Have you received your latest LCUB utility bill? Are you still in shock. Does it seem that somebody just guessed at how much you owed this month? Well, that's not far from the fact.

According to LCUB officials many, many rate payers had their bills estimated for the current billing cycle. Due to the stretch of bad weather meter readers weren't able to get to all the meters before the end of the billing cycle which required estimating those unread meters. This includes electric, gas and water/sewer meters.

Again, according to LCUB, the way they reached those estimated figures was to take a customers last 12 months of bills and take the average of those bills for this month's billing. However that doesn't seem to work, at least in my case.

We have lived in our house for 27 years and not in those 27 years have we ever had a utility bill this high and it's not even been that cold. In fact if I average my last 12 months of bills, my average electric bill has been $182.36. Yet my latest bill was $317.55. Same deal with my water. Average bill over the last 12 months, $16.78. My bill this month, $32.74. Apparently, LCUB uses a different method than anyone else to calculate averages.

While the estimation process may very well be necessary in extreme cases, a little more effort might be used to more accurately reflect a customer's actual usage. In the meantime LCUB will see a real boost in revenue. But all is not lost. In most cases, the bills will balance themselves out the next time your meter is read rather than estimated except in the case where you only use the minimum. In that case LCUB will see a bit of a windfall.

In the private sector what LCUB did would be called "over billing." In the private sector it would also be illegal and one might lose their job or maybe even go to jail. But I guess government business has different rules.