The Town of South Attleboro, MA sent out wildly threatening past due letters for folks with balances as low as 1-cent (thereby investing at least 42 cents to get one back). In response to charges that this was stupid, City Collector Debora Marcoccio responded:A computer automatically printed the letters for any account with a balance remaining, and they were not reviewed by staff before being sent out, Marcoccio said.
"It would be fiscally irresponsible for me to have staff weed through the bills and pull out any below a certain amount," Marcoccio said. " And what would that amount be?"
What, are we living in the 19th century with clerks in a musty room preparing bills by hand? This fix probably requires one whole entire line of program code in the billing system to fix. I could probably teach myself to code whatever language the payroll system is written in (my guess is COBOL, which, god help me, I already know) in less time than this woman has spent fielding complaints and media inquiries.
Little else remains to be said here.