CenterPoint Customer Receives $1,000 Bill - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

3/25/05-Tyler

CenterPoint Customer Receives $1,000 Bill

Spring is here and warmer temperatures have hit the area.
However, some CenterPoint Energy customers are still feeling the effects of winter gas spikes.
One East Texan received an unpleasant surprise when he opened a bill 39 times as much as his last bill.
"I opened my bill I just couldn't believe it," William Muscato said.
William said it was like someone knocked the breath out of him. "It just shocked me," he said.
He opened his CenterPoint bill and saw four digits behind the dollar sign.
"It was a bill for a thousand, over a thousand dollars," he said.
With a few deductions for past payments the bill dropped, to $944.
"I'm a self employed person and I've got taxes and year-end expenses and all of a sudden I've got a thousand dollar gas bill on top of that."
A double-duty bill for a single man. Especially when his bill was $24 last month.
"I think I've got the highest bill in East Texas," he said. So he called CenterPoint for answers.
"She said if you look over in the left hand side of the page it says 'EST' and that means the bill was estimated. I had no knowledge that these were just estimated charges."
His bills in the winter average between $50 to $90.
Most of the house is electric except the heater. "I don't run my furnace that much."
Because of a gate at his home William fills out a card for a meter reading and sends it to the company. However, CenterPoint workers still come out to monitor his usage. The length of his billing cycles have varied.
"This one was 21, this one was 37 days, this one was 34 days," William said flipping through his bill statements.
He's seen bills as low as $3.95. He said the company told him he had been double billed and that's why the charge was so low. Then came this months bill.
"They didn't offer to have anyone read my meter, nobody to check it for leaks."
William said he's just wondering what surprises may come with next month's bill.
Since he doesn't want the utility bill to affect his credit rating, he will pay up.

Maya Golden reporting, mgolden@kltv.com

Powered by Frankly