TUCSON (Nov. 1 , 2021) –UniSource Energy Services has partnered with the Arizona Department of Economic Security (DES) for a program that provides $36 million in federal funding to eligible renters to pay their overdue natural gas and electric bills to ensure continued service.
Alongside UniSource, several other private utilities are participating in the program: Tucson Electric Power, Arizona Public Service, Salt River Project and Southwest Gas. The utilities have committed to contacting potentially eligible customers to see if they qualify for bill payment assistance and help them apply.
To qualify, a household must rent and have a household income less than or equal to 80 percent of the Area Median Income. Customers must be behind on their utility bills and the account must be in their name.
Customers can find out if they qualify for federal assistance by referencing an eligibility table on the UniSource website or by simply calling UniSource Customer Care at 1-877-837-4968. Customers also can self-qualify by completing this brief form.
Once a customer’s eligibility is confirmed, DES will release funds to the utility to apply to the customer’s account. Customers also may qualify for funding to pay future utility bills.
UniSource informing renters about the availability of utility bill assistance through several marketing efforts, including the distribution of information at community agencies, emails, newsletters and a note on billing statements, among other measures.
“We’re excited about the potential for this partnership,” said Susan Gray, UniSource President and Chief Executive Officer. “Leveraging our shared resources will help us achieve our common goal of ensuring federal COVID-19 relief funds are used efficiently and effectively to help those most impacted by this pandemic.”
The announcement of the utility assistance funding comes as the U.S. Energy Information Administration reports that American households will spend more money on energy this winter compared to last year.
UniSource Energy Services provides safe, reliable and affordable energy to more than 256,000 customers across Arizona. We provide electric service to about 98,000 customers in Mohave and Santa Cruz counties and natural gas service to 163,000 customers in Northern and Southern Arizona. UniSource is owned by UNS Energy, a subsidiary of Fortis Inc., which owns utilities that serve more than 3 million customers across Canada and in the United States and the Caribbean.
Media Contact: Sherri Cadeaux