With mixed reviews, Perry community jumps into future with 24/7 bill kiosk


    Images courtesy: City of Perry/MGN

    PERRY, Ga. -- Perry residents have a new way of paying their city utility bills -- and its gotten some mixed reviews from the community.

    The bill kiosk, named JACK, made its way to Perry City Hall in January. City officials said residents can now pay their bills 24 hours per day, seven days a week via debit, credit, cash or check through JACK at 1211 Washington St. in Perry.

    JACK reportedly only accepts bills and can't give change, but if someone overpays that will be used as a credit towards their next bill.

    City officials said anyone who needs help navigating JACK can request in-person customer service during regular business hours or call a support number shown on the kiosk after hours.

    Robert Smith says he's used JACK a few times. He approves the upgrade.

    "I've had an excellent experience with it, i mean its just as easy as using an ATM," Smith said."I like it because it provides you with a bunch of information about your actual account, kind of what's going on. And then it allows you options in regards of how you want to pay for it. You know, I don't really carry cash or checks or that type of stuff, so being able to pay with a card, pulling up in your vehicle is super convenient for me"

    Assistant finance director Mitchell Worthington said the new form of payment will help people pay on time.

    "The thing about the automated kiosk is the ability for people to get automatic credit on their account in real time. With the previous drop box as I was saying, you didn't get credit on the account for paying until the next morning or if it was on the weekend it would be the next business day which would be Monday," Worthington said.

    Worthington said he's heard from some people who aren't fond of the change, but the numbers show it's successful.

    "As of about 3 p.m. this afternoon since the implementation, which like I said is about a month, a month and a half ago, we had 299 transactions for a total of about $42,000," said Worthington.

    Benny Williams has lived in Perry his whole life and said he's always paid his bills face-to-face out of safety.

    "I'm so old school, I've got to get used to other systems, but I'm so old school I think it's safe to go in there right now to pay my bill," Williams said.

    Despite his hesitation, Williams said he's open to learning the new technology. "I gotta get used to that system sometime to see how that works," he added.

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