They showed up as I was pulling up with groceries, then the guy says he's there to check the meter. I let him to the meter and he doesn't say he's disconnecting it, but just does. My step-father after making sure checks have cleared so he can pay, uses their automated services to pay, our bill was $80, but the charged an additional $70 for reconnection fee and $2.77 for automated service fee, it then props him for either completion of the order or and additional $49 same day fee (at 5pm for Dec 01). My step-father, already paying nearly double chooses to just complete the order with no same day fee and gets a confirmation number, then it disconnects. As every other service (utility, phone, internet, premium tv, etc) we've dealt with uses the confirmation as a completion and request of standard next day reconnection, my step-father expects the same. I and my aunt take off work and wait all the next day (today Dec 02) so we don't miss the technician and have two sets of ears. After hours of waiting, by step-dad checking in ever hour or so, he suggests I call to see if Centerpoint can give an estimate when the technician will show up. I make my call at 3:25 and am on hold for 10 minutes before it disconnects me, I call right back and then am on hold for another 15 or so minutes before the rep gets on and tells me that the system shows we paid, but no appointment was set to get it reconnected; She then tells me that after 4pm it requires we pay the $49 same day fee, I get my step-father on the line, because it is still before 4pm, we try to be cordial, she tells us the same garbage, despite us pointing out that it is still before fore, and she even says, "Yeah, 5 minutes til 4", we ask for a supervisor and are then put on hold for another 20 minutes. When the supervisor gets on she apologizes for our stupidity, and says Monday is the earliest they can do it, and even says that if we want it faster we have to pay the $49, we point out when I called, and she says "You've only been on the phone since 10 til 4", to which I point out that is when their rep picked up, but I've been on hold way longer, she even tells us that even if we pay the $49 it will still be Monday before the technician can get out.
It is criminal what they do. I have half a mind to let them reconnect, and then make sure anytime their technician shows up there is a sign on the fence warning about pitbulls and requiring a scheduled appointment to enter my yard, as well as claiming any entrants without permission have been warned and entry is an acceptance of liability for their own health at possible mauling and/or other bodily harm by canine and/or human defense of my property. Then when they call for an appointment I inform them of the safe passage fee, the expenditure of my time fee, the private viewing of my yard fee, the parking on or in front of my property without a authorized permit fee, the surcharge to remove the exemption from their personal liability while on my property fee, and see how they like having to pay through the nose just to try to screw me. Yes, they have the right to turn off my gas, but under the 2nd Amendment I have the right to protect my property. Perhaps it would work, perhaps it would just frustrate them like they frustrated myself, my step-father, and obviously many others.