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Kernersville residents win $12.3 million in class action lawsuit over sewer charges

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KERNERSVILLE, N.C. — More than 10,000 Kernersville residents will soon have a check in the mail.

According to a news release, a superior court approved a $12.3 million settlement in a class action lawsuit over excess sewer charges which will benefit 10,541 residents.

The Friday settlement means the sewer customers are set to receive full refunds of excess charges paid from 2012 to 2016, including about 9 percent interest.

“We sincerely appreciate the time and attention that judge (Edwin) Wilson has put into the case, and are glad that people who were overcharged will be made whole,” said plaintiffs and class representatives Ed and Debra Fasano in a news release.

The suit began in 2016, accusing the Town of Kernersville and the City/County Utilities Commission of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County of overcharging for sewer services over four years.

According to the release, the suit claimed the town and commission violated a 2011 agreement that required Kernersville sewer rate to decrease beginning June 30, 2012.

The $12.3 million compensation is meant to pay customers back for excess charges from July 1, 2012, to Aug. 1, 2016.

Settlement payments depend on the class member’s sewer bills, but more than 75 percent of the 10,541 class members will receive checks for between $100 and $2,000.

Class members can expect their checks sometime after they are mailed out in September and should arrive during 2018.

The class was represented by attorneys H. Brent Helms and Scott Templeton of Robinson & Lawing, LLP in Winston-Salem, and by Alan Duncan and Stephen Russell, Jr. of Mullins Duncan Harrell & Russell PLLC in Greensboro.

The case was filed as Fasano v. Town of Kernersville and the Winston-Salem – Forsyth County City/County Utilities Commission,