TN: Computer glitch sends water bills twice to 8,000 : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Tuesday, 08/07/01

Computer glitch sends water bills twice to 8,000 By ANNE PAINE Staff Writer

About 8,000 Metro Water Services customers have been seeing double.

They received their monthly bill twice. Another 8,000 got their bill a few days late but will have extra time to pay it without racking up a late fee.

It was all a processing glitch, officials said yesterday.

''For anybody that pays the double amount, we would simply credit it on their account,'' said Bob Wingo, acting director of Metro Water Services.

The contractor that does the service's billing sent out the original notice on July 20 to 8,000 customers and then sent the same bill to the same people eight days later.

The bills are sent out in batches of 8,000 to the service's 150,000 customers.

Martha Segal, the water department's customer-services manager, said a tape with the billing information that is passed on to the contractor for some reason wasn't cleared of an old batch of names.

Who will pay for the mistake will be discussed with the contractor, she said.

The postage cost itself would have been about $2,000 at .255 cents a piece for the presorted, first-class mail.

Since the duplicates were mailed on a single day, another batch of bills to another 8,000 customers was delayed.

Anyone with a bill dated July 27 can take four extra days to pay without a late penalty, Segal said.

That means instead of having a deadline of Aug. 13 to pay as it says on the bill, these customers have through Aug. 17.

''If anyone has any question, they should just let us know,'' Segal said.

The number is 862-4695

-- Martin Thompson (, August 08, 2001

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