Marlene Feist, Public Works Director of Strategic Development, 509.625.6505
Friday, December 11, 2020 at 4:49 p.m.
The City of Spokane utility customers should be aware of potential scam calls that threaten water shutoff because of a late bill. Citizens have reported that they received robocalls stating they were behind on their City utility payments and to press “one” to talk to an operator.
The City does not contact customers about bills through automated calls and currently, water shutoffs and late fees are suspended because of the pandemic.
In times outside of the pandemic, customers who are past due on their accounts are contacted multiple times, through written notifications and monthly bills, before they would ever face the possibility of having their water turned off. Additionally, after the notifications, the City places a door hanger at a residence or business 24 hours before turning off water.
If you receive a call that you believe is suspicious, end the call. Be wary of any high-pressure tactics demanding immediate payment or threatening immediate water shutoff. Do not provide bank account or other sensitive information. And don’t agree to wire funds electronically or to purchase pre-paid cards.
To confirm if a call is legitimately from the City, please call the City at 311 or 509.755.CITY (2489). Anyone who believes they have been a victim of this scam is asked to call Crime Check at 509.456.2233 to file a police report.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) provides additional information on utility bill scams.