Highland Park business owner gets $60,000 water bill

As a franchise owner of a Highland Park Tim Horton's cafe and bake shop, Theresa Johnson is used to getting bills for her business.

Nothing could prepare her for a $60,000 water bill.

"Sixty-thousand and I have not received a bill since May of 2013," Johnson said.

And despite not receiving statements. Johnson says she still made payments.

"I know I use water,  and so when I pay my business license, I give them $1,000 to go with the water," Johnson said.

Johnson is not alone. A nearby dry cleaners also got a higher than average water bill.

"Normally the bill yearly comes and it is between $1,300 to $1,500 but it's $5,000 now," said Shermicka Kelley of Sunrise Cleaners.

Highland Park Council member Rodney Patrick says Mayor Deandre Windom is to blame.

"He runs the water department and he has failed in his duties to send out water bills and were suffering for it." Patrick said.

Highland Park city attorney speaking on behalf of Windom, said business owners should bring the bills in question to City Hall.

"They are more than welcome to stop by the city and bring those bills and our staff will sit down with them," said Todd Perkins, city attorney. said. "And (we'll) adjust and or at least give clarity as to what the bill means."

But Johnson says she is confident the bill is wrong because the water bill at her other Tim Horton's restaurant in Warren is not even close.

"I pay less than $200 a month," she said. "And the volume is twice as much as this store." 

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