"For a lot of people looking at the meter is a horror story," said Linwood Johnson.
Just as people were recovering from winter electric bills that were routinely more than $300, the more expensive summer rate kicks in next month.
Franklin buys its electricity wholesale from Dominion Power.People there feel like they're getting a raw deal.
"There is a sense of hopelessness that is brewing all over the city," Johnson said.
In July, city council expects to pass a 3% increase.
"And you know in the summer we need AC day and night most of the time," Johnson said.
Marsha Barnes knows the feeling all too well. She can't afford to turn the lights on, every bill fills her with worry.
"It's very depressing to me," Barnes said.
She paid what she could afford all winter long. Half paid bills swelled to $1,500, that's when the city threatened to turn her lights off. 843 dollars worth of receipts show what she's paid just this week.
"It's really putting the people that's on a set income further in the hole," Barnes said.