2015 assistance funds to help customers facing financial hardship avoid service disconnection
CHICAGO (March 25, 2015) – ComEd announces it has dedicated $10 million in assistance funds for 2015 to help customers struggling to pay their electric bill. ComEd is urging customers who have fallen behind on paying their electric bill to contact ComEd to see if they are eligible for payment arrangements or financial assistance.
The ComEd CARE programs are focused on helping military families, veterans, senior citizens and people who may have experienced a job loss, illness or disability and need help with paying their electric bills. ComEd also offers assistance to non-profit organizations that are experiencing a hardship.
Under the Smart Grid law, enacted in 2011, ComEd committed $50 million for five years to help eligible customers with their utility bills.
“We realize some customers fall on hard times and need assistance with paying their monthly electric bill,” said Val Jensen, senior vice president of Customers Operations, ComEd. “Our goal is to help our customers maintain continual seamless electric service. This is why we want to ensure that customers who are in need of assistance are aware of the ComEd CARE programs and how they can receive financial relief during tough times.”
Last year through ComEd’s CARE programs, the utility was able to help more than 16,200 customers maintain their service. Service disconnection is always the last resort, and only occurs after a lengthy process that is designed to avoid this outcome. The $10 million for 2015 will provide relief to customers in need and help get them back on track to managing their utility bill. The utility is also running advertisements to increase awareness of the available funds and to encourage customers in need to apply for assistance.
In addition, through new legislation introduced in the Illinois General Assembly on March 19, ComEd is looking to extend this assistance. Under HB3328/SB1879, financial assistance programs will be extended for another five years through 2021, enabling ComEd and utilities serving more than 3 million customers to contribute $10 million per year to existing financial assistance programs or similar programs offered as a result of the Smart Grid law.
For more information on ComEd’s financial assistance programs, including eligibility requirements please visit ComEd.com/CARE or call 1-888-806-CARE (2273).