I’d send it back, sans check, with a note that their union can pay that bill with all the overtime they got for turning out-of-state linemen away.
There have to be many better places to live than at the edge of the Atlantic Ocean. There is no guarantee that this can’t happen again next year.
“Id send it back, sans check, with a note that,,,”
A note that gives the reading on the meter. Or call/email in the correct meter reading. Ask for a “corrected” bill based on actual usage.