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$200K natural gas bill? CenterPoint says it is working on billing error

"Customers do not owe this amount, and it will not be drafted from their account," CenterPoint said in a statement.

HOUSTON — Update: CenterPoint released a statement on the error Thursday evening:

“The power outage in Houston caused a technical issue which generated bill notification emails that were sent to approximately 27,000 Houston-area CenterPoint Energy customers in error. Customers who received an e-mail notification showing an amount due of $202,102.16 for natural gas, should disregard and not pay it as they don’t owe this amount. We are sorry for the inconvenience. This was only an email message error, not a billing error.

“To access the correct bill and current balance, customers can log into My Account Online and view ‘current amount due.’ Tomorrow, customers will receive an updated bill notification email that reflects the amount that is currently shown in My Account Online. We apologize for the error and appreciate our customers’ continued patience.”

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CenterPoint said it is working on a resolution to billing errors showing up on customers’ accounts this week during the widespread power outage.

The widespread power outage was a result of the severe cold weather from this week’s winter storm.

One natural gas customer contacted KHOU 11 News when their residential bill showed they already owed more than $200,000 for the month of February that was to be paid on March 4.

CenterPoint issued a statement Thursday afternoon:

“We have just been alerted about an issue involving incorrect billing information for CenterPoint Energy natural gas customers. We are looking into the issue to address it. Customers do not owe this amount, and it will not be drafted from their account. We’ll update our customers and media once we have a resolution.”

Check back for updates on this developing story.