City of Scam, Texas

I’ve lived in Orange Texas for a bit over 2 years now, and in this time I’ve had no less than 4 instances where the City has claimed I failed to pay my water bill when I was absolutely certain that I had.

I stopped paying with cash, and began hording receipts, and strangely the problem went away for a while. Until this month. Even more unusually, my pile of receipts is missing from my car where I keep them. These receipts do not have any personal information on them, so nobody would have any reason to want to take them.

Just to be sure, I checked my online banking account, and found that yes, I did indeed make a payment last month. On the 12th, with the payment considered late after the 20th. So, it wasn’t even cutting it close.

Unfortunately, by the time I got the letter, it was past the time my bank closed, so I went up to tell the person at the city hall that there was an error on my bill. Word for word this is what her reply was “Our computers are down so I can’t check on that for you. Would you like to go ahead and pay the full amount?”

Like HELL the computers are down! If the computers were down, they would not be able to TAKE a payment because without the ability to access the payment servers they could not credit the money to my account.

Tomorrow, I plan to visit my bank, get a print out of last month’s transactions and bring the paperwork with me. The number of clerical errors this place makes is astonishing, its too bad things like this are chalked up to ‘error’ as it feels more and more like fraud every time this happens.

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