Customers Water Shut Off in Casitas Water District

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By an edhat reader

Since yesterday the Casitas Water Company has shut off over 100 people's water at their homes and businesses. There have been many complaints but not one answer.

The alleged reason it is being shut off is for non-payment, but many of them have received no bills for the past month because of a new company buying it out and no one from the company is responding. Also, many people were evacuated for the Thomas Fire and have not been home. 

People are saying things like this on Facebook:

"Those of us in the city of Ojai are newly on the Casitas water District services. Many of these people never received a bill until they received an overdue notice with late fees ...And some never even received a bill and are now having their water turned off"

From a mother of two: "We were about to get our water shut off for non-payment of a November bill that we never received. Casitas Water District said they tagged my door twice. Once last week as a warning to shut off and another tag earlier in the month because the bill was past due. Mind you these dates are all during the Thomas Fire crisis. They also informed me that a tag for past due is $20 and a tag for shutoff is $40 plus a late fee of $12 - they charged me $72 in tag and late fees. I told the operator that I was tagged during the fires and she had the gall to say the fires in Ojai were over last week .This is criminal."

"The person dropping off water shut off notices and a stack in his hand and pretty much went to all the neighbors. We've lived in our home for 20 years and never seen that before."

"$60 in fees for a $20 water bill"

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Eggs Ackley Jan 01, 2018 08:50 PM
Customers Water Shut Off in Casitas Water District

Some fake news here. Golden State, a private company, was forced to relinquish control by Casitas Municipal Water District, a public entity. Golden State was an abesentee owner maximizing profit by doing minimal maintenance on an aging infrastructure and responsible for flooding the town theatre and an adjacent restaurant. It has taken years to settle the lawsuit while the theatre and restaurant remain in a state of incomplete reconstruction.

a-1516700950 Dec 30, 2017 01:33 PM
Customers Water Shut Off in Casitas Water District

All of Faria Beach’s Water was shut off for about 24 hours, Dec 28-29. They said there was a leak in a water main. We didn’t see any workers anywhere in that time period. They continuously told us it would be fixed at different times throughout the day, then night, then next day. It was all so strange. Didn’t see a crew anywhere working on any pipes. Never heard of it taking 24 hours to fix leak in a pipe, and shut off the water for a whole community. Just thought I’d add our weird story.

a-1516700950 Dec 29, 2017 09:04 PM
Customers Water Shut Off in Casitas Water District

Tonight Channels 3 and 12 reported on the Casitas Water District turning off water meters of Ojai residents for unpaid bills. The district said it was "all a mistake". They are liars! When they bought out Golden State Water in a hostile takeover purchase, Golden State failed to provide Casitas Water with the billing addresses for of over 3,000 accounts. Casitas made no effort to get them! What did Casitas do? They sent the bills to the service address and not the proper billing addresses! Last week I got a phone call from their collection department, stating my bill was past due and water could be shut off. I had not received a bill and was away for almost three weeks. I immediately paid the bill by CC and though it was not revealed at the time, I was also charged $65.07 in late fees. I finally got a printed bill with all the details. I called them Wednesday and was told that over 3,000 accounts had no billing addresses because of the hostile take over. I was told that I would get a credit for the $65.07 "as a courtesy". I said that it could not be called a "courtesy credit" because they had screwed up by not getting billing addresses from Golden State and that they were returning my $65.07 and it was their fault that they had taken 3,000 plus accounts over without obtaining billing addresses, not mine. The lady's name is Shelby, and she was not willing to admit that they had acted unprofessionally with their half baked takeover. Many Ojai residents were in the same boat and then there was the fire to boot and they should not have lost water service and should receive credit for any unjust late charges. This is a public agency not willing to take the blame for screwing up.

MountainMan4865 Dec 29, 2017 09:10 PM
Customers Water Shut Off in Casitas Water District

There in lies the problem. It's not a "public agency". It's a private corporation that has taken over your water company. It NEEDS to be a public agency, and it can be. You just have to rattle enough cages and get a city council with a backbone to take them on.

420722 Dec 29, 2017 08:21 PM
Customers Water Shut Off in Casitas Water District

Corporations have been top priority long before trump became president but I will say it’s worse then ever now. This one however is just like mountain man said..them (the water company) seeing how much they can get away with. I say you all raise a little hell back at them and see if you can at least get the late fees dropped! Good luck and sympathies to you and yours for all you’ve been through this month.

MountainMan4865 Dec 29, 2017 07:46 PM
Customers Water Shut Off in Casitas Water District

Good grief. This has nothing to do with politics, but a corporation (yes) looking to see what they can get away with. The regulations for this, or the lack thereof, have been long in existence. The area should take over their ownership of their water. It has been done, there is recent precedent. I am no fan of that... person, sitting behind a desk, but to make him responsible for every issue that was already in existence, undermines any argument you might have against him. http://missoulian.com/news/local/montana-supreme-court-clears-way-for-city-s-mountain-water/article_3aa3936a-7b41-5fc2-b91e-48ecb16bee36.html http://missoulian.com/news/local/montana-supreme-court-clears-way-for-city-s-mountain-water/article_3aa3936a-7b41-5fc2-b91e-48ecb16bee36.html

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