Whose Water Debt Is This?

A friend shared the document below with me and I couldn’t contain my laughter, followed by irritation.  Really Baltimore??? I kept scratching my head trying to make sense of it.  I had way more questions that I had answers.

Let me first give you a little background.  My friend bought a property to use as rental in Baltimore City.  Things went good for the first 3 years, then the economy took a turn and the property became more of a hassle than it was worth.  She still owns it, but it’s been vacant for almost 2 years.  She’s optimistic that things will turn around, so she’s been holding on.  She has an uncle that drops by at least once a week just to check on things, and every 2 weeks her cousins cut the grass and tidy the yard.  So, imagine her surprise when she got this bill below in the mail:

I hope that y’all are able to see the scanned image.  Total due?  $16,799.99

Like REALLY????  17 thousand dollars???  In water and sewer charges???

Shall we discuss??  This is a 3 level town home that’s been EMPTY as in UNOCCUPIED for almost 2 years.  No occupants to use daily water.  Might there be homeless persons or other squatters in the area who are pilfering the water?  Well, I suppose, but at a rate of 3,229 gallons a day????  Are they stealing water to fill every swimming pool in a hundred mile radius?  In the winter??  Hmm, maybe there’s a pipe somewhere that has burst.   That many gallons should mean that the whole damn street is flooded.  And don’t forget, her uncle goes inside once every two weeks and nothing is amiss.

But honestly, as many questions, as I have, one rises to the top of the heap – WHY IN THE HELL HASN’T THE CITY TURNED THE WATER OFF????  A 17 thousand dollar bill and the service is still connected???  Where dey do dat???  Clearly, they have never worked in customer service before.  Last time I checked, every major utility and cell phone carrier will cut your service for non-payment.   Get it together Baltimore, damn!