Mar 19, 2013

Vectren urges customers to consider payment options

DAYTON--As the winter heating season comes to an end, Vectren Energy Delivery of Ohio (Vectren) wants to remind customers who have received a disconnect notice or any customers in need of bill payment assistance to contact Vectren, 1-800-227-1376 to make payment arrangements and avoid potential disconnection.

All customers, regardless of household income, are encouraged to take advantage of the following free Vectren billing and payment options.

Payment Arrangement: Customers who are having difficulty paying bills in full can request a payment arrangement to fulfill the obligation in smaller increments over a set period of time. Eligible customers can request a payment arrangement for free by calling 1-800-227-1376.

Winter Reconnection Order: Vectren offers a plan that allows customers to pay one-third of the total balance due each month. Customers may use the winter reconnection order to maintain or connect gas service for a maximum payment of $175. If applicable, the appropriate reconnection fee will be billed. These customers must also apply for available energy assistance programs and make a payment arrangement with Vectren for any remaining balances.

Low-income households are encouraged to contact the Ohio Department of Development to inquire about a number of assistance programs, including the following. Other programs may also be available.

Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP): State and federal utility assistance dollars are available for income-eligible customers. Those that fall within 200 percent of federal poverty guidelines should visit their local community action agency to sign up for HEAP or contact the Ohio Department of Development at 1-800-282-0880.

Emergency Home Energy Assistance Program (E-HEAP): E-HEAP provides assistance once per heating season to eligible households that are disconnected or are threatened with disconnection. Those that fall within 200 percent of federal poverty guidelines should visit their local community action agency to sign up for E-HEAP or contact the Ohio Department of Development at 1-800-282-0880.

Percentage of Income Payment Plan Plus (PIPP Plus): PIPP Plus calls for a qualified household to pay the greater of $10 per month or 6 percent of its monthly income for gas service throughout the year. To be eligible for the PIPP Plus program, a customer must receive his or her primary or secondary heat source from a company regulated by the Public Utility Commission of Ohio (PUCO), must have a total household income which is at or below 150 percent of the federal poverty level, and must apply for all energy assistance programs for which he or she is eligible. Contact the Ohio Department of Development at 1-800-282-0880 for more information.

Finally, all customers are encouraged to follow a number of free and low-cost energy conservation tips to help reduce gas consumption year-round. Many more tips can be found at www.vectren.com/conservation or by calling 1-866-240-8476.

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