Action 9 helps family with unexplainable $4,000 water bill

CHARLOTTE — A Charlotte family says their monthly water bill was more than $4,000, which is 60 times more than they usually pay.

Viren and Mohana Joglekar showed Action 9′s Jason Stoogenke about three years of water bills. They usually spend about $60 or $70 each month. Then they got one for $4,167.

“(Mohana) saw the bill and she yelled at me (asking) what I was doing?” Viren said jokingly.

They both knew it wasn’t really his fault, so he called Charlotte Water.

“They came. They verified that the meter was running fine and there were no leaks,” he said.

He says the utility still didn’t adjust his bill so he refused to pay, kept fighting it, and kept getting the runaround.

“I had to call them about 7 to 10 times, repeating the whole story,” he said.

Viren said they pushed him to go on a payment plan. “I said, ‘OK I will go on a payment plan, but I do not like the solution. I still want an investigation to be done.’”

That’s when he contacted Action 9 and Stoogenke emailed Charlotte Water.

The utility said it wouldn’t “discuss details about individual billing or payment information” for privacy reasons. But it did confirm it was working on a “resolution” for the Joglekars and is “committed to delivering excellent water and wastewater services as well as accurate billing for our customers.”

“Next thing I know, I got a call from (the) finance department, saying that they have just sent next month’s bill and they have adjusted the bill, and they have waived the $4,000,” Mohana said.

He says they ended up having to pay around $100, which is pretty typical for them.

Stoogenke offers this advice to customers who get a utility bill that seems extreme:

  • Keep good records.
  • Be persistent. Charlotte Water told Stoogenke that in some cases an investigation can take multiple visits and extra monitoring.
  • If all else fails, contact Action 9.

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