Electricity bills reach thousands of dollars, residents believe new meters are to blame

Central Texas residents believe new 4G meters are to blame for thousand dollar energy bills
Published: Jul. 26, 2022 at 6:12 PM CDT
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MERIDIAN, Texas (KWTX) - Those living in Bosque County may want to check their electricity bill after residents report their kWh usage has increased by the thousands.

“If I was the only one in Meridian that had this problem, I’d say yes, I got an issue at my house, yes. But I’m not,” says Meridian resident, Herbert Rivero.

Many people living in central Texas are opening their electricity bills to find charges three to four times the amount they’re used to paying.

Rachel Walker opened her bill to find a $1,700 charge for July’s bill.

“Readings are just off the charts, all of these people using 1,000, 1,500 kWh are all of a sudden using 6,000, 7,000, 8,000, 9,000 and no usage has changed at all,” said Walker.

Last month, Walker’s usage was just above 1,500 kWh.

Now her meter is reporting sixty-five hundred kWh used for the month of July.

Now in a new billing cycle, Walker’s meter is reading over 3,000 kWh used in a four-day period.

If this continues, that’s over 25,000 kWh a month, meaning more than a $4,000 bill.

Those living in Meridian believe this is Texas New Mexico Power’s fault after the company swapped old 3G meters for new 4G meters.

In a statement to KWTX, Texas New Mexico Power said, “The hot weather and increased consumption are not caused by the replacement of the 3G meters.”

Those receiving these bills beg to differ, citing that their usage never increased until the installation of these new meters.

“My bill last month was $267. Two weeks ago, they put a smart meter in, I get my bill two days ago, it’s $1498.97,” said Hebert.

Meridian Mayor Ryan Nieuwenhuis says although TNMP can’t be blamed at this time, he does find the correlation suspicious.

“It just seems kind of odd to me that we had an upgrade on our electric system in our community and all of a sudden people are receiving super outrageous energy bills,” said Nieuwenhuis.

Residents who spoke to KWTX about these issues claim they were told by TNMP that the best they can do at this time is re-check the meters as they do not claim to be the cause for these increased bills.

TIP: Have an energy audit performed on your home to gauge energy efficiency. Compile previous bills pre-smart meter installation to bring to your energy provider when disputing the charges.

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