PURA extends COVID-19 payment program enrollment date

This article was published on: 09/23/20 10:56 PM by Mike Minarsky

The Connecticut Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) today announced that it has issued a ruling that will extend the enrollment period for the COVID-19 Payment Program for non-residential utility customers through November 1, 2020. The enrollment period for the program for both residential and non-residential utility customers will now extend through November 1.

PURA is also reminding all residential customers that the “shut-off moratorium” currently in place for state-regulated electric, gas, and water utilities is scheduled to conclude on September 30, 2020. PURA encourages all customers experiencing difficulty paying their utility bills to contact their utility company and ask:

  • First, whether the customer is eligible to be “coded hardship.” Special financial assistance programs are available to hardship customers. (For more information, see the Operation Fuel website); and
  • Second, if ineligible for hardship status, to be placed on a COVID-19 payment plan.

COVID-19 payment plans are available to any customer requesting financial assistance, without demonstrating financial need; require no initial or down payment; can be up to 24 months in length; waive any fees or interest in the calculation of the monthly payment amount; and facilitate the repayment of the past due balances in addition to the customer’s current monthly bill.

Importantly, any customer enrolled in a COVID-19 payment plan who is current with their payment terms cannot be disconnected even once the shut-off moratoriums have concluded.

Providing information to Connecticut residents

For the most up-to-date information from the State of Connecticut on COVID-19, residents are encouraged to visit ct.gov/coronavirus. Residents can also subscribe to text message alerts from the state by texting the keyword COVIDCT to 888-777.

Individuals who have general questions that are not answered on the website can call 2-1-1 for assistance. The hotline is available 24 hours a day and has multilingual assistance. Anyone who is out-of-state or requires a toll-free number can connect to Connecticut 2-1-1 by dialing 1-800-203-1234. This is intended to be used by individuals who are not experiencing symptoms but may have general questions related to COVID-19. Anyone who is experiencing symptoms are strongly urged to contact their medical provider.

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