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Family Seeks Answers after Receiving Costly Water Bill

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DONNA – A Hidalgo County family said they’re watering their yard with caution after receiving a high water bill.

"It actually got me a little bit mad, this never happens to us,” said Aaron Colunga.

Colunga said this month’s water bill was just under $300. He showed us previous ones, most were about $25 dollars; the highest $86.

"In our situation it's a little bit difficult because we don't have the funds to do that,” he told CHANNEL 5 NEWS.

We took a closer look at the previous bills. Their usage spiked from 51 gallons the month before to 671 gallons. That's what tallied up to nearly $300.

"When I heard about it, I got a little suspicious,” he said. “I figured I’d come to you guys to see if you could help a little bit.”

CHANNEL 5 NEWS contacted the city. Donna mayor Irene Muñoz said they would look into it.

The city dispatched a utility worker to the family's home located on Victoria Road. The Colunga's said the city found no error in the reading and no leak.

"I want to know if they can help us out a little bit with anything,” Colunga said. “I'm pretty sure we're not the only ones dealing with this in the city."

We looked at the meter ourselves, it appeared to be accurate. While it is not the answer we hoped to find when the family contacted us, they have to find a way to pay.

Donna city finance director David Vasquez said there are measures you can take if you have a question about your water bill.

You must come in and let the city know you have a problem. They will then do a re-read of your meter and check for leaks. You then can fill out a complaint form for evaluation.

Regardless of where you live in the valley, the Public Utility Commission of Texas can help you if you have issues with your water company.

You can call the PUC consumer hotline at (512) 936-7405 in Austin to resolve a utility billing dispute or report any issues with your water service provider.

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