Bucks County woman getting help with $41K water bill

    Many people have opened a utility bill that makes them mutter.  But one Bucks County woman’s bill has the whole town talking. Last week, Michael Bannon, the director of the Bucks County Consumer Protection Department, got a phone call. Aqua Pennsylvania had shut off an elderly Bristol woman’s water, citing nonpayment. “When we looked into it we realized that there was some kind of massive problem going on,” said Bannon. There was a leak. A really, really big leak. “A couple of olympic swimming pools were getting filled on a regular basis, and her monthly bill was close to $10,000 a month,” said Bannon. “It’s a lot of water.” The woman, Ruby Williams, knew there was a problem back in March, and got on a payment program to try to take care of the bills.

    But, said Bannon, “The water was coming out faster than she could ever hope to pay it off.” So, last Friday, Aqua shut her down. And the community reached out. The Bucks County Opportunity Council set up a donation fund to get the leak fixed, and even Aqua Pennsylvania has donated. Aqua’s also confirmed that William’s balance will be modified. “I’m very optimistic that this will turn out okay for Miss Williams,” said Bannon. Bannon describes Williams as a very nice woman who does a lot of volunteer work in her community.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.