Winter Weather Recovery Resources

WINTER WEATHER RECOVERY UPDATES

Updated: 3.2.2021 9:30AM

  1. Report Winter Storm Damages to FEMA

As temperatures rise, people across the state have begun to assess problems caused by the unprecedented winter weather experienced this past week. From busted water pipes to roof repairs, the City of San Marcos asks its residents to report all damages to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as soon as possible. 

Hays County is among 77 counties across the state currently eligible for Individual Assistance from FEMA. A map of all eligible counties is available online. Reporting damages to FEMA ensures residents and the City receive federal resources and services to aid in recovery efforts. 

Residents may apply for disaster assistance online by visiting the disaster assistance website. Once on the site, select the “Apply Online” tab to begin a new application. During the application process, remember to select “snow/ice” as the cause of the damage reported as a result of the recent winter weather event. 

Residents applying for both home and business disaster assistance are only required to complete one registration form. To complete the application, be prepared with the following information:

    Social Security number of applicant OR Social Security number of household minor child

    Annual household income

    Contact information, including phone number and addresses

    Insurance information, including company name and policy coverage

An email address is required to review registration status online. Residents applying without providing an email address will be required to contact FEMA for status updates.

Anyone without computer or internet access is welcome to use the lobby computer lab at the San Marcos Public Library, 625 East Hopkins Street, to complete the online disaster assistance application. The lobby will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. 

Guests are encouraged to bring their own devices to connect to the internet as a limited number of library computers are available. Individual assistance from staff will not be available and the main portion of the library remains closed to the public due to COVID-19 concerns. All visitors are asked to wear a mask and practice social distancing.  

For more information, call the FEMA Disaster Assistance Helpline at 1-800-621-3362. TTY users can call 1-800-462-7585. 


  1. Electricity - water

The City of San Marcos Electric Utility is completing manual meter readings at all customer addresses not automatically reporting into the billing software system to ensure exact usage numbers following our recent winter weather event.

Utility Rates

Many residents are concerned about spikes in utility rates due to stories being reported in the state and national media. San Marcos Electric Utility (SMEU) is a municipal utility owned by the City of San Marcos, and rates are set by City ordinance in coordination with the City budget process. There will be no increase in rates for SMEU customers at this time. However, customer usage will likely be much higher than normal due to the nearly two weeks of extremely cold weather we have experienced, which may result in higher than normal bills this billing period.

Customer Connect Usage Information

If your usage graph in Customer Connect shows usage on days when you had no electricity, please note that this is how the information is displayed during a power interruption, but you are not being charged for electric usage during those times. The San Marcos utility system retrieves information from your smart meter at regular intervals, and those daily readings can be seen in Customer Connect under the My Usage tab. During a power interruption, those readings may not be available so the system estimates your daily usage, which can produce imprecise results in Customer Connect.

The system used to provide daily readings on graphs in Customer Connect is separate from the City’s billing system. The billing system uses only the total actual Kilowatt hours used at your meter at the end of your billing cycle. SMEU is completing manual meter readings at all customer addresses not automatically reporting into the billing software system to ensure exact usage numbers following our recent winter weather event. This means that there will be no estimated usages for customers included in the first two utility billing cycles. Customers will only pay for the actual Kilowatts used during the billing cycle at their home or business.

Boil Water Advisory

Effective Sunday, February 21, 2021, the City of San Marcos has lifted the boil water advisory for all City of San Marcos water customers as testing has confirmed that our water is safe to drink.

As of February 20, 2021, all City water system repairs were completed and pressure within the overall water distribution system stabilized to a level that allowed water samples to be collected per Texas Commission on Environmental Quality requirements. These samples were then sent for laboratory testing and the results returned earlier today confirmed that no contamination had occurred.

Reporting Issues

As temperatures have warmed up, the City’s temporary winter weather call center has closed. If you need to report a water issue at your home or business, email Water/Wastewater or call 512.393.8010. To report a power outage email Electric Utilities or call 512.393.8313.

Winter Weather Event Utility FAQs \ Evento de Clima Invernal Preguntas Frecuentes Sobre Utilidades

The City of San Marcos knows our utility customers have many questions following the Winter Storm Event and the ERCOT-mandated rolling outages. The following frequently asked questions will help with answers about the electric outages, your utility bill, and how this event may affect utility rates. We’ll update our customers as new information becomes available in upcoming weeks.

La Ciudad de San Marcos sabe que nuestros clientes de utilidades tienen muchas preguntas después del Evento de Tormenta Invernal de la semana pasada y los cortes de energía obligatorios de ERCOT. Esta lista de preguntas frecuentes ayudara con respuestas sobre los cortes de electricidad, su factura de utilidades, y como este evento puede afectar las tarifas de utilidades. Actualizaremos a nuestros clientes en cuanto haya nueva información disponible en las próximas semanas.

  1. utility assistance

The City understands that some customers are concerned about being able to make their utility payments. Our Utility Customer Service Division is providing options to assist utility customers in navigating these challenging times. Please review the assistance options on our Utility Customer Service webpage for information on financial assistance, extended payment arrangements, late fees, and disconnections.

  1. community & Business resources
  1. Plumbing permit Fees waived

In order to relieve the financial burden on residents and businesses as a result of plumbing repairs made necessary by the winter storm event, the San Marcos City Council is temporarily waiving fees for permits associated with these repairs. This temporary waiver is in effect through the end of day on Thursday, April 1, 2021.

In most cases, a plumbing permit will still be required for all repair work and may be applied for online, 24-hours-a-day at My Government Online

  1. Brush Drop off & Community Cleanup

These services are open to residential garbage and apartment recycling customers in San Marcos. Residents must wear a mask and follow instructions from staff.

Community Clean Up

April 10, 2021 & May 8, 2021

Visit Resource Recovery for more information on what items are accepted at the brush drop off and community clean up.

  1. PRICE GOUGING

Price gouging is illegal if a disaster has been declared by the Governor of Texas or the President, and businesses raise the price of their products to exorbitant or excessive rates to take advantage of the disaster declaration. Check out the Texas Attorney General's website for more information on price gouging and how to file a consumer complaint. 

  1. disaster declarations

President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. Approves Major Disaster Declaration for Texas

Mayor Jane Hughson signed a Declaration of Local State of Disaster on February 13, 2021, that was in effect until February 26, 2021 at noon.

Governor Abbott Issues Disaster Declaration In Response To Severe Winter Weather In Texas on February 12, 2021.