The Gist: Some Cobb County residents may get their water bill late this month and could see a higher-than-usual water bill.
What happened?: Cobb Water’s contracted meter reading vendor is experiencing a staffing shortage. The holiday breaks and the extreme weather experienced over the past few weeks added to the work force issues of reduced staffing and inexperienced staff has delayed the county’s typical 28 to 32-day billing cycle.
What is being done to fix the issue?: On your statement, the “A” under “PRESENT READING “present reading” means an actual reading took place. However, if the meter isn’t accessible, sometimes an estimate is used.
Due to vendor issues, county officials are estimating usage on more routes than usual to avoid further delays and to prevent longer-than-typical meter reading cycles. When usage is estimated, the statement will have an “E” under “present reading” to indicate that the reading was estimated.
County officials say residents will not be charged a late fee is they haven’t received a bill yet.
What to do if you haven’t received your bill: If you haven’t received your bill, you can go to the customer portal to see if your bill was issued and if you owe anything:
If your typical due date is approaching and you are on a fixed income, then you may want to go ahead and pay an amount similar to your typical monthly bill. This will help offset any increase from the longer billing cycle.
Higher Bills: Some billing routes are running up to 10 days late, resulting in customers being billed for a longer billing cycle of 38 to 42 days. When the billing period is extended customers are still only charged for water and sewer that they actually used.
While an extended billing cycle may result in a higher-than-normal bill, there is usually a billing period that is shorter than normal within a few months resulting in a lower-than-normal bill.
The consumption range for the Tier Two water rate is 4,000-15,000 gallons, so the longer billing cycle will not cause most customers to pay more per 1,000 gallons of water used. Customers consistently using 3,000 gallons/month or less may be charged at a higher tier rate than usual for part of the consumption.
If your monthly consumption is consistently 3,000 gallons or less and the extended billing period causes your consumption to increase to 4,000 or more, you might be eligible for a small credit of $1.90 per 1,000 gallons charged at the Tier Two rate, which is the difference between the Tier Two and Tier One rates. To request a tier rate credit, please contact Cobb Water via email at firstname.lastname@example.org,