Politics & Government

Did your water bill double? City of Wichita may have an explanation

Wichita’s water-treatment plant.
Wichita’s water-treatment plant. File photo

The city of Wichita doubled-billed 1,400 customers for their water and sewer service this month because of a printing error, a city public works official confirmed Friday.

Affected customers will be getting a corrected bill and a letter of apology from the city, to be mailed on Monday, said LaShonda Garnes, operations manager for the city’s Utilities Department.

Blame it on the printer.

“There was one batch (of bills) that had a bill-print error,” Garnes said. “All of the account information (in the computer system) is correct. The bill print doubled the charges.”

Wichita resident Jo Andrews said she was astonished when her water bill came on Friday and it was twice as much as it usually is.

“My bill’s always $46, $46.50, or something like that,” she said. “Today I got my bill and it was 90-something.”

She said she compared bills with some of her neighbors in the Delano area, and they all seemed to be about twice as high as normal. Her husband called the Water Department and was told there was a billing problem, she said.

Garnes said the problem is isolated to one batch of bills printed and mailed on Sept. 25.

The city uses an outside vendor for the bill printing and is investigating to determine why the error occurred and how to prevent it in the future, Garnes said.

Dion Lefler: 316-268-6527, @DionKansas