Woman Claims TXU Improperly Billed Her For Two Months - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

10/12/05-Tyler

Woman Claims TXU Improperly Billed Her For Two Months

More and more TXU customers are contacting us every day, claiming discrepancies and errors on their electric bills. A Smith County woman says TXU is dead wrong when they billed her for three times the electricity usage from just the month before. The bill came in early last month. Fairy Barnes says she couldn't believe her eyes.

"I was shocked. I told my husband about, and I was hoping that I could call someone to get some help because I knew it couldn't have been a thousand dollars," she says.

Barnes says she never got a July billing from TXU. Then, August's bill came with the amount due sky high.  The last small electricity bill was back in June when Barnes says her grandkids were at her home, using a lot of electricity.

The astronomical bills of several times normal are for July and August. And in August, she says she and her husband were at the hospital many days visiting her mother-in-law.

"At least twenty days of that month, we weren't really here. So I don't understand why it's that high," she says.

Barnes claims TXU told her they estimated her usage from June through August because the readers couldn't get in the yard.

"I asked 'why?' I was told that I had a pit bull in the backyard. And I told them I've never had a pit bull," she says.

Barnes only has pictures of the small dog she had more than two years ago. On her bill, Barnes says there was a big spike last December when her heating system wasn't working properly.  But now, she is certain everything is fine.  And TXU's billing is wrong.

But with no options, she's paying TXU with an installment plan.

"And they told me if I missed a month, they would turn the lights off immediately.  I don't know what my options are, just pray about it."  

A TXU spokesperson said Wednesday afternoon they'll be looking at the meter on the home to make sure it's functioning, and will work with Ms. Barnes to make sure the lights aren't turned off.

Also, the utility says Barnes' July bill was an estimate, and was later adjusted upward after the meter was read.  

Reported by Morgan Palmer.

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