North Lawrence Water Authority employee error causes thousands of people’s water bills to triple

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BEDFORD, Ind. – Thousands of people in Lawrence County say their water bills have doubled or even tripled.

Edgar Kidd is one of the people who came forward about this issue. He said he found an expensive surprise inside of his mailbox this week when he pulled out his Lawrence County water bill and saw he owed more than $100.

“I about fell over when I saw it, literally,” said Kidd.

He has lived in the area for his entire life and says he has never had a water bill over $40. Kidd is just one of hundreds of people that have been hit with water bills that are double or even triple the normal rate. His granddaughter Trista LuAllen and up to 2,000 other households have seen their rates go way up, without any legitimate explanation from the North Lawrence Water Authority.

“When I got my water bill this month, I noticed that there was a significant increase. Last month, it was $21 and this month it was $61. That is triple the price and I called the water company and they could not give me an answer as to what the increase was for,” said LuAllen.

After we received dozens of questions and water bills from concerned viewers, CBS4 got the questions answered.

“We just got behind on reading meters. That is what happened,” said North Lawrence Water Authority General Manager Phil Hawkins.

Hawkins blames the big water bills on an internal issue. He said the North Lawrence Water Authority meter checker got way behind.

“She has to read 200 plus meters every day, 20 days a month,” said Hawkins.

The employee’s mistake led to people getting hit with several extra days added to this month’s water bill. The company is not sure how far behind the worker was before they found out.

Now, the eight employees who run the entire Water Authority for the county have to work together to figure out how many days have been added to each person’s bill. Then, they will either credit the people with a check of slash next month’s bill.

“It is a big mess, bear with me folks. We are going to fix it,” said Hawkins.

If you have been affected by this issue in Lawrence County, call (812) 279-2774.


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