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Charlotte Area

CMUD commits to investigate more suspicious water bills

http://66.225.205.104/JR20100129a.mp3

People who see a surprising spike in their water bills should find the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utilities Department a little more responsive to their concerns from now on. WFAE's Julie Rose explains: Last fall, 32 people in the same Cornelius neighborhood complained of water bills that were three and four times the usual amount. They suspected their water meters had malfunctioned, but Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utilities checked the meters and said all but one worked just fine. Call a plumber, the department suggested. In the last few months similar complaints have surfaced all over and Charlotte Mecklenburg Utilities spokesman Vic Simpson says the department has some work to do repairing its reputation with customers. He says several staff have now been reassigned to investigate water bills. The department has also approved overtime for those investigators and plans to bring on extra consultants. Still, Simpson says the bills are accurate more than 99 percent of the time and are typically a result of lawn watering or a leaky pipe.