Powhatan County residents notice large increase in power bills

Posted at 7:12 PM, Mar 20, 2015
and last updated 2015-03-20 22:10:55-04

POWHATAN COUNTY, Va. – Neighbors on Bell Road in Powhatan County were shocked to find an increase in their power bill for the month of March. Some residents saw increases up to $300.

Sharon Owens, who is concerned about her electric bill increase, said there has to be an explanation.

"I know there's a problem, I know that this is not right, but how do I prove it,” Owens explained.

Rhonda Scott, also concerned, broke down her monthly totals.

  • November -- $85.10;
  • December -- $238;
  • January -- $291;
  • February -- $445;
  • and March -- $566.

These homeowners say they understand there's been a record cold, but some, like William Jasper, doesn't understand the increase.

"I'm not just running electric, I have a propane heater we use for back up, so to speak," Jasper said.

Southside Electric Cooperative, like many power companies in Virginia, saw record peak demand in February. But some resident didn’t expect their bills to climb so high.

"It has increased tremendously, too much and I don't think it's our usage," said Theresa Brown,

"I just got a bill on Monday -- $774.41. Owens explained. “The month before was $472.74.”

It's not just homes here along Bell Road that have seen their electric bills increase. Greenbrier Baptist Church paid $278 back in November -- their latest bill, $1512.

Homeowners say that they've reached out to Southside Electric. They’ve asked them to come out to Bell Road and inspect the area.

When contacted by CBS 6, Southside Electric cited February’s historic lows as part of the problem.