PAMS late fees outrageous
Regarding the article “Water shutoff expenses pile up” (Dec. 8): I have had problems with Pennsylvania Municipal Services and I'm sure a lot of residents have had problems as well.
Since PAMS took over sewage billing for the Municipal Authority of New Kensington in January, my bill has almost doubled. Like many people, we live paycheck to paycheck. I paid a bill late, but with PAMS there is no standard late fee. PAMS adds interest for every day your bill is late. I paid my bill a week late, and the late fee was $25. I shudder at what the fee would be for someone who paid a month late.
And if you pay your bill online with a credit card, there's a $6 fee. Where does it end?
I contacted PAMS about the separate late-fee bill I received two weeks after my sewage bill was paid. That's when I discovered the interest-accrued late fee. I told them the fee was insane. After I was rudely told how the interest would be added — and how if I didn't pay the fee, they would keep adding interest — I contacted New Ken sewage. They were very nice on the phone but couldn't help because it was no longer their account.
Only after I contacted the Better Business Bureau did I get my late charge — by this time, it was up to $38.04 — waived as a “one time courtesy.”
It should be illegal for utilities to charge interest on late bills. If you don't like your cable provider, you switch. Don't like your gas or electric company? Change your provider. But with sewage, we have no choice.
Residents didn't ask for our accounts to be moved to PAMS, so why should we have to pay these outrageous interest-packed late fees?
Given the choice between paying a $50 late fee on my sewage or filling up my gas tank for work for the week, I'm filling my tank.
Thanks to the VND for making people aware of this situation.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Hundreds protest Indiana religious freedom law, say it’s discriminatory against gays
- Pitt notebook: Defense shows up in scrimmage
- Hit sends Penguins’ Letang to hospital
- Pirates notebook: Polanco’s power outburst a matter of timing
- Downie’s goal, fight spark Penguins to win over Coyotes
- Penguins notebook: Johnston stays with team despite mother’s death
- Game Commission to seek license fee increase in 2016-17
- Rogue Catholics in Society of St. Pius X to reopen West End church
- Outdoors extra
- Pa. trooper wounded in barracks ambush hopes to return to force
- Slippery Rock program connects preschoolers with music