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  • This Cleveland, Ohio consumer complaint and discussion site is operated by Joel Libava, an angry Cleveland Water Division customer, a resident of University Heights, and a franchise consultant. This site is probably not approved by any Water Division employee. Joel is not at all related to Ralph Nader, any of his rabid followers, or to any Water Division employees. And, Joel doesn't give up.

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I am also sending a copy of my complaint with the spreadsheet to Ohio District Attorney, my State Representative, the reporter(s) that covered this story in the PD as well as one or two news stations....
I have a feeling that most of these spikes that show up for these others because of an estimate to actual read are just like mine - they are being charged a second time for the full amount even though they've already been paying on estimated usage.
Be it corruption or ignorance - it doesn't matter. Cuyahoga County residents are being over charged and given the run around and I'm willing to fight this battle!

You just did what you needed to do. Now make sure everyone you know sees this, and comments if they are having problems. Also, comment on Cleveland.com Just find the articles written by P.D. reporters. There are tons of them.


I was stunned to find out the PUCO does not handle complaints on the Water Dept! We live in Strongsville (who charges us residents 32.75% of our sewer bill plus a $10 adm fee!) I found this site while researching who to send copies of my official complaint to. Our problem started in Nov 08. ALL our bills were showing 'Previous Meter Read' AND 'Current Meter Read' of 57.2cf starting May 07. We were being charged for estimated usage, but the readings NEVER changed. We requested an actual reading Nov 08 and it came back at 70.4cf. The adjustment bill charged us for the full 12.4cf even though we had been billed and were paying for the estimated usage which totaled 69.9cf. They under billed us only by 0.8cf, NOT the 12.4cf! Several phone calls later, we have no resolution. We had to go downtown to pay in person to avoid shut-off (we were not paying the full amount because we knew it was wrong) and got a very nice, polite and understanding Customer Service Rep (they do exist) who filed a complaint and requested a copy of our billing/payment history be sent to us. As of our current August bill, they are again over charging us for usage that we've already been billed and have paid, and they are stating we owe the Water Dept over $300.00 and the Sewer Dept $160.00 when in fact - we only owe $6.72 to Water, and because of the Water Departments mismanagement of accounting (they applied a single payment of $321 to sewer only) the Sewer Company OWES us $89.76!
I am sending in my complaint to the Water Department, the Cleveland Mayor's Office, and Strongsville City Hall. Any suggestions of who else should see this?

Angry In N. Olmsted,

sounds like you are a person who "pays as agreed." You said;

"Like many others, I pay all of my bills on-line, including all the utitilies --- EXCEPT water (because their website is way behind the times)'

These folks seem to be behind the times in a lot of respects. Stay on them, email-call, comment on the Plain Dealer stories about the Water co. over at Cleveland.com

There are like 7 of them!


Yesterday, a Cleveland Division of Water (CDW) technician arrived at my home. After he read the outside and inside meters, he had this really concerned look on his face. He then informed me that the meter outside was reading differently than the meter on the inside. Of course, neither reading even remotely reflected the "estimate" on my current bill, and my quick calculation based on his comments and the amount of time we've been living in the house, leads me to believe the adjusted bill will be over $9000.

Like many others, I pay all of my bills on-line, including all the utitilies --- EXCEPT water (because their website is way behind the times). As such, I can go on to any of the sites, and request a historical record anytime - something I will need to do in order to ascertain when they've actually "read" versus "estimated" the bill. Given some of the comments, I don't feel comfortable they will be able to provide this information.

I haven't yet called Customer Service, but I can't believe that they can just assign a value of what I owe without proof that we've actually consumed the water.

I think a reasonable approach is as follows:
-- monitor ACTUAL usage over time, and develop an ACTUAL baseline for usage
-- determine the "read" versus "actual" bills and adjust for $$ already paid
-- use a fair and reasonable rate for the difference, not just today's rate

This approach will ensure that the CDW is not gouged in the process (even it's their fault). It is also fair to the Consumer, since the adjusted bill is based on ACTUAL usage.

Anyway, I would be interested in joining the Class Action Lawsuit.

Way to go...

I am glad you finally got your erroneous water bill fixed!


I just got my revised bill it was $1663 now down to $275


Hi! I just discover that my parents are being charged for over $5000 worth of water and sewage on a building that's been vacant (but leaking according to the Water District). Can anyone help me find help to rectify this?

got my sewer yesterday 102 dollars, now lets see what happens after they install my new meter on Aug 8th.

Good for you!

My revised bill came, and the sewer bill was delivered the next day.



I got my revised water bill yesterday 97 dollars, down from 881 dollars. still no sewer bill though.

We're still waiting for a promised hearing with the Water Review Board .... It's going on 2 months and we aren't even on their schedule yet ...

Let me know how it works out for you. I can't believe these people

I just tried to call the customer service line. A 23 minute wait.

Now, that's service!


About the same. Now they are saying we owe $1120 total. I am not sure if that is for 2 quarters or 3 quarters. Still wrong. By a lot!


How bad was the revised bill compared to what you usually pay?
I normally pay about 65 every 3 months

Hi df,

I just received a "revised" water bill, also.

I don't understand it. Looks like the numbers were drawn out of a hat. And, it's still way out of line!


I just got my water bill today 7/7/09. 881 dollars and 274 sewer bill. called water department and was on hold for 15 minutes. They told me to ignore bill and they will send out revised bill.

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