Georgia Power remains committed to working with customers amid COVID-19 concerns
Submitted by Kevin Kastner, Vice President of Customer Service, Georgia Power
Since the start of the COVID- 19 pandemic, Georgia Power has recognized the extraordinary burden our customers have faced due to impacts from the coronavirus, and we continue to work to help all customers maintain service. Our teams are ready to assist our customers and answer any questions they may have about their account. We know that our customers and their families are navigating difficult times. We want to be there for them and encourage customers in need to contact us. We have been committed to helping our customers manage their energy usage to avoid large overdue balances. That’s why when Georgia Power suspended disconnections in mid-March, we began working with our customers on how they could save money through energy efficiency tips and helped connect them with energy assistance programs to help with their monthly payments. We are committed to ensuring that the uninterrupted energy our customers need to keep their daily life running is there, while always staying focused on keeping our employees and our communities safe. As the disconnection suspension was extended, ultimately covering four months, we worked with the Georgia Public Service Commission to develop special payment options to help customers with past due account balances and, most importantly, help them maintain service. We have worked aggressively to inform customers about our special payment plans, and the options we provide to help maintain their service. Customers with past-due balances may have heard from us via direct emails, automated phone calls and text messages, door hangers or on-bill messages. Our teams shared these customer options through press releases, radio and social media announcements and news-media interviews. We are continuing to reach out to our customers every day to work with them to ensure each has the information they need to help keep their accounts active.
Our customers, who accumulated past-due balances during the COVID-19 pandemic and have yet to take advantage of a special payment plan, can still sign-up by visiting www.GeorgiaPower.com/ paymentplan or calling Georgia Power Customer Service at 1-888-660-5890. Additionally, if a customer or someone in their family is considered medically fragile as part of Governor Kemp’s executive order on July 31, we ask that they contact us to help ensure that they will not be disconnected. As of now, more than 90,000 customers have signed up for our special payment plan and will pay past-due balances over a six-month timeframe between October 2020 and March 2021, with no late fees. Customers on our PrePay plan can make payments for current energy usage with just 25 percent of their payments going toward their outstanding balance. No late fees will be charged on outstanding balances paid before April 2021.
We also continue to partner with nonprofit, community and faith-based organizations to offer assistance programs to those in need. These include a senior citizen discount of up to $24 a month, a more than 30-year partnership with The Salvation Army’s Project SHARE and the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program. Any customer who needs additional support can learn more by visiting www.GeorgiaPower.com/Assistance or by calling our Customer Service team.
Recognizing the difficulties many customers are enduring, we also increased our community giving to address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic through a $1 million investment this spring by the Georgia Power Foundation. This investment is focused on making an impact to food security, homelessness and displaced worker assistance throughout the state.
As we’ve said before, we are more than your energy provider; we are your partner. We are your neighbors, and we live and work in your communities across the state. That has never been more true than it is today, and we want to work together with all of our customers to meet their energy needs. All of us at Georgia Power continue to be here for our communities, providing safe and reliable energy 24/7 during these unprecedented times.