It’s ironic that as we become more conscious about being “green” and conserving energy that many households are actually consuming less energy, but still paying significantly more for utility services. I have heard friends and neighbors gripe about DWP rate hikes & excessive DWP executive salaries, which typically lulls me into an apathetic trance, but I finally WOKE UP when a fellow Baldwin Hills resident brought to my attention the serious operational & billing issues DWP is currently experiencing with the roll out of a new billing system.
Some customers are being overcharged while others are not being billed at all (only to be surprised by a whopping cumulative bill that they are likely unprepared to pay). According to DWP only 5% of their customers are affected by this new billing system debacle, but for some reason this news really hit home with me as a reality check on the unjustified faith I place with the utility companies to monitor and bill for my energy consumption. How much electricity do we really use & have I been paying for the electricity actually consumed in my household or what the meter reader “guesstimated” from his or her 40-foot “read” of our meter (an incredible account of a recent experience with DWP from another Baldwin Hills neighbor)? The answer is that I really have no idea how many “kilowatt-hours” of electricity are typically being used in my household…nor what a kilowatt-hour is for that matter. This epiphany made me think back to our January HOA Meeting where a LADWP outreach representative distributed brochures, which detailed information about READING YOUR OWN METER (among other useful topics like energy conservation & rebates). I don’t even buy groceries without checking the bill to make sure the cashier didn’t double charge me for a box of cereal, so why am I placing this blind trust in DWP for utility charges that account for a significantly higher percentage of my household expenses? Let’s learn to read our own DWP electricity meters to make sure we are not getting gouged! If you suspect you have issues with your DWP bill, contact DWP online or call 1-800-DIAL-DWP. Click here for more information about DWP billing issues.