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Saltcoats man says he can't afford incorrect SaskPower bills
Published Monday, April 22, 2019 7:00PM CST
Last Updated Tuesday, April 23, 2019 11:03AM CST
A Saltcoats man said that he can’t afford his SaskPower bill and that it’s incorrect.
According to SaskPower, Melvin Matychuk owes more than $2,100, including a $1,100 unpaid balance.
"They started out at $500 to $600 per three months, and then at one time they jumped to $1,000. And they did an estimate on the bill and the next bill was over 2000,” he said.
Matychuk said that the bills have been rising over the past year on a property that is barely in use.
The bills are for small house near Central Butte where he hoped he and his wife could one day move.
They visit just a few weekends a year, but have a few appliances running and electric heat.
The bills shown to CTV News show ‘estimated meter readings’ in all but one case. His latest bill shows that SaskPower estimated Matychuk used 81546 kWh at the Central Butte property. A photo taken on Monday shows 75132 kWh used, a difference of 6414 kWh.
At the cost listed on his bills, the difference was $811.88.
Matychuk said that for months he had sent pictures to SaskPower that showed different usages of power than what appeared on his bills. He said that every time he showed the company it credited his account, but would not send personnel to inspect the metre.
“They said we don't do that in rural areas—we only [inspect rural metres] once a year,” Matychuk said. “Well, the past two years I haven't seen an actual metre reading. It was always just an estimate.”
SaskPower gave Matychuk 48 hours to pay the outstanding changes. He said he couldn’t afford it and hopes to reach an agreement with SaskPower over a repayment plan.
In a statement to CTV News SaskPower said that it can't comment on individual customer accounts, and that interested customers can submit monthly metre reads and eliminate estimates altogether.