PG&E to extend the moratorium on utility service disconnections
Moratorium will continue through Sept. 30
-Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) announced this week that it will extend the moratorium on utility service disconnections through Sept. 30, 2021. The moratorium was put in place in March 2020 by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC).
“We believe extending the service disconnection moratorium for all customers allows for additional relief efforts from the state to take shape while protecting our customers who are financially struggling,” said Marlene Santos, PG&E Executive Vice President and Chief Customer Officer.
As part of the company’s ongoing efforts to help customers manage their bills, PG&E will auto-enroll eligible customers in new extended payment plans by the end of September to coincide with the potential ending of the moratorium.
Additional changes to COVID-19 emergency customer protections
While the moratorium has been extended, other emergency customer protections put in place by the CPUC during the pandemic have expired.
Recertifications and Post-Enrollment Verifications for the California Alternate Rates for Energy (CARE) and Family Electric Rate Assistance (FERA) programs have resumed.
- CARE/FERA customers whose program eligibility would have expired between March 4, 2020 and June 30, 2021 will be required to re-certify. Customers whose program eligibility expired on or after July 1, 2021 will be required to recertify within 90 days.
- The earliest a customer may be removed from CARE/FERA is Oct. 1, 2021 after a series of direct mail and targeted email communications.
PG&E has helped almost 300,000 residential customers enroll in CARE since February 2020 providing income-qualified customers with a monthly discount. In addition, Medical Practitioner Certifications for the Medical Baseline Program have resumed.
- Active Medical Baseline customers who have enrolled in the program under the consumer protections and customers with non-permanent medical conditions as designated by their medical practitioners will be required to recertify for their continued eligibility. PG&E will proactively communicate with Medical Baseline customers and remind them of their upcoming recertifications.
- The transition coincides with the launch of PG&E’s new online Medical Baseline medical practitioner portal. This new portal will allow customers and their medical practitioners to complete the Medical Baseline certification/recertification process fully online. The new online application is accessible at pge.com/medicalbaseline.
In 2020, 192,000 customers were enrolled in PG&E’s Medical Baseline Program. As of June 2021, there are more than 256,000 PG&E residential customers signed up for Medical Baseline.
PG&E has proactively reached out to almost 400,000 impacted customers since the start of the pandemic and continues to partner with local Community Based Organizations to support customers.
PG&E says it is dedicated to helping customers as the company slowly moves back to more normal billing operations later this year. For more information log onto pge.com/covid19, pge.com and pge.com/news.