Potomac Edison administers several emergency assistance programs for low income customers. Some programs are funded by the state of Maryland and federal government. Other options exist for situations such as a medical emergency, or customers can look into payment plans and other direct aid that Potomac Edison administers. A number of resources can assist those customers who are in need of help due to some type of special situation or hardship.
Two of the main programs that low income Potomac Edison customers can apply for are the Maryland Energy Assistance Program (MEAP) as well as the Electric Universal Service Program (EUSP). Both of them were created by, and are paid for, by the Maryland Department of Human Resources and the Office of Home Energy Programs. Call 1-800-352-1446.
MEAP offers energy conservation/weatherization programs, as well as cash grants and direct financial aid. This state program promotes energy conservation for Potomac Edison families, customer financial responsibility and energy independence. Another component, a cash grant, helps low income customers pay their fuel and electric bills.
EUSP is a state program for paying electric bills for low income customers. Financial help may be provided whether customers have had their service terminated, if they are currently active with their electric service, or even if they owe outstanding bills and are applying for new service. Other benefits may include weatherization, arrearage retirement/fee waivers, or general utility bill assistance.
The federal government pays for the Utility Service Protection Plan (USPP). It is Maryland’s version of LIHEAP, and it can help low income Potomac Edison customers pay their electric bills during the winter season.
Balanced billing, or the Average Payment Plan, will help customers pay their bills on a monthly basis, and it will charge people a fixed dollar amount. This eliminates the spikes in bills that occur during the winter and summer. Your monthly electric bill will be based on the average usage during the previous 12 months. There is no cost to sign up for this service, and it is offered for all customers. Just call and request it.
Payment Plans and extensions can be provided to people faced with a short term hardship. Potomac Edison may be able to sign up customers for a program that will provide them more time to pay their electric bill. However some form of partial payment will still continue to need to be made.
Another program is the Extended Due Date. Families with the primary customer who is at least 60 years old and who also receives a pension or Social Security check may be qualified. Assistance may also be offered for Potomac Edison customers who are disabled and receive some form of government or public assistance. This extended due date is offered if your electric bill is due before your monthly check, and the payment date can be pushed back to account for this timing.
Another extension can be offered from the Military Deferred Payment Program. If your household is having financial difficulties or behind because their family members have been called to active military duty, then this extension may be an option.
Potomac Edison customers who participate in this financial assistance program may elect to defer paying either all or part of their monthly utility or electric bill. However the money will be due once the service member returns home. When that occurs a payment plan may be signed up for. Call 1-800-736-3401
Customers with medical conditions or a hardship can explore the Medical Certification as well as The Critical Customer Care Program. Low income customers with a severe medical condition may be able to prevent a disconnection if a licensed doctor has confirmed it. Or if you use critical or life sustaining medical equipment that is life sustaining, Potomac will work with customers to ensure they are notified of power outages, and they may be able to help keep power on.
The Community Energy Fund (CEF) is a donation program; it provides financial assistance to qualifying residential customers of Potomac Edison who need help paying their electric bill in a crisis. Local non-profits, like the Salvation Army and community action agencies, run CEF throughout the service territory.
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