Customers question Snohomish PUD power shutoffs

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by JOHN LANGELER / KING 5 News

Bio | Email | Follow: @jlangelerKING5

KING5.com

Posted on August 25, 2012 at 5:36 PM

More than 100 Snohomish PUD customers had their power turned off earlier this week for failing to pay their bills, even though some say they had little or no notice.

Snohomish PUD said Friday it is now doing “geographic” shut-off procedures to cut costs, and added that individual communities will see more people shut off at the same time.

“We give customers a significant amount of time,” explained Mark Caple with Snohomish PUD. “We send them multiple notices.”

However, Julie Bogden of Camano Island said Saturday the only notice she received was when a PUD employee came to her home and turned off the electricity.

“I lost all of my food,” Bogden said, “No hot water, we couldn’t bathe the baby.  All over a very small bill.”

Bodgen said she had a small, running balance on her electric bill but was regularly paying two-thirds of what she owed.  While in the past that was sufficient, Bodgen said she was told by Snohomish PUD the rules had changed.  She had to pay roughly $500 to pay what was owed and turn the power back on.  Her daughter Kendall secured a grant to make that happen.

“For them to shut it off without any care about it, it’s not okay,” said Kendall Bodgen.

Snohomish PUD said there are a myriad of programs available to homeowners who cannot keep up with their payments.

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