ALABAMA POWER OFFICIALS ADDRESS HIGH POWER BILL COMPLAINTS

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West Alabama residents have been flooding WVUA 23’s phones and Facebook messages with one big complaint: January’s power bill.

This winter has been on the cold side, especially compared to last year’s mild season, but many residents say the temperatures haven’t been cold enough for such a sudden spike — in some cases, more than double.

“There is an expected higher power bill this month, and that will probably continue for a little bit,” said Anna Catherine Robinson with Alabama Power.

One customer showed us a December bill of $312 and a January bill for $514, a $202 increase. That’s a much higher spike than anything they’d seen before.

“I think it has been a little bit of a surprise for people to see,”  Robinson said. “Utility bills in general are a bit higher than they have been in the past.”

Alabama Power customer April Dancy said a huge bill isn’t a great way to start off the year.

“When I first saw my bill, I was shocked,” she said. “It had up more than $200-something. I know we had snow, but I did not anticipate my bill going up that high.”

For those who are in need of assistance, several agencies in West Alabama are doing what they can to help.

“We’re getting more calls daily now for services because people are in need,” said Temporary Emergency Services Executive Director Karen Thompson.

And Alabama Power said it’s aware that sticker shock may result in delayed payments.

“We have a number of resources,” Robinson said. “Calling your customer service line is a great place to start. We want to work with customers and want to find a way. We can set up payment arrangements and make it feasible for the customer.”

Learn more about your power usage by visiting alabamapower.com/mypowerusage. Alabama Power also offers a budget billing option that averages out your bills over the course of several months, so huge spikes won’t be as noticeable. You can sign up right here.

If you’d like help reading your bill or need personal assistance, call 800-245-2244, or visit your local Alabama Power office.

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