PWSA billing problems continue despite agency saying they're fixed

PITTSBURGH — A Target 11 investigation found that the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority continued to have customer billing issues after announcing the problems had been fixed.

Adam Rosenberg reached out to Target 11 because he was frustrated, and said the PWSA offered him a discount off his bill to keep quiet.

Rosenberg had received water bills that were three times his normal rate, and was unable to get any help from the PWSA.

"I tried to get them out to this house one million times to fix the situation, the bills kept escalating, the stories kept changing and nobody came out," Rosenberg said.

He said PWSA initially told him he must have a leak, so he hired a plumber. The plumber was unable to find a problem. Months later, Rosenberg said PWSA officials finally agreed to come inspect the home themselves and found his electronic meter wasn't working.

In a statement, the PWSA stated that it "had multiple discussions with Mr. Rosenberg to attempt to resolve the issue with the customer and offered a discount on his billing, as is allowable under our regulations and policies."

"Well, that's not even legal," said Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto. "Number one, you can't cut side deals, and number two, no government agency should have said the words 'don't go to the media.'"

The mayor told Target 11's Rick Earle that 95 percent of PWSA's billing issues were resolved, but other problems exist.

"[The PWSA] is now paying out more in debt than it puts into the services, meaning the entire authority is under water," said Peduto. "Under the present system, it will either go bankrupt or the rates will be so high that people will choose to leave the city and those are the two issues we are facing, like a double barreled shotgun."

Peduto said the situation is so dire, he called for a complete restructuring of the Authority.