PROCTOR, Ark.– A Crittenden County, Arkansas woman is overwhelmed after she says her monthly water bill went from a normal $100 to a staggering $23,000.

Kristan Bussman said she contacted Midway Public Water Authority in Proctor, Arkansas after she received the bill.

“Anywhere from 50 to $100 is the most we’ve really ever used,” Bussman said. “It went from $1,000, and then the next month it went to $3,900, almost $4,000, to now it’s $23,000.”

She said the strange thing is both she and a worker from Midway walked her property after one of her earlier monthly bills reported water usage of over 800,000 gallons.

“We walked everywhere, I mean all around the property and there was absolutely no water,” Bussman said.

That was after Midway had shut off the water for three days to test the system.

She believes the problem lies with Midway’s water meter, which she said is still running even though Bussman turned the water off herself a month ago to avoid getting a higher bill.

“Now the water was off all month, wasn’t on, and I get a $23,000 bill,” she said.

She admitted she did have a leak in her kitchen drain but doesn’t think it could have caused that high a water bill.

We reached out to Midway on whether the water meter — called a cellular read meter — could in fact be bad.

“It’s possible. Anything’s possible. I don’t think it is but anything’s possible. I’m certainly not going to say that it’s not,” said Allan Massey with the Midway Public Water Authority.
He told us he plans to return to Kristan Bussman’s property and look deeper into what’s causing her high water bills.

“I don’t want us to get a blame for something that’s not our fault and I don’t want her to pay a bill that’s not hers either,” Massey said.