Businesses to get utility refunds

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Five Florala businesses will share in a more than $6,000 overage refund from the Florala Utilities Board.

Board accountant Joy Taylor told members Monday a recent evaluation of water and sewer customers revealed that owners of Sorabel restaurant, the Family Dollar Store, Green Energy, Hari Grocery and Southeast Elevators were being charged as heavy usage commercial customers. To be classified as a heavy usage commercial customer, businesses must use more than 10,000 gallons of water per month. Sewerage rates are tied to water usage, Taylor said. The heavy commercial water rate is $57.89 per month.

“I went back three years and found a discrepancy in the way customer accounts were set up,” Taylor said. “These customers were drastically overcharged. Some of these accounts only used 1,000 gallons of water a month.”

Refunds include:

• $746 to Sorbal;

• 1,829 to Family Dollar;

• $863 to Green Energy (former B&H Contracting);

• $619 to Hari Grocery; and,

• $2,067 to Southeast Elevator.

Taylor said customer usages will be closely monitored, and accounts will be charged the light commercial rate of $17.37 for up to 3,000 gallons.