Charlotte man gets $308K water bill

Monday, May 29, 2017
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CHARLOTTE, North Carolina -- A restaurant owner got a water bill for more than $308,000 and he said it was for just 13 days of service.

"We all were very, very worried," Faraz Syed told WSOC. "I'm worried. I can't sleep properly. The whole family can't sleep properly."

He said his restaurant, Lazeez Mediterranean Grill, wasn't even in business yet, so he was only using minimal water.

"I was like very scared," Syed said. "I was like, 'Oh my God, I have to open this restaurant right now.'"

He said he hired a plumber to make sure there were no leaks and that there weren't any.

He believes the bill has a typo. He usually uses about 3,900 ccfs of water, but the bill says he used more than 39,000 ccfs.

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He thinks Charlotte Water put in an extra digit by mistake.

"I called them, 'Hey, what is this? What kind of bill is this?'" he said.

Charlotte Water promised to correct the bill so he didn't pay.

He said he couldn't afford to even if he wanted to pay it.

The utility shut his water off Wednesday and left this note saying it's because of nonpayment.

"What do we need to do," Syed said. "Do we really have to pay it? How is it possible for 13 days, we have to pay (more than $308,000)?"

He complained and got it turned back on, but said it took three hours through the lunch rush costing him 17 customers.

"They understand that it is not our problem, but it's still not good for business," Syed said

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