PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) – APS is giving customers who are struggling to pay their bills more time to get their feet under them and catch up. The state’s largest utility is extending its hold on disconnecting service for past-due accounts through the end of what has been a trying year for so many. The hold was set to expire on Oct. 15.

The decision applies to both residential and business customers. APS said it’s also waiving late fees to “ease the burden” on consumers.

APS has been waiving late fees since March 13, when the coronavirus first flared up in Arizona. The utility also suspended disconnects ahead of the seasonal hold that kicked in on June 1, running through what proved to be the hottest Arizona summer on record. As above-average temperatures continue to dominate the forecast and people are still working through pandemic-induced money woes, APS opted to extend the hold on disconnects through Dec. 31.

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“Across Arizona, we have faced the challenges of this pandemic and record summer temperatures together, and we are here to help and work with our customers,” said APS spokeswoman Monica Whiting said Tuesday. “APS is offering peace of mind for those unable to currently pay their bill.”

While it will not cut power to those who are behind on their bills, APS is urging its customers to look into getting some financial help.

“Programs customers may qualify for could fully cover or significantly reduce past due balances, and it’s a good idea to explore those options now to avoid a potential year-end rush,” and APS news release explains. Chicanos Por La Causa has teamed up with APS to help families with their utility bills. To find out if you qualify, call 602-618-1974. Project SHARE and 211 Arizona are other organizations that might be able to help.

In addition to suggesting outside assistance, APS offers several options for customers who might be having a hard time making ends meet.

APS services nearly 1.3 million homes in 11 of Arizona’s 15 counties.

 

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