Kentucky Agency Urges Utility Companies To Be Lenient

A harsh winter has caused high utility bills and some people are having trouble paying them.

MGN Online

LOUISA, Ky. (WSAZ) -- A harsh winter has caused high utility bills and some people are having trouble paying them. Now, there is push in Kentucky offering help to those in need.

The Public Service Commission is asking electric and natural gas companies to work with customers who are having a tough time making payments.

The PSC is urging utility providers to be as flexible as possible in avoiding disconnections and allowing customers to make arrangements to extend their payments.

Assistance is available from the state through the Low Income Energy Assistance Program.

In Louisa, the Northeast Kentucky Community Action Agency has a crisis program set up for people who get behind on their utility payments, but there are qualifications to meet.

"They do have to show a disconnect notice for this program or a past due notice in order for this particular program to help them," says Delphia Fitchpatrick, Office Manager at Northeast Community Action Agency.

"You have to meet household size and income and you have to have social security cards for everyone in the household," says Fitchpatrick.

Fitchpatrick says she has seen higher bills this winter than in previous years.

Avery Ray, a resident in Louisa, says his electric bill went up $100.

"People need every bit of money they can get," says Ray. "A hundred bucks is a grocery trip for a lot of people around here."

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