CSAC Bulletin Article

PG&E Offers Options to Ease Customer Financial Burden During COVID-19 Pandemic

March 26, 2020

Pacific Gas & Electric recently released a number of billing and service modifications to help customers experiencing financial challenges related to COVID-19. PG&E encourages customers experiencing COVID-19 related financial issues to call 1-800-743-5000. PG&E’s options include:

  1. Suspending service disconnections for non-payment and waiving new service deposit requirements for residential and small businesses
  2. Implementing flexible payment plan options
  3. Providing additional support for low-income and medical baseline customers

In addition, to these options PG&E is also encouraging customers to apply for its California Alternative Rates for Energy Program. This program can provide discounts of 20% of more to eligible applicants. Customers can apply for CARE online at pge.com/CARE. Qualifying customers will begin receiving the CARE program discount within their next billing cycle.  According to PG&E the top ten counties with the highest number of eligible customers not enrolled in the program are:

  1. Sacramento
  2. Stanislaus
  3. San Luis Obispo
  4. Placer
  5. San Mateo
  6. San Francisco
  7. Sonoma
  8. Yolo
  9. Humboldt
  10. Shasta

In addition to CARE, income-qualified household with three or more persons can apply for the Family Electric Rate Assistance (FERA) Program.

PG&E is also telling its customers about one-time assistance through the federal  Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). This program provides financial assistance to help offset eligible household energy costs, including heating, cooling, and home weatherization expenses. You can learn more about this program here.

Finally, PG&E is giving notice about energy support for customers with medical conditions requiring electricity-powered medical equipment. This program is called the Medical Baseline Program and is not based on income. Certification by a doctor is required. Eligible customers can receive an extra baseline allotment of 500 kilowatt-hours of electricity and/or 25 therms of gas per month.

For more information about PG&E’s response to COVID-19 you may visit: https://www.pge.com/en_US/about-pge/company-information/protective-protocols/covid19.page?WT.mc_id=Vanity_covid19

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