Under new rules approved by the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC), electric customers behind on their bills will have more time to pay off their balances with more manageable monthly payments. UniSource also is giving gas customers more time to pay.
Beginning on the bill received after January 18, 2021, residential gas and electric customers with overdue balances or existing payment arrangements will be enrolled in new 8-month payment arrangements. The overdue balance will be divided into eight monthly installments. The new plans will replace the six-month payment arrangements that UniSource set up in October for customers who had fallen behind during the summer.
Customers must pay the monthly installment amount in addition to their new monthly bills in full and on time or could be subject to a disconnection and late fees, which have resumed in 2021. Customers with payment arrangements are ineligible for a payment extension.
“It’s been an incredibly challenging year for our community and we know, between the pandemic and the record heat this summer, that some customers are behind on their bills and seeking a solution,” said Denise Richerson, Director of Customer Services and Programs.
“Customers are still responsible for paying for the energy they use, but we’re ready to help them work through the options that might be right for them,” she added.
Low-income customers are encouraged to apply for a monthly discount through UniSource’s CARES program. For electric customers, the ACC expanded eligibility for this program to include households with income of up to 200 percent of the federal poverty level (FPV). Visit uesaz.com/customer-assistance for more information.
Bill payment assistance also may be available for low-income customers through local agencies with access to federal Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funds administered by Wildfire. Please contact these agencies directly for short-term bill payment assistance:
- Arizona Community Action Association 602-604-0640
- Community Information and Referral Services 800-352-3792
- Department of Economic Security-Community Services 800-352-3792
- Western Arizona Council of Governments (Mohave County) 928-753-6247
- The Salvation Army (Kingman) 928-718-2600
- The Salvation Army (Lake Havasu City) 928-680-3678
- Southeastern Arizona Community Program 520-287-5066
While additional funding is available, there may be a delay in receiving assistance due to an increase in applications, so please be patient.
UniSource also offers many energy-efficiency tips, programs and services, including free home weatherization assistance for eligible low-income customers. Please visit uesaz.com for information about these programs and services and assistance through these community agencies.
Customers with questions about our low-income assistance programs, their account or this new payment arrangement, should call UniSource Customer Care at 877-837-4968.