Saturday, February 21, 2004

Unpaid bill quiets Deerfield parks phones

By Erica Solvig
The Cincinnati Enquirer

DEERFIELD TWP. - Trying to reach the township parks department? Just hit redial.

The department's phones were shut off this week after a Sprint bill was not paid on time. Township Clerk Kristin Spiekerman, the township's chief financial officer, said an $84 check was issued and sent earlier in the month, but never cleared the bank.

"We have a check out there and we don't know where the check is," she said.

She said the check was issued Feb. 3, and signed off the next day.

The phone had been shut off sometime Monday, but was restored again by late Wednesday. Anyone calling the township parks department number heard an operator's recorded message.

Sprint spokeswoman Stephanie Meisse would not discuss this particular case because of the company's privacy policies. But in general, she said, customers get a notice when their payment is 14 days late saying they can avoid disconnection either by setting up a payment plan or paying at least the local charges.

"We didn't get a shutoff notice," Spiekerman said. "We're a little befuddled as to why we didn't get any notification."

Sprint is one of several phone companies with whom the township has accounts.

The township's next Sprint bill is due March 2, Spiekerman said. Trustees, who approve bill payments, meet March 3.


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