Perhaps I wasn’t clear in the original post.
This law only affects separately metered municipal utilities in tenant occupied units. Nothing has changed in how you handle utility cost for joint metered utilities. What you are doing now is permitted as long as disclosed in advance of signing the lease.
With the enactment of this legislation separately metered municipal services can now be directly billed to the tenants by the local governments, similar to how separate gas or electric accounts are billed to tenants by WE Energies*. This makes it more practical to have tenants pay their own sewer and water with less potential that you will find their unpaid bills on your property taxes*.
This change will initially affect many single family rentals where owners already have tenants responsible for their own sewer and water bills. With minimal costs owners of duplexes can take advantage of the new law by having a plumber separate the water supply and install a second meter. Then those duplex tenants could be billed directly by the municipality.
I would be surprised if many multi unit owners will incur the costs of this work, at least initially. But just like separating gas and electric, duplexes were the first to be retrofitted followed by more and more multi unit buildings
The net result should be more conservation, that ultimately results in more rate increases. ;-(
“The additional revenue is needed to offset declining water sales in the face of rising costs, officials said.”
*This is now similar, but not exactly the same as how a WE Energies account is handled. The new law does NOT completely eliminate the ability of the municipality to place the charges on the property.