WESTVILLE, Illinois (WCIA) – People in Westville say they are outraged after receiving abnormally high gas bills again after the severe winter hit the midwest in February.
The village’s natural gas supplier said the village would be committed for $ 1.2 million dollars. Gas customers in Westville have received letters explaining the high rates this month and are demanding action.
“We got a lot of calls today,” Mayor Mike Weese told WCIA. “Some are getting mad at the girls in the office, which – I wish they didn’t. It is not their fault. “
But whose fault is it? That is the question that customers and board members share. Weese says it’s not the village’s fault.
“This comes from Missouri and Texas, where the fields froze and gas increased,” said Weese.
Westville’s superintendent of gas and water, Michael Bennett, says the Missouri Public Utility Assistance did not warn the village that prices skyrocketed for several days in February.
“If we had been notified earlier, we would have disclosed it to the public to turn off their ovens, talked to companies and schools to turn off their ovens,” says Bennett. “It would have saved a lot of money.
Proceed to May.
Sandy Lawlyes found that her bills were declining; the latter was $ 100 above normal.
Instead, she received a letter saying she now owes $ 779 more in March.
“I didn’t know that a part-time gas user would have that kind of increase and, two months later, he would come back and say, ‘Oh, we charge less and now you owe a lot more,’ it’s outrageous,” she said.
Weese says the village actually applied in 2020 to break ties with the MPUA. The official division was then set for five years from now. But after all Westville has been through, Weese says he wants to speed up the process and leave in a year.
Gas commission officials say they are looking at how much it would cost other cities in the cooperative to shoulder the burden of what Westville would have paid. If Westville leaves early, they may not be reimbursed for the huge 2021 bills in the long run. The commission is awaiting the results of a federal investigation to see if prices were set fairly in February.
In the meantime, the village is asking people who may have trouble paying their bills to seek CAP financial help by calling 217-554-9100. The letters also encourage people to call their state representatives to fight the gas charges.