UI, SCG, and CNG Enroll over 350 Customers in Bill Management Programs Across 6 In-Person Enrollment Workshops
Companies Will Host Additional Customer Events Throughout Summer and Fall
ANSONIA, Conn. — Monday, June 5, 2023 — United Illuminating and Southern Connecticut Gas, subsidiaries of Avangrid, Inc. (NYSE: AGR), today announced the companies will host a customer outreach and education forum, the Naugatuck Valley Energy Rates Town Hall, in Ansonia on Thursday, June 22, 2023 from 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM. The town hall will mark the ninth event in a series of in-person customer outreach events held across UI, SCG, and CNG service territories in the last several months, during which the companies have enrolled over 350 customers in bill management programs.
“Our customer engagement events have provided a great opportunity for experts at our company to reach customers in their own communities with information that can help them save money and better manage their energy bills,” said Frank Reynolds, President and CEO of UI, SCG, and CNG. “While we’re pleased energy generators’ Standard Service decrease will provide customers relief beginning next month, we know the current economic environment continues to challenge many Connecticut residents. That is why we encourage all our customers to come out to these events to learn a little bit more about the programs we have available to help.”
The town hall will be held at the Ansonia Armory, 5 State Street, Ansonia CT 06401. In addition to bill management programs, many customers have signed up to receive a free energy efficiency audit for their home through EnergizeCT’s Home Energy Solutions program.
Ansonia Mayor David Cassetti will join representatives from UI and SCG at the forum, which will provide a high-level overview of the energy system in Connecticut, how customers can make their homes and businesses more energy efficient, and assistance available to help customers manage their bill.
“I am pleased to join with UI/Avangrid to offer this workshop to our residents,” said Ansonia Mayor David Cassetti. “It’s important to understand all the programs that can help our residents address their energy needs and bills. You will have a first-hand opportunity to ask questions directly to company representatives, and you will learn about any of the new programs that are being offered. I encourage you to join us to learn more about how UI can help you afford and manage your utility costs.”
At the town hall, UI and SCG will also provide customers with information on the following bill management programs:
- Matching Payment Program – Residential customers covered by the Winter Protection Program and who heat by electricity or gas may qualify for the Matching Payment Program. Payment matching will begin on November 1, with early intake through the Community Action Agencies to begin on September 1. If you qualify, we will work with you to develop a monthly budget agreement. If you keep that agreement, we will match your payments to reduce your back balance.
- Bill Forgiveness Program (UI Only) – This program helps low-income customers maintain year-round service and pay down delinquent balances by company-matched dollars. A payment arrangement plan helps qualified hardship customers pay past-due electric bills. Under BFP, if payments are current, a past-due balance can be "forgiven" over time.
- Winter Protection Program – UI and SCG offers winter protection to all our customers that qualify. If you meet eligibility requirements, we will not turn off your electricity or gas between November 1 and May 1. The Winter Protection Plan must be renewed annually, beginning in October. To prevent your service from being shut off after May 1, contact UI or SCG to set up a payment arrangement.
- Flexible Payment Arrangements – UI, SCG, and CNG will work with customers if they are having trouble paying their utility bill. UI, SCG, and CNG offer flexible payment arrangements for all customers needing assistance. These arrangements can be spread out up to 18 months for residential customers and 6 months for non-residential customers. Current payment arrangements may be renegotiated due to a change in financial circumstances Per Conn. Agencies Reg. § 16-3-100(b)(3)(A). These arrangements may be discussed confidentially by calling UI Customer Care Center at 800.722.5584 or SCG Customer Care at 800.659.8299.
- Called to Active Duty? – Customers may qualify for temporary suspension of collections action and disconnection of their electric service if they are called into active duty in the U.S. military.
- Home Energy Solutions-Income Eligible (HES-IE) – Through the Connecticut Energy Efficiency Fund, United Illuminating administers the HES-IE program. This weatherization program is designed to help customers with limited income or financial needs reduce their energy bills.
For more information on financial assistance programs offered by UI, please visit the UI website or call 800.722.5584. For more information on assistance and programs offered by SCG, visit the SCG website or call 800.659.8299. For more information on assistance programs offered by CNG, visit the CNG website or call 860.524.8361 or 203.869.6900.
Though many customers are on the UI Standard Service rate, some customers elect to purchase electricity directly from independent suppliers. Customers are encouraged to review their bill to make sure they know who their supplier of choice is, and the end date of their service. Customers can visit https://energizect.com/rate-board/choosing-a-supplier to compare prices. Please note that hardship customers are not currently eligible to switch to an alternate supplier.
UI is also reminding residents of simple actions they can take to help make their home as efficient as possible and reduce the impact of rising supply costs on their energy bill.
- Install wall-outlet and switch-plate gaskets to reduce the flow of cold air.
- Install storm windows, or purchase window insulator kits to reduce drafts.
- Be sure your home’s insulation meets U.S. Department of Energy specifications for your geographic area, and that ceilings, walls, and floors over unfinished crawl spaces are all properly insulated.
- Insulate hot water pipes.
- Install storm doors to reduce heat transfer to the outside.
Heating & Cooling
- Have your heating equipment periodically checked by a service professional.
- Dust or vacuum radiator surfaces and vents frequently and keep them unobstructed.
- Keep insulated drapes or shades closed in summer and open on sunny winter days. Close curtains or drapes on winter nights to reduce heat loss.
- Close fireplace dampers when not in use to keep heated or cooled air from escaping up the chimney.
- Set the thermostat as low as comfort permits. Each degree above 68º F can use 3% more energy.
- Open windows in spring and fall rather than using air conditioning.
- Install programmable or wi-fi thermostat to automatically control heating and cooling.
- Clean or replace furnace filters periodically, and have your furnace burner checked and cleaned annually.
- Use ceiling or portable fans in place of room air conditioners whenever possible.
- If you use electric heat, consider replacing it with a high efficiency ductless heat pump system, which can cut electricity use by as much as 50 percent.
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