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Gaines Charter Township Water & Sewer Department

Be Safe Rather than Sorry 


Gaines Charter Township strives to protect and promote the health, safety and welfare of the Township by maintaining an efficient sewer system and a high quality water supply for area residents.

The Gaines Charter Township Water and Sewer Department bills homes and businesses that are connected to the water and sewer system quarterly; based on the metered water usage.  If you have questions about your bill, or are experiencing any problems with your service, please contact our office . If your usage is higher than normal, click here for a quick reference check list of possible reasons for high water usage.

If you are moving, out of or into, a property in Gaines Charter Township that is connected to our utility, please call us one week prior to the event date.  By giving us one weeks notice, you allow us to get an accurate water meter read for the final billing, which in turn gives us the correct information for the new owner.

All water and sewer assessment information requests must be received via email or fax.  Please fax requests to 616-698-2490, or email requests to Janice Boone.                                                          

Gaines Charter Township is a wholesale water customer of the City of Wyoming, and a wholesale sewer customer of both the City of Wyoming and the City of Grand Rapids.



        Janice Boone
           Water/Sewer Administrator
         (616) 698-6640 Ext. 25

         Tracy Lawrence
           Water/Sewer Clerk
         (616) 698-6640 Ext. 24



For after hours water/sewer emergencies

                                                                           please call 616-248-5024

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Billing and Payment

Please click here to access your water and sewer billing or history information.

Figure provided may not represent the most current information.  Gaines Charter Township is not responsible or liable for any amounts of information provided.  All usage is billed in arrears and is a lien against the property; therefore additional charges may apply to the account balance.

Payment by check or cash can be made at our office, or by mail.  For after hours payments, you may use the drop box located just outside the main upper-level doors. Payments deposited in the drop box are considered paid on the following business day. When using the drop box, we strongly recommend payment by check, in lieu of cash.

To pay by credit or debit card, please click here.  NOTE:  The card processing company will charge a fee for processing the payment.

Also, for your convenience, you may set up automatic payment from your savings or checking account.  Please complete the Water Auto Pay Form and return submit it to the Water and Sewer Department via the postal system, fax (616-698-2490), email, or in person.


Application Forms and Permits

Irrigation Metering

If you home has an irrigation system for watering your lawn and landscaping, you may want to consider the installation of an irrigation meter.  The use of an irrigation system will cause a higher usage bill for customers who use their system frequently.  Because your quarterly sewer billing is based on the metered water usage, the installation of an irrigation meter can reduce the customer's charges for sewer usage.  When an irrigation meter is installed, all the water that goes through the irrigation meter to the outside will be charged a water rate only.  The sewer billing will be charged on the water that the domestic meter (house meter) uses.

Steps to take to install an Irrigation Meter:

  • Obtain a water meter permit from the Township Water & Sewer Department.  You will be given a "meter" bar; your plumber will need the meter bar for his work to be done correctly.
  • Retain the services of a licensed plumber of your choice to install the meter bar.  All plumbers must obtain a plumbing permit from the Township Inspection Department.
  • After the meter bar has been installed,please call the BGUA (616-671-0002) 24 hrs. in advance, to make an appointment for the installation of the irrigation meter.  For inspection of the plumbing, contact the Township Plumbing Inspector (616-698-6640 Ext. 28).



The Water and Sewer Department completes a rate study every fall and reviews the projected revenue requirements for the coming year. The recommendation for rate changes (increases/decreases) are then brought to the Township Board for approval before implementation.

Please click on the current years adopted ordinance for the rates and charges.


Byron Gaines Utility Authority (BGUA)

The Byron Gaines Utility Authority manages the operation andbgua maintenance of our water and sewer system.  The BGUA staff has been trained to the highest standard as they work to serve our community.
Please extend a warm greeting to our staff if they come to your home or business.  Each staff member of BGUA has a BGUA ID and will be happy to present it upon request. 
 Click here for Backflow Preventer informationgr smallpdf
Click here for unapproved sump pump informationgr smallpdf

Click here for a BGUA Application for Employment

Hydrant Use Policy

As of January 1, 2013, the hydrant use policy has been updated to reflect Byron Township's and Gaines Charter Township's Water & Sewer Ordinance, Section 1306 Central Filling Location.                                                                                                

This means that all one day use only permits MUST fill at the BGUA hydrant only.  There will be an RPZ and meter installed on that hydrant for water accountability purposes. 

  • The Authority may direct individuals or companies to use a central water filling location, designated by the authority, for filling of tank trucks and similar equipment.
  • Use of this location shall be in accordance with policies and procedures as established by the Authority.
  • A Hydrant Use Permit must be obtained and all fees paid in the manner provided in Section 1305.
  • A Backflow Preventer or Safe Air Gap must be used at all times when filling tank trucks and similar equipment.                 
This means that all one day use only permits MUST fill at the BGUA hydrant only.  There will be an RPZ and meter installed on that hydrant for water accountability purposes.
The fees have remained the same:
  • Fee for One Day Use only:  $60.00
  • Fee for use More than One Day, but less than seven (7) days:  $60.00 minimum                                                        ($25.00 Administrative Fee plus Water Use Fee for actual metered volume of water used, with an aggregate minimum of $60.00)
  • Fee for Seasonal Use:  $165.00 minimum                                                                                                                                   ($25.00 Administrative Fee plus Water Use Fee for actual metered volume of water used, with an aggregate minimum of $165.00)
  • Deposit required when BGUA Equipment is Used:  $500.00
The following are a few reminders to consider as spring approaches:
  • All permits require the use of an approved RPZ Backflow Preventer, including permits issued to fill a pool.  A top-fill tank with a "safe air gap" might be exempt.  However, the tank must be inspected by the BGUA prior to use.  Please call ahead when needing an inspection.
  • All permits issued for more than one day require the use of a meter.
  • The BGUA has a limited number of RPZs and meters available.  If ours is not available, the customer will be required to purchase their own equipment or wait until ours is available.
  • If you own an RPZ backflow device, it must be tested annually.  A copy of the test report must be received by the BGUA prior to any hydrant permits being issued.  Even if you own your own equipment, you must still obtain a permit before hydrant use.
  • Credit care payments are NOT accepted.  All payments must be received prior to permits being issued.
If you have any questions regarding these changes or the hydrant permit policy, please feel free to call the BGUA office at (616) 971-0002.

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Water Reports


  • Codes and Ordinances

 Committee Minutes

 Most application forms and permits are in PDF Format  gr smallpdf  and require the FREE Adobe® Acrobat® Reader available from the Adobe website.

Gaines Charter Township maintains this web-site to enhance public access to information.  Content is for informational purposes only and should not be considered as certified, unless so stated.

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