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FULL STORY: Man's Electric Bill Skyrocketed

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POSTED: Friday, February 25, 2011 - 7:14pm

UPDATED: Tuesday, March 1, 2011 - 6:43pm

EL PASO - When a man in the lower valley saw his most recent electric bill, it was more than double what is usually is. He thought it was because of the winter freeze, but it turns out, it was human error.

El Paso Electric says an employee read Edward Stevens 'meter incorrectly and didn't mean to charge him that much. They say the issue has been resolved, but now Stevens is wondering if it's happening to others.

"It's not consistent, something's wrong here," Stevens said about his bill.

It was $154, more than double what he paid the previous month.

"It shows a lot of inconsistency where sometimes they were charging me $70 one month and $40 another month," he said.

When he called El Paso Electric, they said it was his fault
.
"Well theres someone else apart from your family living at your home that the bill went up that high; no one else its only my wife, me and my two kids," Stevens said.

Finally, El Paso Electric realized they'd made a mistake.

"There was a problem with the reading the first time, we corrected that, and a new bill was re-issued," said Teresa Souza, spokesperson for EP electric.

She says she doesn't know how often the meters are misread, but we asked her how they can be sure this is an isolated incident.

"If it's extraordinarily high and they know they haven't used that much electricity the previous month they should probably give us a call," she said.

Souza also says EP Electric can't change the rate unless they get it pre-approved by the Public Utility Commission of Texas.

But Stevens says if he hadn't spoken up, he'd be paying $100 more than he should.

"I have a feeling I'm not the only one in this kind of case right now," he said.

If you also find yourself in this situation, let us know about it. Send us a message at: http://www.ktsm.com/contact.

Comments News Comments

Keep track of your meters see if they are estimating your bill or getting an actual read. Alot of meter readers in gas or electric companies will estimate if they have no access to the meter or are being lazy and dont want to read it. So you might have a high bill one month because they over estimated and the next month will be alot lower if they get the actual read so it will balance out in the end. But like i said keep track of your own meter so you can call them out if they are robbing you.

Why is EPEC the only company that offers electricity to EP? EPEC knows this so in end what are you gonna do? There isn't anyone else you can turn to for electricity so they will black ball you all they want because you can't go anywhere else.

Time for some competitors to make EPEC understand, customers won't put up with their horse s***.

EP coucil needs to stop getting kickbacks and let other competitors in.

since they are the only game in town, they know there is nothing we can do and believe me they all have that attitude
WAKE up El Paso! Let's make them accountable and shrink there heads back to a normal size.

EP Electric hater

They also did this to us about a year ago. They were implementing a "new system" they said. I freaked when I opened my bill and saw it read $700+ We are a business so its usually higher than residential but usually around $200 - $250. YIKES! I wonder how often this happens to others?

I've worked for an electricity company in East Texas before. If you feel like your meter has been misread, you can call EP Electric and request a Meter Test. This test will help see if your meter is reading too fast, or two slow, causing higher or lower bills. The bad part about this is it could be found that your meter is not recording usage accurately, and you can be charged for usage not previously picked up. Or, it could be running slowly and you can get the overcharge returned!

I recived a 336.44 bill and was told thats what it was and no one helped me out. I own a 1600 square foot home and we are only 3 people. and this is before the freeze. How can I get help?

WOW, That's really crazy.

We were on vacation a couple of years ago , out of the country for 3 weeks , no one was in our house, and everything was turned off.

When we returned our electric bill only went down $7.00, we called El Paso Electric and they gave us the same tap dance song.

Terry

Aw, c'mon, the meter reader can't be THAT accurate driving by your house at 20 mph. They just tack on $20 to each bill to make up the difference, plus help pay for the Hollywood-style TV commercials, and their sponsoring concerts, sports events, and stuff like this website. Just wait until you start paying for the $80 Million new plant since the old one died in the cold.

my electric bill is also much higher than than usual, it's ridiculous how it fluctuates from one month to the next.

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