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UTC hosting virtual public meeting on COVID-19 utility response

The Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission is hosting a virtual public meeting to review utility guidelines for customer assistance during the coronavirus pandemic.

The commission will be reviewing a proposed term sheet that outlines suggested guidelines for electric and natural gas utilities to follow after expiration of the statewide mandate on pausing utility disconnects.

The statewide moratorium preventing utilities from disconnecting service is in effect until Oct. 15.  

Key recommendations on the term sheet prepared by a COVID-19 response work group include a moratorium on nonpayment disconnections until April 30 and late fee and deposit waivers for new customers through Oct. 27, 2021, in addition to requesting that utilities refrain from sending active accounts to collection agencies or reporting nonpayment to credit bureaus through Oct. 27, 2021.

The response work group also recommended that utilities must establish long-term payment arrangements for up to 18 months for residential customers and six months for small commercial customers.

The meeting is scheduled for 1-5 p.m. Tuesday.  Participants can join by calling (360) 407-4810 and entering conference ID: 648699.

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