Benjamin Franklin got it right when he said that the only two certain things in life are death and taxes, and it looks like SouthCoast residents are receiving sticker shock over their latest water bill.

I woke up to dozens of people on Facebook wondering why their water bill was drastically different compared to their last one, and the numbers are quite shocking. A resident of Wareham reported her bill was over $400, while Michael, a resident of Mattapoisett, reported his bill was over $1,000.

A local Facebook group was home to a thread of commenters trying to uncover the reasoning for the high bills this month. Several people said the bill is high because it reflects the entire year instead of the typical six-month review. Others believe that the towns are simply overcharging.

I spoke with Maureen Connolly Scartissi, a participant of the Facebook conversation, who shared her bill of $445.53. The bill states that it’s for one year, with the company explaining it is “due to changing our billing software.”

Courtesy of Maureen Connolly Scartissi
Courtesy Maureen Connolly Scartissi

“My first reaction was, ‘Wow, that’s a lot of money!” Maureen explained. “My second reaction was what a major bummer to pay this now, less than two months before Christmas and the holidays. The timing couldn’t be worse. Yet another gift brought to you by the year 2020!”

The timing of this surprisingly large bill is unfortunate, and it makes me wonder if my bill isn’t far behind in the mail.

I reached out to the New Bedford DPI Water/ Wastewater Department but have not heard back.

Did you receive a shocking water bill this month? Let us know.

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