Some Laurinburg residents say power bills are too high
Several residents in Laurinburg contacted ABC 15 saying their power bills for the month of March are too high and they could barely afford to pay them.
Latoya Monique Adams said her bill was nearly $800. Adams said she hasn't really used a lot of heat or air conditioning and can't understand why the bill is so high.
"I'm not used to paying that type of amount in a light bill. And also, I've been living in my residence for like three years. And I've never had a light bill that high," said Adams.
Shahiree Covington's bill was more than $500 for the month of March. Covington said she's pretty upset about the higher bill because it nearly broke her.
"Why is it almost every time you turn around it's either going up or go down a little bit. But you can't explain to me nothing at all," said Covington.
Another neighbor said her bill was $347, which is a lot less than some of her neighbors, but it's still a lot higher than what she usually pays for her power bills.
We went to Laurinburg City Manager Charles Nichols with the viewers' concerns. Nichols said overall power bills were down in the month of March for residents of Laurinburg.
Nichols sent us information of the city's electric rate history over the past 13 years. The last increase was on January 20, 2015 at 3.5%.
However, in the past two years the city has decreased electric rates by nearly 11%.
Nichols also provided us with rate comparison of other areas in similar to Laurinburg's size and population as it relates to electric rates, showing Laurinburg is lower than Pee Dee Electric and Lumberton. It shows the city is about even with Duke and Lumbee Electric.
Nichols said the power bills are also combined with water and sewer bills and maybe some residents have a water leak that could be causing their bills to go up.
He added anyone with concerns about their power bills should call the city's consumer billing department or call him at 910-276-8257.
Nichols said in some cases, your bill may be adjusted.