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Atlanta Homeowners Get City Hall Action on Water Bills | News

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Atlanta Homeowners Get City Hall Action on Water Bills
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ATLANTA -- Looking for answers on why Atlanta water bills have doubled and tripled, angry and frustrated homeowners from 10 Buckhead communities took their issues to City Hall and the Mayor's Office.

The homeowners met for more than two hours Monday night with Atlanta Watershed Commissioner Rob Hunter, and many say they just got round-about and indirect answers.

After an hour long meeting Thursday at City Hall, Atlanta's Chief Operating Officer Peter Aman says the Mayors Office is now taking a direct role is what's happening to homeowner water bills and meter readings.

"I am personally leading this initiative to develop a new plan for Watershed. I will be personally supervising and involved," Aman said.

"We clearly are not delivering the level of service to our citizens that they deserve and there is no question that the City is going to make an aggressive attempt to figure out what is going on," he added.

Aman says the Mayors Office is investigating putting an outside auditor in place at Watershed to figure out billing and other issues, but in the meantime his office is wasting no time in addressing homeowner issues.

"We will launch an initiative and a strike team to attack the issues and understand whats happening and fix it," he said.

And Aman says immediate steps are being taken to enforce a Watershed policy so homeowners don't have to pay disputed bills.

"We will make sure our current policies of not requiring homeowners to pay bills on contested amounts are in place, and if there is a spike they don't have to pay the difference," he said.

Aman also says steps are being taken to speed up the appeals process, and to set up personal visits with homeowners to check meter accuracy.

Wildwood community homeowner Bill Lucas, who spearheaded the homeowner meetings with Commissioner Hunter and Aman, represented the 10 communities at City Hall.

"In a few short weeks and especially with your help and WXIA, we have managed to bring this to a head and now we are getting something done," Lucas said.

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