One Woman Gets Billion-Dollar Utility Bill

October 19th, 2010 by Staff

ACWORTH, Ga. — Sometimes electricity bills can get pretty expensive, especially during the summer when air conditioners are running almost constantly, but one Georgia woman’s 10-digit power bill might set a record.

When Scarlett Hall sat down to pay her bills, she realized it was probably going to take quite a few Benjamins to pay a $1,016,500,130.09 dollar electricity bill.

Hall lives in an Acworth home with her husband and three children.

She’s had high power bills before, but nothing like this.

“Last month I pawned the title to my car to pay the light bill,” she said Tuesday. “Now, I think I might need to start selling organs.”

Knowing this bill had to be a mistake, Hall called Cobb Energy.

“She started laughing and laughing,” she said describing the customer servicerepresentative’s response. “Then out of the blue, she goes ‘I’m sorry ma’am. That just caught me off guard.’ And I said ‘Yeah, me too!’”

Hall said the customer service rep was able to correct the bill, bringing it down to a more reasonable and accurate $287.

“We have an edit system that allows us to take any abnormal bills or oversized bills like that,” said CobbEMC Vice President of Public Relations Sam Kelly. “It brings it to our attention. We’re able to catch it. That’s how we were able to catch it last week.”

Owing over $1 billion is an unsettling situation, and one Hall is happy to have fixed.

“We appreciate Ms. Hall’s patience and understanding with this because this is something that very rarely happens,” Kelly said.

The average homeowner’s electricity bill is around $100 according to the folks at Cobb EMC, but, they say some of their commercial clients run a monthly tab of tens of thousands of dollars.

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