Thurmond to give update on water billing crisis

Posted by Mary Margaret Stewart May 16, 2017

Michael Thurmond. File photo obtained via Reporter Newspapers

DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond will be updating residents on the county’s water billing crisis on Tuesday, May 23, at 6:30 p.m.

This will be Thurmond’s second update about the issue and will be held held at Rehoboth Baptist Church at 2997 Lawrenceville Highway, Tucker, GA, 30084.

Those who miss the meeting will be able to tune in to Comcast Cable Channel 23 for DeKalb County citizens and can stream the meeting live at www.dekalbcountyga.gov/dctv.

More information can be found at www.dekalbcountyga.gov/waterbilling.

In February, Thurmond delivered a sobering assessment of what led to the current predicament. Some residents haven’t received bills for months, and other residents are getting enormous bills from the county.

Thurmond said there were numerous reasons for the problems, including damaged or lost meters, lack of staff training and what he described as “political interference in day-to-day operations” at the Water Department.

Thurmond said 37,000 bills had been withheld since the fall due to questions about their accuracy, meaning some customers went months without receiving one. The county Water Department has about 190,000 customers. Thurmond announced plans to improve service and billing accuracy, additional staff training and said the county would bring in a third-party mediator to handle disputes. Some residents found his plan lacking in details and want additional information.

The CEO recently announced plans to release 8,000 held water bills.

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