West Virginia American Water has adjusted monthly bills for roughly 49,000 customers to correct billing errors made during the company's transition to a new billing software system in May.
The adjustments were posted to affected customer accounts Aug. 24 and will show up on those customers' next regular monthly bill, West Virginia American Water spokeswoman Laura Jordan said.
The company initially notified affected customers of the situation in letters mailed in late August.
The letter said that after the company transitioned to its new software system in late May, some customer accounts were billed incorrectly. The errors were due to either an extended billing period or surcharge that was left off some customer bills.
Customers who were billed for 36 or more days of water service - beyond the company's required 25 to 35-day monthly billing cycle - were charged higher amounts than they should have been, due to a prorating formula calculated by the billing system.
The letter said customers affected by this error would receive a credit on their next monthly bill.
While those customers will receive a credit, the customers affected by the missing surcharge will see an additional charge on their next bill.
The surcharge inadvertently left off those bills is paid to various local government entities, including the Putnam County Building Commission, Kanawha County Regional Development Authority, and the towns of Clendenin and Arbuckle.
If a customer cannot pay the additional charge in the first month, the company said customers can call the company's customer service center at 800-685-8660 to make arrangements to pay off the charge over a three-month period.
Jordan said only a small portion of the 49,000 customer accounts affected by the software error will see the new charge on their next bill.
"Only about 1,000 of (the 49,000 accounts) were affected by the missing surcharge error," she said. "The rest were affected by the extended billing period error and will see a credit back on their next bill."
Jordan said the company notified the state Public Service Commission about the software glitch and has updated the commission on its plans to correct the situation.
Contact writer Jared Hunt at busin...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4836.