Southport trying to figure out why power bills have surged
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SOUTHPORT, NC (WWAY) -- Some Southport residents say their recent power bills have been as high as $800 a month. The city says it is trying to figure out what could be making bills skyrocket and how to fix the problem.

James Davis, Jr., has lived in Southport his entire life. He says his power bill is at least $800 to $900 every month. Davis says the city needs to check the new power boxes it recently installed.

"They need to come here and reassess the new boxes, number one," he said. "That hasn't made anything any better, and go back on the books and find their fault."

Davis says he's not the only one having these problems, and the city should know the stress they are causing the residents.

"You've overcharged every resident in this town, so you need to come back to the board and do what you're supposed to do right. Put the right light bill like you should be," Davis said.

Southport Mayor Robert Howard says the city is working to help find out what is causing the electric bills to be so high. He says one of the issues that has been discussed is that the new boxes need to be recalibrated to make sure they are calculating power use correctly.

"What we've asked our staff to look into to let us know at our next Aldermen meeting exactly what the cost of it would be and what the process would be. so that we can find out with the new boxes are measuring electricity accurately," Howard said.

Howard says some bills have spiked more than 150 percent of previous bills. He says this is obviously a serious problem that the city hopes to address soon.

"If the citizens have problems, we have problems," Howard said.

The Southport Aldermen plan to meet during the second week of April to determine if they will recalibrate the new meters.

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Still waiting.... We moved here from TN in Feb. and the utilities are CRAZY around here. Is anything being done?? What can we do??

Being new to the area I have really gotten an eye opening on how this town is being run and how it was run in the past. Who in their right mind would sign a 25 or more year lease on electricity! What I have read is that the town of Southport has installed new meters and since then the homeowners are paying more for the use of Southport’s overpriced electricity. (Why! Southport pays the fees that were negotiated at the time of signing the long term lease and then many of us feel that Southport tacks on a higher rate and then the citizens pay an even higher over inflated rate. If this is not true then I would like to see facts proving me wrong!) So if the customer that is paying for the electricity feels something is wrong then it is the city's responsibility to immediately investigate the complaint you would think. No that is not what this city is doing....they are evaluating what the cost of recalibrating the meters would be. The closed door on Southport looks really really good and you want in but once you open that door oh my does it ever smell fishy! Maybe Southport does need gates to get in and then people would investigate the city more before deciding that this is where they want to live.

I hooked my generator up to my house last month and it cost me less in gasoline than my elec bill. About 200 in gasoline now if I were to upgrade to a larger generator that would handle the frige stove and numerous other energy hogs at the same time I still think I would come out cheaper if not really darn close.

.....for wishing away the new international port. I saw this one coming.

It's about time someone spoke out about the light bills in the city of Southport. It has been like this forever, it's not something that just happened when the meters were changed. That's their way of claiming to try and justify this problem. First of all, if your bill isn't paid by the 15th of the month there is a $5 late fee, then if it isn't paid by the 25th it's a $25 penalty fee. I'm being penalized because I get paid at the last of the month, I can't help that. That's $30 extra to the city on top of your $500-600 bill a month. That's a mortgage. So many people have moved out of the city limits just because of the light bill. Someone please look into this problem cause poor working people can't afford to live here and I was born and raised here. Maybe it's time to move! Or maybe they are trying to get some of us out of here?????!!!!

the only reason they are looking into this is because the news got a wiff of it, trust me this is been like this for years. Thats BOLOGNA saying they are trying to fix the problems. As long as we sit back and keep accepting it, it will never change. We got to start going to
the meetings and see what's happening. I feel like the other person who wrote about the utility bill, I nearly FROZE to death this winter myself and had to use kerosne heaters. My furnish is gas but I couldn't afford to buy gas, it's either gas or lights???!!! You the math. A new meter was put into my home in Oct and around Nov and Dec my lights would get dim and bright, called Brunswick Electric and they came out 3 times to find out the problem so they said the wires going to the meter were bad and i had to get an electrician to come out and rewire, now heres my question. If you know the wires are bad why would you put the meter in? It was working fine before the new meter. I could have had a fire. One top of that it was a Friday and the electric company said they had to cut my power off until i get an licensed eletrician to come out and fix it and he came out on Sat morning fix the wires and called power company to come cut me back on and their response was they didn't do cut ons on the weekend so i was without power until Mon afternoon (3:30 to be exact) and guess what those 3 1/2 days still didn't cut my bill any. Yep another $500 bill. Go figure!!!!!!! Whatever contract the ciy of Southport is in PLEASE hurry up and get out of it (they say its a 25 yr contract). WE ARE IN TROUBLE!!! I wonder how much the Mayor's bill is? NOT $500, or maybe not even $200. And by the way i wanted the port to come here it would have been jobs for some people.

We're residents of Southport and our power bill has been at least $550 per month! We've called the city to no avail. Hopefully, enough residents will speak up and the city will fix this as soon as possible.

Yes, there is seriously "something" wrong! Mine has been 550 to over 600 dollars. Despite changes I have made to usage and freezing to death all Winter it continues to be high. They need to have an Emergency meeting instead of waiting until the second week of April as I don't know how much longer I can hold on. Just today I had to call for an extension for the first time in the years I have lived here. Some of the people in Southport are suffering and things are hard enough right now!