Computer error sees East Flemish villagers issued with 15,000-euro bill for their bins

Several Families in the East Flemish village of Oosterzele got something of a shock when they opened a bill sent to them by the intermunicipal waste collection company ILVA. While they like others in the area served by ILVA should have been sent a bill for 15 euro, they instead were sent one for 15,000 euro. ILVA’s spokeswoman Tina Verraes told VRT News that “We understand that there is confusion, but the correct sum is 15 euro”. 

The bill was sent to the householders to pay for the processing of the green waste such as grass cuttings and the like. After several shocked residents of Oosterzele contacted ILVA, the company decided that it was time to put the record straight. Ms Varraes told VRT News that those that received bills for 15,000 euros do in fact only have to pay 15 euro.

A computer error is blamed for the incorrect billing. “Unfortunately, the software had changed the comma for a point”. In Dutch with numerals, we use a comma where a point would be used in English and vice-versa. “The sum that was demanded further on in the letter was correct. Hence the confusion”, Ms Verraes added.

ILVA will send out letters to all concerned explaining what happened. 

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