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Karma WILL get you, make no mistake about it!
11:22 AM on 08/14/2012
That's outrageous! I'm glad they reimbursed her - but it seems to me she should have noticed those charges long before now? Never hurts to read the bill & question ANYTHING you don't understand!!
11:21 AM on 08/14/2012
I live in California and have always wondered-and called--as to why my electric bills were so high. I was always told to conserve it was because of the fridge or the pool filter or blah, blah, blah. Here in So Ca. we live pretty close together and at times the meter reader didn't bother to go up my driveway to read it, but used a scope from the neighbors yard. In the past year they have installed what they call smart meters which I think do away with the need for the meter reader. Well---------my bill has gone down well over a 100 bucks a month. Hummhhh, was I getter screwed on this???? I can't fight it-the city won't budge, and nothing in my home has changed. Let's see-a 100 a month over 30 years. A lot of money.
Leon Engelun
11:10 AM on 08/14/2012
I live in the country. 15 miles to the nearest store. 26 miles to the nearest town. Only lights on at night here are the two little solar lights on sticks in the back yard. My light bill is still over $100 a month. It is a minimum of $65 just to have the meter on the pole in my yard whether I use electricity or not.
11:25 AM on 08/14/2012
That sux
Emily is not amused.
11:29 AM on 08/14/2012
...That's absolutely crazy. It would be cheaper in the long run for you to look into solar energy.
10:57 AM on 08/14/2012
She is very lucky to have gotten that money back!
10:53 AM on 08/14/2012 wind......
11:06 AM on 08/14/2012
Unreliable, over the top expensive, takes up too much land and wind farms have raised area temperatures by an average of 3 degrees, kill migratory birds etc. Maybe getting the government OUT of the energy business and let private industry compete. They just might come up with something practical, affordable and will not suck money out of our economy.
Ideas are bulletproof
11:15 AM on 08/14/2012
Unless the Sun darkens, there will always be solar. And there is always winds. I just switched over to a new electric company. My bill is half of what is was.

It took me a long time to finally switch. I'm glad I did!!!
12:09 PM on 08/14/2012
The world won't stop using oil and gas until we find a substitute we can make just as much money off of. The reason renewable energy is stagnant is because no one wants something that you can't profit off of.

It's the same thing drug companies do these days. They don't look for cures, there's no money it that, instead they get paid to make treatments(especially ones that are addictive and need you to keep taking for it to work).

Bottom line is you take matters into your own hands and do everything you can to keep these companies from taking all of your money. No one wants just a slice of the pie, every company wants the whole pie, and if you give them it, you have nothing.
11:31 AM on 08/14/2012
Are you saying you're full of...wind?
10:50 AM on 08/14/2012
I pay $90.00 a year to have a streetlight near my home. I guess it depends where you live.
10:53 AM on 08/14/2012
My neighbor and I share the charge. If others on the street want their lights turned on at night, they have to pay for their own also.
11:33 AM on 08/14/2012
No, it depends on the contract you make with the power company. I pay nothing for my street lights.
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12:13 PM on 08/14/2012
The city likely approved it so they are the ones paying.
10:49 AM on 08/14/2012
Our city is now charging homeowners for street lights....they took it out of the property tax base and now call it a special assessment to the property....they've raised taxes for a library, shrinking teachers fund (whatever that is) and passed a millage for The Detroit Art Center. Where will it all end with taxes is my question; when government is bigger then those paying for it !
10:40 AM on 08/14/2012
In North Carolina, on a 10 house cul-de-sac, we had a choice... Either we all chip in and pay for the 3 street lights or they turn them off (and if only 1 said 'yea' then it was 'yea'). Someone wanted them on so we pay. But those complaining... are you assuming the power company will light your street and maintain these poles and bulbs for free? You must be liberals!
10:50 AM on 08/14/2012
ours come out of our property tax.....your city must still be in the dark ages.....
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I'd agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.
11:09 AM on 08/14/2012
Sounds like the 'someone' who didn't want them on is you. You'd rather forego the safety of your children and others in the neighborhood for the sake of a few extra bucks. Street lighting helps prevent accidents, rapes and robberies but since you live on the almighty cul-de-sac your less-than-liberal thinking must be that none of that can occur there. And one certainly does not have to be as brilliant as you to know that somehow, somewhere down the line we are all paying for the convenience and safety of having a streetlight nearby.
11:28 AM on 08/14/2012
"And one certainly does not have to be as brilliant as you"

Someone's nasty in the morning lol
If cars could run on cognitive dissonance ...
10:40 AM on 08/14/2012
I had a solar system installed on my house about 12 years ago and my bill went up. I kept calling PSE&G (NJ) and they sent "engineers" out to look at it (I was one of the first with the bidirectional meters). I kept having to explain to their guys how solar works (they had problems with understanding the difference between DC and AC). After three meters I finally got one that actually correctly worked. They were charging me for the electricity that I generated, instead of crediting it to me. I sent them weekly spreadsheet updates with charts and graphs in excel to harrass them until they relented. They ultimately did and I got a refund. But boy is it frustrating!
11:42 AM on 08/14/2012
I spoke with the actual first net metering customer here in San Antonio. I think he installed his system in the late 90's. He called City Public Service to alert them that he was going to be switching his system on and whoever he got at the customer service desk said "ok". That started a 2 month period during which CPS replaced his electric meter 8 times because of "negative readings". CPS eventually caught on and gave him a certificate of appreciation and a working meter plus they updated their accounting software to correctly process net metering customers.
10:29 AM on 08/14/2012
Help me out here. "The bills included line items for "9500 Lumen HP Sodium" and "6300 Lumen HP Sodium" – two sodium vapor streetlights." Da... why in heaven's name didn't she ask what that meant?
12:48 PM on 08/14/2012
It's not easy for anybody the comprehend a utility bill.
A local TV station had a segment about telephone bills.
They had an actual brain surgeon and a rocket scientist,
and neither one could make sense of the charges.
08:38 AM on 08/15/2012
Some unsolicited advice, if you need brain surgery stay away from that doctor.
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10:19 AM on 08/14/2012
sounds like something california would do
10:32 AM on 08/14/2012
Also Florida
10:10 AM on 08/14/2012
Why is it that these government utilities often refuse to do the right thing until they're coerced? We do own them, don't we?
10:50 AM on 08/14/2012
Not really, if we did it would be run correctly.
Elections are decided by those who bother to vote
11:44 AM on 08/14/2012
a private utility company OTOH would not only not have refunded her money, they would have billed her for the time they spent figuring out they were wrong
11:08 AM on 08/14/2012
LOL and people think Obamacare will be run correctly. This is a couple of streetlights and the government can't handle it.
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getting older and wiser....
11:56 AM on 08/14/2012
This is a private company....
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10:00 AM on 08/14/2012
I'm a land developer who was forced to sign a service contract with Progress Energy on a new subdivision of mine. I say "forced" because they refused me service unless I signed the agreement stating I had 5 yrs. to build so many new occupied homes in my new subdivision or had to pay them for their infrastructure. As we all know what happened to the housing industry, I was stuck in not complying due to national circumstances & they made me pay them $72,000.00 for an infrastructure they're making money off of. For 30 yrs. I've helped build their service area which they have a monopoly on & this is how they repay those who make them. They only made $900 million in profit last yr. Maybe I should take this lady's lead in contacting my state's consumer council..
11:24 AM on 08/14/2012
You should have to pay for the infrastructure because it is YOU and other developers that impact the area by building more houses that create more need for water, sewer, electric, cable, increased traffic which usually requires widening the street, more police, more firemen, more schools being built, more teachers etc. Usually, the developers and politicians get together and pat each other on the back and let the homeowners pick up the tab with higher taxes caused by the additional services needed for others.
Emily is not amused.
11:36 AM on 08/14/2012
...Sure, but the added revenue in property taxes are supposed to cover the additional drain on services. Those new homes built will contribute to the tax load of the town, much more than if it was undeveloped or unused property. Towns are ALWAYS on the side of progress if it means they will be able to tax new homes and properties.
11:37 AM on 08/14/2012
You're totally oblivious. Out of my pocket I've paid for & added millions in infrastructure the county has tapped into & added others on those paid for lines out of my pocket. I'm personally responsible for adding approx. $600k annually to the tax assessor's books for probably the next century which more than pays for services they're involved with.

What have you contributed?
12:18 PM on 08/14/2012
When it comes to money, almost every company in this country figure out a way to steal money from anyone the can. Whether it is the phone company, the water works, or gas and electric, they all figure out ways to add on whatever they can. If you catch them, they say sorry, we made a mistake if your lucky. The utility companies should be treated like anyone else and if they are stealing and cheating people, arrest them.
09:58 AM on 08/14/2012
Fighting utilities, where there is no competition, is more difficult than having root canals on all your teeth, at the same time. They are imbued with the attitude that they are above it all and the process for a customer to get what is due him/her should be more difficult than going to the moon in a home made rocket.