Recent weather woes: Utility company offers solutions to higher bill

Kemp said they do have payment options for those who may need it.

STARKVILLE, Miss. (WCBI) – While staying warm was a top priority for many during last week’s icy weather, that extended stay at home may cost you more this billing cycle.

Starkville Utilities Manager Edward Kemp said last week’s “icemageddon” had several people cooped up inside and dripping faucets to prevent pipes from bursting.

“We had some very extreme temperatures the last week or so, very cold temperatures as everybody knew into the single digits. The wind chill is close to zero. You couple that also with a lot of people being at home all throughout the day. A lot of the schools were closed so people are going to experience some high bills just because of the higher amount of electrical usage during that time period,” Kemp said.

With the dangerous ice on the roads, several businesses shut their doors temporarily, causing people to extend their stay at home cutting into their paychecks.

Kemp said they do have payment options for those who may need it.

“For those who are having difficulty paying, we can do a two-week extension to give them a little more time to get the resources that they need. The other thing that we try to recommend to individuals is to take advantage of our levelized billing. A levelized billing is a rolling twelve-month average bill usage. So what it does is it kinda shaves the peaks and the valleys. So in the spring and the fall months when the electrical usage may be a little bit less you’re paying a little bit more but what it also does is take down the high peaks in the summer and in the winter and makes it more of a consistent bill that you can base a budget off of,” Kemp said.

Kemp said taking steps before the winter weather hit helped their system stay on track and their customers comfortable.

“Some held up very well during those very peak demand times which we were very happy about we did a lot of preparation in advance so that both of the electrical and on the water side. We did have a few small water breaks or water leaks and small localized outages but nothing significant for our system. I think it is a testament to investments that we’ve made over the years in the system as well as the preparation that our team did in advance of that storm,” Kemp said.

The manager said they have an outstanding team that is dedicated to their customers.

For those who may need assistance options, you can contact Starkville Utilities by phone, email, or visit their office.

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