Hawkinsville resident away on military duty comes home to high water bill, theft possible
PULASKI COUNTY, Ga. -- The Hawkinsville Water Department says a resident still needs to pay an abnormally high water bill after returning home from a month of service in the Army Reserves.
James "Mitch" Whitehead told WGXA that his daughter, who rents a home he owns in Pulaski County, discovered her usual $22 water bill had jumped to $159 in May.
His daughter was in Louisiana for most of May because of military duty and came home to find out her bill was around eight times higher than normal.
Whitehead contacted the Hawkinsville Water Department and requested a check of the water meter. The city determined the meter was functioning properly.
Hawkinsville City Manager Tim Young said there were no clear signs of a leak on the property, and suggested 49,000 gallons of water could have been used or stolen in May.
Whitehead says no water was left running for a month, and if the water was stolen, he wants the city to "do right" by his daughter and not force her to pay for water she didn't use while away on military duty.
Young says the city has set up a payment plan with the tenant, but says unfortunately the bill must be paid in full. Whitehead says the city told him there'd be "no exceptions" on paying the water bill.