JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – A number of Jackson neighbors spoke out about issues with their water bills at a town hall on Monday, May 23.
Several neighbors said they haven’t received a water bill in months. Others said their bill increased by thousands of dollars in just one month.
Another major issue discussed was people not having their water meters replaced.
Carla Dazet, with Sustainability Partners, said about 16,000 new meters have been installed since the company began replacing the old ones in February. However, neighbors said Sustainability Partners has been skipping over dozens of homes.
According to the company, their data on homes with active water accounts is based on old data from Siemens. Dazet said they’re working to update it.
Sustainability Partners also recommended that neighbors with billing issues look into payment plan options since the city can not completely clear a water bill.
Some said they’re worried that a payment plan may force them to pay more than they actually owe.
“My bill went from $68 to $3,500, and I really don’t know what it is now because I haven’t been receiving a bill,” said Kathy Robinson, who lives in South Jackson. “I’m really pursuing trying to get this straightened out because I think it’s ridiculous to jump so high, and I cannot pay that.”
“Some people are getting a bill that’s too high. Others not getting a bill at all, and they’re supposed to get a bill. So, you’re making a few try to pay for many,” said Councilman Kenneth Stokes. “Most people in here, we buy water. So if we’re buying what that means, we’re using less water. So why are our bills so high?”
Stokes called issues with the city’s water and billing a crisis. He said he will host another town hall in a few weeks. He wants to invite city officials that have the power to adjust water bills to address everyone’s concerns.