PSE&G is reminding customers facing financial difficulties during the pandemic that there are various federal and state programs to help those who have fallen behind on their gas and electric bills, and that they may be newly eligible for financial assistance.
Income eligibility requirements have been expanded for utility assistance programs, including the federal Universal Service Fund (USF) and Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). A family of four earning up to $105,000 a year can now receive help to cover most, if not all, of what they owe. The income eligibility is now more than double the pre-pandemic limit, PSE&G said.
Residents can go the state Department of Community’s Affairs’ screening portal to see if they are eligible for help paying gas and electric bills.
Eligibility also has been expanded for USF’s Fresh Start Program, which provides forgiveness of past due balances as long as customers pay their monthly energy bills in full for a year, PSE&G said.
PSE&G is also offering customers more flexible payment options and a new deferred payment arrangements (DPAs). A DPA allows customers to continue to pay their regular monthly bill, plus an amount toward your past-due balance. A customer can make a DPA with as little as $0 down and up to 12 months to pay, if they qualify.
“The pandemic has inflicted financial hardship on many of our customers, some for the very first time, and most are unaware that they may qualify for help,” said PSE&G Chief Customer Officer Deborah Affonsa. “We want to spread the word and raise awareness about the new and expanded programs that can provide relief.”
Visit pseg.com/helpnow for information about new payment assistance programs, pandemic relief and flexible payment options.
For further information about government assistance programs to help with utility bills go to NJ 2-1-1 Utility Assistance or call 800-510-3102.