Daughter suspicious after hospitalized father gets $400 water bill

By: Erica Byfield


A metro woman is trying to figure out how watering plants once a week led to a nearly $400 water bill.
Marilyn Morris told Channel 2's Erica Byfield that her father is in the hospital, so she is taking care of his home and bills.
Morris said her father is 80 years old and has not lived in his DeKalb County house for months.
She told Byfield that in 2013 he averaged a $100 monthly water bill, and something changed in February of this year.
"They started coming in at $273.05 back in February, $295 in March, $383, it just kept going up," Morris said.
She added that since late winter, there has been no toilet flushing, no showering -- just plant watering.
"It would be absolutely impossible to receive a bill that high. My father uses zero water, literally. You see what little gardening is here that needs water. We have a lot of rain," Morris said.
Morris explained she has had trouble reaching someone with the county water billing department.
Recently, DeKalb County leaders threatened to cut off the water, and eventually did last May.
Morris told Byfield that county leaders turned it back on once they realized she had paid part of the bill.
Fed up, Morris said she decided to contact Channel 2 Action News.
DeKalb County spokesman Burke Brennan sent someone out to check Morris' father's water meter and found it constantly running one day and not the next.
Brennan said DeKalb officials suspect there's a leak.  He added that if there is a leak, the county will credit her father's account.
Morris is determined to get to the bottom of the problem.
"I don't know if there is a leak or not. There is not a leak in the house. I'll call a plumber," she said.

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