Chugach opens payment options for residential members impacted by COVID-19
Maintaining safe, reliable power while responding to the COVID-19 emergency declaration, Chugach Electric Association has a new process for making payment arrangements with members facing a financial hardship due to the pandemic. On March 17, Chugach temporarily suspended disconnects due to non-payment and stopped assessing late payment fees due to the challenges members are facing from the impacts of COVID-19. The Alaska State Legislature then passed SB 241, a measure that includes language prohibiting utilities from shutting off residential service during the pandemic for customers experiencing financial hardship related to the COVID-19 public health disaster emergency.
“Chugach is committed to helping our members through the challenges brought about by COVID-19,” said Chugach CEO Lee Thibert. “We will continue to work with those who are struggling to meet financial obligations due to the pandemic.”
To be eligible for the temporary payment relief, utility customers must sign a sworn statement saying they are unable to pay because of COVID-19 issues and agree to enter into a deferred payment plan. The legislation states utility customers are still responsible for payment of their utility bills but must sign the declaration in order to defer payment to a future date when the financial hardship due to COVID-19 is over.
Chugach has made the forms available on its website. For more information and access to the forms, go to https://www.chugachelectric.com/safety-community/coronavirus-covid-19. Members can also call (907) 563-5060 for assistance.