Report: DeKalb’s decisions heightened water billing crisis

Matt and Star McKenizie, with newborn son Everett, were among DeKalb residents demanding answers about excessively high water bills during a town hall meeting at the Maloof Auditorium in Decatur on Nov. 10.  Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com
Matt and Star McKenizie, with newborn son Everett, were among DeKalb residents demanding answers about excessively high water bills during a town hall meeting at the Maloof Auditorium in Decatur on Nov. 10. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com

In the scramble to correct high water bills in DeKalb County, government officials made it worse, according to an internal report.

Efforts to double-check bills for accuracy created backlogs. A decision to withhold questionable bills resulted in more than 28,000 customers missing bills since last fall. Attempts to upgrade to new water meters created confusion among meter readers.

They hope they are getting closer to getting answers about high water bills.

The county’s missteps are detailed in a 26-page report titled “Water Billing Analysis Summary,” obtained by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution under Georgia’s Open Records Act.

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Read the DeKalb Water Billing Analysis