    The storm shelter is the basement of the Arlington Methodist Church at 202 S. 4th St. The church is normally locked but will be unlocked as severe weather is predicted/spotters are sent out. Please enter through the doors facing W. Birch St. at the rear of the church.

About Your Utility Bill

  • When do I get my Utility Bill?

    The meters are read around the 25th of each month, and then the bills are mailed out during the first week of the following month. Bills are due by the 20th of the month. If they are not paid—you will be sent a delinquent letter and a $25.00 late fee will be added to the amount of the bill. That letter gives you approximately another 10 days to pay the bill. If it still remains unpaid at that time; a disconnect notice will be delivered to your address which will give you another 3 days to make payment. If at that time the bill is still unpaid—the meter will be pulled.

  • What if I did not receive my utility bill in the mail?

    Contact the Finance Office and the City will get you a copy of the bill. You are responsible for payment of the bill by the 20th of each month.

  • What if I’m away and can’t pay my bill on time?

    Contact the Finance Office and either pay an estimated amount or call for the amount of the billing, and if payment is postmarked by the 20th of the month—it is not late.

  • What methods of payment does the City accept?

    Cash, Check, Credit Card or Money Order. Or, we do auto debits if you have an account with Citizens State Bank, Arlington, SD. There is a small fee to use your credit card.

  • What happens if my utilities are turned off for non-payment?

    You will need to pay the amount needed to bring your account current plus a reconnect fee. Fees are higher if you request to have utilities back on other than during regular working hours.

  • What if I feel my water bill is too high?

    The City can double check the meter reading and if that is correct; we can suggest some areas that can be checked for a water leak—faucets, toilets, water heaters, etc.

  • Does the City estimate water bills?

    Only rarely if for some reason the meter reader cannot gain access to the water meter.

  • Is there an additional cost when I fill my swimming pool?

    Only for the gallons of water used to fill the pool.

Utility Related Questions

  • Who do I call to have my underground utilities located?

    SD One-Call must be called before any project requiring digging can begin. Call 811 or 1-800-781-7474. The utility companies have two working days to complete the required locates unless it is an emergency situation.

  • Can I turn my water meter on or off?

    No, only the City can turn the meter on/off. Contact the Finance Office to make this request. You can turn the water off inside your house if you want to prevent water coming in if you are going to be away for a while.

  • How do I check for a water leak?

    You can put food coloring in the tank of a toilet to see if it leaks from the tank. Check your water meter at night or when no one is home and if water toes thru the meter—there is a leak. Check faucets, spigots, water heaters, water softeners, etc. It is important to locate and repair leaks soon to avoid bills for additional water that is going thru the meter. Check the dial on the water meter to see if it is spinning—if it is going around; there is water going thru the water meter.

  • What do I do if I have low water pressure?

    Check the strainers (aerators) on the faucets. Make sure they are cleaned out. Check flow outside, at the hose spigot. If you have a water softener, put it on bypass, and see if the pressure picks up. You may need to check for a leak. Check with the Finance Office to see if the city crew is working on a water line in the area as that can cause a decrease in pressure

  • Is there Fluoride in the water?

    Yes, it is added by Kingbrook Rural Water.

  • What is the hardness of the water?

    23 grains (ppm)—Arlington’s water supply comes from Kingbrook Rural Water—Bruce Water Treatment Plant.

  • What are the City’s responsibilities for water line repair?

    The City is responsible to the water shut off which is normally in the boulevard—then it is the property owners.

  • What are the City’s responsibilities for sewer line problems?

    The City brings the sewer main to your property and then the line is the property owner’s responsibility.

  • What do I do if I have a sewer backup?

    If a backup occurs in the building, first check to see if it backs up only when you use your facilities such as stool, tub, washer or sinks. If so, it is a possibility that you need a plumber. If you have sewer backing up when you have not used any of the facilities, it is a possibility that it is the City main. Locate your building sewer line clean out, outside the house. Open up the cap. See if there is any water in the clean out. This will tell you if the problem is inside. If a blockage in the private building sewer is the cause of the sewer backup, it is the responsibility of the property owner to clear the blockage. There are firms in the area that can be hired to take care of this for property owners. If you feel that it is a blockage in the City main, call the Finance Office. The city crew will contact you as soon as possible. They will first check the public sewer main to determine if it is causing your sewer backup. If the public main is operating normally, indications are that your private building sewer is the cause of the sewer backup. They will immediately attempt to notify the property owner or resident of this fact.

  • What can I do to prevent sewer backups?

    If you have experienced backups from your building sewer, you might consider the installation of backup devices, which may be installed by your qualified plumbing company or contractor. They can assist you in the best methods and products. Do not plant trees and shrubs over the private building sewer. The roots of trees will seek out the joints of the sanitary sewer and eventually clog the pipe. (There are chemicals that can be used to treat tree roots, if you have this problem). Do not put large amounts of vegetable waste, such as pea pods and tomato skins, through the garbage disposal at one time. Even though these materials will go through the garbage disposal, they may clog the private building sewer. This also applies to large amounts of grease and paint, which will build up in the building sewer over a period of time eventually causing a blockage. Keep lint traps in the sinks, which drain washing machines in place. It is easier to clean out the lint traps than it is to clean out the building sewer. If you smell sewer gas, check to see if all sewer traps are filled with water (if not pour some water down the drain) and check to see if the cap on the sewer cleanout is on tight. If the gas smell persists, call your plumber and have your system checked.

  • There’s an odor inside my house, what is it?

    The odor could be from a natural gas leak or from sewer gasses. If it is a natural gas leak, leave immediately and contact Northwestern Public Service at 1-800-245-6977 from a cell phone or a neighbor’s phone. If you smell sewer gas, check to see if all sewer traps are filled with water and check to see the cap on the sewer cleanout is tight. If the trap is dry, pour at least 4 cups of water into the line to provide a seal in the U of the drain, preventing the sewer gas odors from entering the house. If the sewer gas smell persists, call your plumber and have your system checked.

  • How can I detect a gas leak?

    The smell is the best way to detect a gas leak. Because natural gas has no odor, Northwestern Public Service adds a chemical—a harmless odorant to natural gas, so that you will recognize its distinct “rotten egg” smell if there is a leak.

  • What should I do if I smell gas inside a building?

    The following is a list of procedures to follow should you ever detect the smell of gas within your home or business. Following these steps will help ensure your safety as well as others.

    1. Do not turn on or off any electrical switches or devices.
    2. Extinguish all open flames. Do not use matches, cigarettes, or lighters.
    3. Leave the building immediately. Open doors and window as you exit the building.
    4. Evacuate to a safe distance.
    5. Call Northwestern Public Service at 1-800-245-6977—this is a 24-hour customer service number.
    6. Provide the gas company with your name and call back number, the address or location of the reported gas odor, and description of where the odor is detected, for example, in the kitchen, outside by the gas meter, etc.
  • What should I do if I smell gas outside a building?

    Notify Northwestern Public Service at 1-800-245-6977 and provide the following information: Your name and call back number, the address or location of reported gas odor, description of where the odor is being detected. Never use a website in the case of an emergency situation—always make a phone call!

  • What causes carbon monoxide?

    An appliance could give off carbon monoxide if: The heat exchanger is cracked. The vent hood, pipes or flues are blocked or corroded. The unit is installed or adjusted improperly. Boxes, laundry or other materials are blocking the base, restricting oxygen flow. It’s used incorrectly (e.g., heating a room with a gas stove). To prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, have your gas appliance checked by a service technician regularly. Have a carbon monoxide detector in your home to alert you in the event that carbon monoxide gases are present.

  • How do I know if my gas connectors are safe?

    If it’s been more than 15 years since your gas appliance (especially an oven or clothes dryer) was installed or inspected, call a service technician to check the connectors and replace them if necessary.

  • Is it OK to heat a room with a gas stove during a power outage?

    No! Using a gas appliance improperly can cause it to take in too much oxygen from the air, leading to asphyxiation, or not enough oxygen, leading to carbon monoxide poisoning. The same holds true for space heaters that burn fuel like propane or kerosene—these should never be used in an enclosed room. Never use a charcoal or propane grill indoors either. The best way to stay warm during a power outage is wearing layers of clothing and blankets. A wood-burning fireplace or stove is also an option, but make sure it’s in good working order.

  • If my power goes out, how long should I wait to call the utility department?

    If your power goes out, call the utility department right away. Every call helps pinpoint the source of the problem.

  • How long will food stay fresh in the refrigerator or freezer if the power goes out?

    Refrigerated food will stay cold up to six hours; frozen food will keep for about two days if the door is not opened. If the outage is prolonged, pack refrigerated items in a styrofoam or insulated cooler surrounded by ice. When the power comes back on, use a thermometer to check the internal temperature of the food—if it’s less than 40 degrees, it is safe to keep. If frozen foods still have ice crystals, they can safely be refrozen.

  • How do you decide who gets power back first during a blackout?

    Many times a power outage is beyond the control of the City of Arlington. The City purchases power from WAPA (Western Area Power Administration) and Heartland Consumer Power District. The power is brought into the City on East River Electric power lines. If the problem is caused in one of those areas—it is not within the City’s control to restore power. However, if the problem is within the City: An “outage protocol” is followed in responding to storms.

    1. Protect public safety by clearing downed lines and making sure police, the fire department, ambulance services etc have a source of power. The Municipal Bldg does have a backup up generator.
    2. The City of Arlington has two substations that are used to transmit electricity to our customers. If one of the substations receives damage—the City can switch all of its customers to the other substation in order to restore power to the entire town for a limited time while repairs are made.
    3. Repair distribution lines that carry the electricity from substations to various neighborhoods. Most of the primary power lines are now underground which eliminates the chances of lines being damaged during storms.
    4. Reconnect lines to individual customers—the most difficult and time-consuming step. If your power goes out, call the City of Arlington right away—every call helps pinpoint the source of the problem.
  • Why is it so dangerous to use candles during a power outage?

    The risk of fire is too great. If you must use candles, be sure to place them on a stable surface away from flammable materials, and keep a close eye on children and pets. NEVER leave a candle burning when you go to sleep or leave the house.

  • Who do I call to report a street light out?

    Street light outage reports should be called into the Finance Office at 605-983-5251. It will be required to give the location of the pole and describe the problem—the light does not come on at all—the light goes on and off, etc.

  • What do I do with leaves and other yard waste?

    Residents can take these types of items to the Restricted Rubble Site which is located north of town. There is a charge for dumping which depends on the size of the load taken to the site. If leaves, etc are put in plastic bags—they will need to be emptied at the site as no plastic is allowed to be left on site. The site opens in the spring depending on the weather and is open every Tuesday from 6:30 – 8:30 PM and the 2nd and 4th Saturdays of the month from 1:00 – 5:00 PM. In the fall when Daylight Savings time begins—the hours are changed to every Saturday from 1:00 – 5:00 PM as long as the weather allows. No more Tuesday hours. The site closes for the winter when the weather is no longer fit to have an attendant at the site. Click here for Restricted Use Site Flyer

  • How do I get my sidewalk replaced?

    The City does not require sidewalks in residential areas. However, if your sidewalk is in need of replacement—it is the property owner’s responsibility to replace it on their own. The City does not have any sidewalk replacement program in place.

  • What do I need to be aware of regarding snow removal?

    When the city crews go out to remove snow from the city streets and alleys all motor vehicles, trailers, etc must be off of the streets. If they are in the path of the snow removal equipment—the owner of the unit will be issued a snow parking ticket which will need to be paid at the Finance Office. The crew does not have a set time that they begin snow removal as it depends on the amount of snow that there is to be removed. So, if snow is in the forecast—do not park in the street!

  • What type of building project requires a building permit?

    A building permit is required when you are changing the enclosed square footage of a building, building a new structure, or moving in a structure. They are also needed if you are installing a deck or fence on your property. You need to obtain an Application for a Building Permit form at the Finance Office and the application and fee need to be presented prior to approval before the project work begins.

  • What is a Right-of-Way?

    Right-of-Way means the area of a highway, road, street, alley, electric line, gas pipeline, water main, storm or sanitary sewer main, or other such strip of land reserved for public use, whether established by prescription, easement, dedication, gift, purchase, eminent domain or any other legal means.

  • What is an Easement?

    Easement means a grant of use of land by the land owners to any person, or to the general public for a specified purpose, such as the construction or maintenance of utilities and/or storm water drainage.

News & Announcements

Swimming Pool

Posted on 07-09-2024


Posted on 07-02-2024

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