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Goleta Water Billing Issues Persist
updated: Mar 28, 2014, 10:20 AM

By Edhat Subscriber

Is anyone else having issues with Goleta Water trying to correct their billing problems? They just withdrew $150 from my account yesterday for usage last November, and are scheduled to take another $100 on Monday for December, and on April third, yet another $70 for January. I have no problem paying what I am due, but to charge a customer around $300 in a week, without warning, is a bit of a hardship on the pocketbook.

Comments in order of when they were received | (reverse order)

 COMMENT 506610 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 10:24 AM

YES!

 

 COMMENT 506619 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 10:31 AM

Yes! Unfortunately they're a lost cause though. I called and they explained they were past charges never billed. I said that that is their problem and we shouldn't be charged all of it in one week with no warning. They don't care! it's not like they ever skipped a month so I don't really understand the extra charges either. I'll pay what I owe, but geez get it together GOleta Water!

 

 COMMENT 506631 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 10:42 AM

Yeah and the timing is really bad--right before taxes and property taxes are due. I don't get it. We have paid our water bill every month for years--where did these missing months come from? Isn't properly billing your customers a basic requirement for running a business? And they can't even figure out how to bill their customers?

 

 JUKINJAY agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 10:47 AM

I was concerned because I hadn't received a water bill for about three months, then got three of them within two weeks. Total amount owed looks about right so I got a bit of extra time value of money (not worth much these days).

It looks like they switched vendors, account number is different and has enough digits for them to have several quintillion customers.

Regarding the OP's issue, I strongly advice against the "PULL" version of electronic billing where you allow any vendor to debit your account electronically.

Insist on a paper or electronic bill, and set up electronic banking with your bank so that you "PUSH" a payment to the vendor. Otherwise you wind up in the situation you have here.

Invariably a vendor's billing system will get wedged somehow. You look at your daily balance, thinking you have a lot of money in the bank. They then "fix the glitch" and drain your account. Or worse, they accidentally apply someone else's bill to your account and you get clobbered and start overdrafting.

Never allow a vendor to automatically debit your bank account without some action on your part for each and every transaction.

 

 COMMENT 506636 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 10:50 AM

This is such a scam. They know that many of their customers will not be able to afford to pay for half a years water bills all at once. Any penalties for late payment should be voided until the GWD gets their act together.

 

 COMMENT 506638 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 10:51 AM

Yes!! It's horrible. They are behind on billing, and because of that, they are sending multiple water bills at once or combining multiple months in one, making it extremely expensive and unaffordable for many customers. Very unfortunate.

 

 COMMENT 506641 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 10:54 AM

Same thing with City of SB water. We moved in 2011 to another house in SB and JUST received a bill that we owed $400+ from our previous address! I know I paid everything I owed when we moved and transferred service. Now I have to go back and pull old bank statements and get water bills from that time period that we lived in our previous house. Pain!

 

 COMMENT 506644 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 10:57 AM

I am amazed at how much money the district must have set aside, because it has been close to a year since their billing has made anything close to sense.

 

 COMMENT 506651 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 11:06 AM

Yes! and it's been ongoing for months now... very frustrating.

 

 COMMENT 506657P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 11:11 AM

Ditto.

 

 COMMENT 506662 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 11:16 AM

Ditto, too!

 

 COMMENT 506663P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 11:19 AM

I was just in there today to enquire about my bill. The ladies at the counter are very helpful.

The district switched to a new billing system and like most software switchovers, there were delays. So, none of us got bills for three months. Then suddenly, three bills arrived within a couple of weeks. I went back through my check register and sure enough, I haven't paid a water bill in three months.

They are not turning off anyone's service or charging late fees. You're asked to pay the current bill and then pay off the past due balance as you are able.

This is a good wakeup call for the drought to make us mindful of our water consumption. The district is asking for a voluntary reduction of 20%. Hard to do if you're already economizing, but we fixed a leaky faucet and are trying a few other of the suggestions.

 

 COMMENT 506687 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 11:49 AM

I don't hear any complaints that people are charged for water that they didn't use. The water district is hurting because you didn't pay for three months service. OK - there is a communication issue. Your biggest worry should be the availability of water for the coming year.

 

 COMMENT 506688 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 11:52 AM

Hey think of it this way, you didn't have to pay your bill for a few months, now it's due. If you didn't see it as free service you would have set the money aside and earned interest on it during this time and not be complaining so much about paying something that you do owe for. If they aren't charging late fees and are willing to work with customers then I don't see what the fuss is all about. And YES, I also live in the Goleta Water District so I'm in the same situation... it's all money owed to them

 

 COMMENT 506693 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 11:55 AM

That's the thing 688 many of us DID receive a bill every month and are now getting 3 within days of each other...

 

 COMMENT 506707P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 12:23 PM

I have auto pay for Goleta Water. No bill or charges since the Novemeber to December bill. Nothing withdrawn either. They are now withdrawing these one bill at a time. The first one was withdrawn yesterday. And yes, the others will be about a week apart. I think of it as a free loan. Sorry all you who are opposed to auto pay for bills, but it has served me extremely well with no problems at all. Having to push a payment means that I have to keep close track and not end up with late payments. No thanks, I will stick to pull payments.

 

 COMMENT 506708 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 12:23 PM

I have never received a water bill. Moved in this place May 2013. They say they don't know when I'll ever get one.

 

 COMMENT 506709 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 12:24 PM

OP here; I have no problem paying for the water I have used, but to slap me with $300 worh of bills in one week, without notice, is not right. I am remodeling my kitchen and watching every dollar very right now. The ability to spread payment out a bit would have helped greatly.

 

 COMMENT 506715 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 12:33 PM

how f ed up

 

 COMMENT 506722 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 12:44 PM

I really wish the City of Goleta would take over the Goleta Water District.

 

 COMMENT 506723 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 12:45 PM

hey OP, why don't you call them and see if they will let you do smaller payments instead?

 

 COMMENT 506734P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 01:34 PM

#708 ... I am having the same problem. I moved into my home in October and finally called the water district in January because I had never received a bill. They said they could do an estimate for me and did sent me a piece of paper with an estimate for the initial service and three months water (Oct., Nov., and Dec.). I paid that but have not gotten anything since. I have called 3-4 times to find out what is happening and they told me they can't find me in the system and someone will call me back. No one ever does. I am saving my cancelled check in case I eventually be doubled charged. I am worried about eventually getting a huge water bill, but there doesn't seem to be anything I can do. Just pay what I can when I do get a bill and work out a payment plan for the balance.

 

 COMMENT 506738 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 01:48 PM

OP here, I called, they can't spread-out the payments unless I stop the auto-pay, which I really don't want to do right now. Just sucking it-up and transferring a few more dollars out of the "rainy day fund" - wow is that a sad term in Cali right now?!.

 

 COMMENT 506749 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 02:21 PM

Who in their right mind allows anyone to access their accounts automatically?

LADWP is in the news now because they erroneously tried to take 1000's out of accounts and people got nailed with overage fees from the bank. DWP is refusing to pay the fees even though it is clearly their fault 100%.

Use the bill pay feature from your bank to push the payments to the utility on your time. It's easy and protects you from idiot utilities and government agencies.

 

 FLICKA agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 02:31 PM

Sounds like a nightmare to be in Goleta. I like my paper Carpinteria Water bill; shows how much we used this year and last for comparison. If there is a problem getting one every month, why not set aside what you guess it will be so when a 3 month bill comes in you'll have the $$s ready.

 

 COMMENT 506753 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 02:32 PM

I happen to like autopay.

 

 COMMENT 506814P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 05:16 PM

@753
I think the point is that you can set up autopay on your bank's website. Then everything is under your control. You can suspend automatic payments when you need to. That's better than authorizing a company to automatically draw money from your account.

 

 COMMENT 506841 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-03-28 07:04 PM

I, too, received three water bills in the same week. The thing that really irritates me is that my water bills have tripled in cost compared to what they a year ago and my water consumption should be lower since I have low-flow everything. One of my neighbors said she received a bill saying she has a negative balance, and she was laughing because it's been about 4 months since she last received a bill. This highly indicates that something is wrong with GWD's billing system.

 

 COMMENT 509567 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-04-08 03:03 PM

We haven't received a bill since moving out of a small apartment into a house in July. Called several times to find out how much water we were using and how much we owe and finally in March received a breakdown. While we'd been setting aside money each month for our usage, we were absolutely shocked owe owe over $1500 to the water company, well above what we'd set aside. Very disheartening, if we'd had any idea we were using that level of water, we would have taken action...since receiving the usage, we've made drastic changes, upgraded drip irrigation, shorter showers, low flow toilets...wish we had been given the information before it got out of hand.

Very disappointing.

 

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