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Kentucky Power proposing three-step plan to help customers who have fallen behind on bills

Gulf Coast Electric Cooperative announced they will not do member disconnections and will waive late fees during COVID-19. (MGN)
Gulf Coast Electric Cooperative announced they will not do member disconnections and will waive late fees during COVID-19. (MGN)(WJHG)
Published: May. 29, 2020 at 5:44 PM EDT
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With the economic situation worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic, Kentucky Power is proposing a three-step plan to help customers who have fallen behind in their electric bills.

The plan includes a bill credit to eliminate past due balances for customers, a new Flex Pay program giving customers more control over their monthly electric costs and a plan to lessen the impact of a future rate adjustment.

Kentucky Power has asked for approval to provide a bill credit for customers whose accounts are more than 30 days past due as of May 28, 2020. The credits would eliminate all delinquencies for those past due amounts.

“Our customers are facing serious economic challenges in Eastern Kentucky. The pandemic has caused additional hardships for many in the region who were already struggling to make ends meet,” said Brett Mattison, Kentucky Power, president and chief operating officer. “We’re committed to providing essential power to the region in good times and bad and doing everything we can to help our customers. We have made donations to local organizations that provide essential services, and now we want to give our customers a fresh start so they can focus on keeping their families safe and healthy.”

The credit would be a one-time adjustment and customers would be responsible for any future balances accumulated between May 28 and the Commission’s approval.

Kentucky Power is also proposing an additional payment option called Flex Pay. Flex Pay would give customers the ability to pre-pay accounts to help them budget their monthly electricity costs. Customers would not have to pay security deposits or late fees. In order to offer this program, Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) would need to be installed to provide customers with more information to better manage their electricity usage.

A proposal for Flex Pay and to install AMI will be submitted to the Commission on June 29, 2020, as part of a base rate adjustment request.

“We understand the economic uncertainty that our customers are facing and have developed this multi-layered approach to give customers a break, offer them more control of their energy costs going forward and providing an additional year before seeing the impact of any rate adjustments on their bills,” Mattison said.

Complete details of the base rate adjustment request will be available June 29, 2020, when the proposal is filed with the Commission.

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