CORONAVIRUS

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Public invited to comment on utility COVID-19 response

Docket number: U-200281

Recessed open meeting May 12

Olympia, Wash. - The public is invited to comment at a recessed open meeting on May 12 to address the status and progress of utility efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic. The meeting will specifically focus on COVID-19 debt relief programs, communication and outreach actions for customers with past due balances, development of customer payment plans, and plans to resume credit and collection processes.

The UTC will also assess the July 31, 2021 disconnection moratorium expiration date based on available health and economic data.

WHAT

Virtual-only open meeting

WHO

Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission

WHEN and WHERE

Wednesday, May 12, 2021 9:30 a.m. to noon

Participate by Microsoft Teams  (encouraged, if possible). 

Participate by phone.

Call 253-372-2181 and use conference ID 572 844 433#.

If you intend to speak at the meeting, please sign up by 5 p.m. on May 3 by emailing records@utc.wa.gov or by telephone at 360-664-1234.

Translation services are available at no cost to you. If possible, please inform the commission at least one business day prior to the meeting by calling 360-664-1140, or by sending an email to paige.doyle@utc.wa.gov

If you are unable to participate during the virtual meeting, you can submit comments until 5 p.m. on April 30:

  •  online
  •  via telephone at 888-333-9882,  
  •  by email at comments@utc.wa.gov, or 
  •  by mail to P.O. Box 47250, Olympia, WA 98504. 

BACKGROUND

  • On April 17, 2020, Gov. Jay Inslee issued Proclamation 20-23.2, which bans energy, water, and telecommunication companies from disconnecting customers due to nonpayment, refusing to reconnect residential customers who were disconnected for nonpayment, and charging late fees or reconnection fees. The proclamation is currently set to expire July 31, 2021. 
  • Last year, the UTC organized a COVID-19 response workgroup of stakeholders to facilitate development of guidelines to make sure that customers experiencing economic hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic maintain access to essential services after the proclamation expires. 
  • The UTC previously held COVID-19 response special open meetings on June 16, 2020, Oct. 15, 2020, and Feb. 17, 2021.

For more information on available utility assistance, visit the UTC’s website.

The UTC regulates the rates and services of the state’s investor-owned electric and natural gas utilities, landline telephone companies, and private water systems among other industries. It is the commission’s responsibility to ensure regulated companies provide safe and reliable service to customers at reasonable rates, while allowing them the opportunity to earn a fair profit.

Topic(s)
Consumer
Energy
General