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Baldwin City Utilities Problems…

I am deeply concerned for the community of Baldwin City....our utility company is a COMPLETE rip off. I was reading previous comments regarding our utility rates and I 100% agree. We are also going to move from Baldwin in the spring and we are also going to be affected by the housing market when it come to trying to sell our home. Over this summer our bills were incredibly high! First take into consideration this was one of the coolest summers on record. I can honestly say we ran our AC for 3 weeks the WHOLE summer. We live in a rather small house 1100sq ft, that is not old and drafty. We have three people living in our home and our August bill was pushing $400! I am a LONG time resident of this City, I went to school here and I want to raise my family here, but we (the people of BC) are being ran off. To top all of this, I recently dropped my bill of in the drop box @ 4pm on the 25th. My bill for some reason did not get picked up until the next morning. I was then assesed a late penalty. 10% of an already HUGE utility bill. I called the billing dept. and was told that "they" did not get it until the next morning. (when did they change it from being in the drop box "on" the 25th as long as it was in there by the time of opening on the next business day?) This aside, when I called I was told there was nothing they could do. That they would not take of the almost $40 late penalty. I asked to speak to the next person up, and a WEEK later I had not received any call back, so I called AGAIN, finally talked to the next in the chain of command and was told that they were not going to do anything about it, that I still was going to have to pay it. I again asked to speak to the "NEXT" higher up person. Another WEEK later no phone call. SO I called them again! FINALLY spoke with them...was told they would check into it and get back with me....ANOTHER WEEK later I receive a call and was basically told I was SOL! First of all what happend to giving a customer a grace period. JUST as a convienence. SOMETIMES things happen. What about our elderly that may forget, heck not just the elderly sometimes we ALL forget, nobody is perfect. When asked WHERE this grace period went, I was first told by the "HIGHER UP" that there never was one, humm I have LIVED HERE for a long time and YES there once was one! Then I was told that they compare themselves to credit card companies! That they don't give you a grace period. TRUE but they BY LAW have to give you 21 days to pay your bill. WE don't get 21 days! I am more upset about the priciple of this, not so much the $40. I just don't understand what is happening to the small town feel that was once a BIG part of this city! WE are JUST customers instead of NEIGHBORS!

October 16, 2009

Baldwin City Utilities Problems...


TheOnlyGreyghost 5 years, 7 months ago

The rate here is extremely high and we've also had times when we wondered if someone was tapping into our power because the bill was disproportionately high for the amount of energy we had used in that period of time. So I don't know what to tell you other than, I feel your pain!

That said, with the cool summer, our bills were much lower than in previous years and our house is quite a bit bigger. Do you have an older house with poor insulation or doors/windows that are bleeding cool air? If you're going to put the house on the market, it might pay to hire someone to assess the house and see if you can make it more energy efficient.

Finally... city hall. Yes, someone down there seems remarkably eager to tack on the late fees.We've paid on the due date (late in the day, as you did) but still received a late notice in the mail. It was mind boggling how quickly that arrived--as if someone had walked out the door of City Hall at 4:55 pm and made a beeline to the PO. Even if they sent them the next morning, it's obvious that they had the late fees out in the mail BEFORE checking to see if any straggler checks had arrived in the drop box the night before.

A couple of times, we've actually been late and just tacked the fee on when we paid. That's fine--if we're late, we're late. We know what day it's due each month and if it slips our mind, we deserve a late fee. But if someone pays on the due date, even if it's on the dot of 5:00, they should not be assessed a late fee.

If you end up having to go there in person to talk to anyone, be sure to get one of the nice ladies and not the one who looks as miserable about being there as she makes everyone who comes in the door. Everyone who's lived here awhile knows who I'm talking about. Maybe she should ask her boss for a new office chair--one that does not have the optional corn cob attachment.


indasky 5 years, 7 months ago

The reason you never got a response from the people at city hall is because they're all too busy driving around in the BRAND NEW "City" vehicles we all have purchased with those inflated utility bills and all the late fees.


sawman 5 years, 7 months ago

An easy way to avoid late fees is to have the payment automatically drafted. I do it with all my bills. Those paid by credit card earn rebates. No stamps, no trips to drop boxes, no fees. Keep track of everything easily on the Internet with access to balances and email alerts. I'd really like to pay with 140 lbs of pennies a month for as much as we're raped on utilities. 3X as much for water and 40% more for electricity and now we have the highest property tax of the 16 townships in the county. It would be nice to keep the sales tax the lowest in the area to balance that out.


Stacy Napier 5 years, 7 months ago


I used to have my payments sent automaticly from the bank but after being hit with their late fee scam twice in 6 months I quit that.

Eventhough I had payment sent 5 business days before City hall claimed they did not recieve it until the day after the 25th. They also said that they had a lot of comlaints about others getting late fees. So something is up when all my other bills I only send 3 days before and my bank is in Topeka.

Now I pay in person. And yes I have thought of paying in change. Maybe we all should do it on the same day. I am game.


indasky 5 years, 7 months ago

change it is....what day works? the thursday before its due?


Still_Pool 5 years, 7 months ago


For a bright shining moment it looked like the old SpeakOut before someone improved things and killed the darned thing. How I've missed Greyghost ... er ...the OnlyGreyghost... ugh... can we get a DNA sample so I can figure who is who?



uapinochet 5 years, 7 months ago

Where the hell have you been? LJWorld like everyone else?


greyghost 5 years, 7 months ago

She has some of my DNA on her face.


TheOnlyGreyghost 5 years, 7 months ago

Good to hear from you, S_P. Where the heck you been? Figured you won the lottery and relocated to Tahiti or something.

And just see what a class act fakeghost is? Not to mention, juvenile and bitter.

Seems I've hurt its widdle feewings by calling it out for fraudulent behavior. Apparently, it is used to behaving unethically and wronging others and facing no consequences. (Learned that behavior at Mommy's knee.) Glad to change that.

Just look at how much it's enjoying the hijacked name. Having some fun, now! Or not.

No one can take it seriously after it has shown its craven nature. Ha-but the lady doth protest that it "used to" have its own very creative name on the old SpeakOut. Yeah--it was so good, it was kicked to the curb in favor of my much better moniker.

Gonna stand up for your little pal after it made that last remark, Nan?

We might not all get along or agree on everything that city hall, the school board, etc., is doing, but at least none of the rest of us is a creativity-challenged, unethical little weasel who wrongs someone then keeps acting like the injured party.


beevo 5 years, 7 months ago

We too would like to move from Baldwin City. But it looks impossible. Anyone who knows anything about the taxes and utility rates in Baldwin City know it would be in their best interest not to live here. It is much less expensive to live elsewhere.


Still_Pool 5 years, 7 months ago

GG (the real one)

Speak Out has been so dull lately I started blogging on my own site under a pseudonym.

You might want to check out my stuff. I go by the name Glen Beck. ;)

Seriously, how many of the old Speak Out clan are still lurking out there?


TheOnlyGreyghost 5 years, 7 months ago

Hey, S_P~ Don't look now but some dimwit poser has stolen your name and is dragging it through the pig mud that is Fox "News." ;-)

Most Baldwin residents have too much to do to post on SpeakOut these days. To avoid the high cost of utilities and other expenses, they are busy hand dipping their own tallow candles, splitting firewood, toting water from their hand-dug wells, and creeping out in the dark of night to tap into their neighbors' cable lines.

Also, not much has been going on around here to generate discussion. We've gotten through autumn with no dog-flaunting Maple Leaf ring to bust, no wild barroom brawls, no campus streaking outbreaks.... no nuthin'!

The sales tax vote has generated the most excitement we've had in ages.

What we need is a good scandal. See what you can stir up, will ya?


NanCrisp 5 years, 6 months ago

What remark are you talking about? I am not anybody's "pal" here, lady. I've searched this entire thread and I don't even see a post from the "new" greyghost. But as I mentioned in the pseudo poll elsewhere in this forum, I just find the whole thing between the two of you tiring. It's just a personal vendetta both ways and the two of you need to take it outside. Literally.


Still_Pool 5 years, 6 months ago


I'll do what I can to stir up things. If it were summer I'd go to the pool and try to start trouble - get a life guard to start laying into a mom and her kids or some such...

That's not an option now, but here's an observation: does anybody notice that Peabody is posting less and less as we approach 2012?

Maybe Tony has some inside info on the upcoming apocalypse that we don't know. Perhaps those things on his roof aren't really solar panels? It could be they're some sort of defense shield to protect them from alien death rays.

I have my suspicions that all that remodelling and landscaping a few years back is concealing a vast underground survival bunker.

Once again, inquiring minds want to know what our public officials are up to! SP


greyghost 5 years, 6 months ago

In case anyone wants to catch up on what our Mayor is saying about our water costs, check out the Lawrence Journal World. Chad Lawhorn has a fairly decent article about Lawrence gouging the rest of the county on water prices.


What would the Signal be with Chad at the helm?


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