Watauga asks residents to pay up after costly water bill glitch

- The city of Watauga is counting on its customers to recover from a costly glitch.

For the past six months, the city said it has been undercharging customers for water services. They were being charged the rate for seniors over 65.

The mistake cost the city an estimated $400,000 total.

A letter sent out to residents said they could see an increase in their water bills over the next six months. Residents told FOX4 the extra bill surprised them and they don't think they should be paying for the city's mistake. Most customers will owe $30 to $50 for the incorrect bills from July to December 2017.

“The city seems to have gone just fine for the last 6 or 7 months, I've heard nothing about any big deficiencies in our funds, so yes - they finally realized there's a mistake,” said resident George Nichols.

Watauga City Manager Andrea Gardner said fiscal budget had already been signed off on by the council, so the funds are still needed.

“We have certain contractual obligations the city is required to meet and that forced the decision, because of the potential future impact to our residents, to go ahead and back bill.” Garnder said.

The city is giving residents the option to pay back the difference on a monthly payment plan.

Watauga is north of Fort Worth. It has a population about 2,500 people.

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