Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Brockton DPW Head At End With Councilor's Water Bill "Crap"

By Lisa E. Crowley
BROCKTON—Ward 6 City Councilor Michelle DuBois isn’t as worried about comments made to her by Department of Public Works head Michael Thoreson near the end of an ordinance committee meeting Monday night as she is about getting a new water bill ordinance passed that she believes will help residents today and in the future when problems with their bills arise.
“I don’t really want to dwell on what he said,” DuBois said after the meeting. “I don’t want the importance of the problems to get lost…I don’t understand the personal nature of it all. They seem to think if I stop asking questions it will all go away,” she said.
About 15 minutes before the end of last night’s meeting that wrapped up with a favorable vote for DuBois’ new ordinance, Thoreson, who has been under fire for over a year from residents and some councilors, lost his temper while discussing his side of DuBois’ ordinance and responded by saying, “I’m at wits end taking this crap from you.”
Thoreson could not immediately be reached for comment about last night’s meeting.
DuBois said while she found Thoreson’s comments offensive, she would prefer to highlight different information that came out of the meeting, such as the difference between how many residents or households will be affected by the outcome of her ordinance.
Her ordinance would require the water department get an actual meter reading once every year, unlike the current ordinance which does not require an actual for at least two years.
The whole water mess began because many residents had not received actual readings in months and in some cases, 8 to 12 years, until bills trying to catch-up those estimates nearly gave residents heart attacks when they opened their mail to find water bills from $3,000 to $23,000 to, in one case, $100,000.
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