October 18, 2012

Resident accuses city of double dipping on bill

James Bright
The Express-Star

CHICKASHA — Chickasha resident Charles Bradley doesn't think he should have to pay his September water bill.

"The city is double dipping if I have to pay this bill," he said.

For the past two years Bradley has paid water and sewage at 1215 S. 12th Street even though his grandmother owned the property. His grandmother passed away two years ago.

Recently, Bradley has transferred most of the bills and information regarding the property to himself, which forced him to create a new water and sewage account costing him a $50 deposit and a $26 first month's fee.

What he said he finds unfair is that he has to pay for the last month on his Grandmother't account totaling $20.50.

"I've been living here for awhile and the city should charge me a prorated amount," he said.

Mayor Hank Ross said setting up a new account and closing an existing account in this manner is just how Chickasha does it. Typically one account holder will never have any interaction with another. This just happens to be a rare case where both accounts are managed by one client, so this does not constitute a case of double dipping by the city according to Ross.

Ross said he contacted City Manager Stewart Fairburn about coming up with a solution to this issue involving prorating.

Fairburn said bills are not calculated a flat rate, but charges based on gallon usage. According to Ross, both the establishment of the fee and the way it is charged are common practice in most cities.