Thousands of families receive help every year from PUDs, including Snohomish County. A focus is on offering assistance and savings to seniors and qualified low income customers who are struggling to make ends meet and pay their bills. Depending on the program and the applicant’s qualifications and circumstances, the financial assistance and credit programs offer discounts of 20, 40 and 60 percent off their normal monthly rates. Or direct financial aid may be offered.
In general, discounts and assistance is offered for seniors and the elderly who have a household annual income that is less than 125 percent of the federal government poverty guidelines and thresholds. Additional discounts and savings are provided for senior citizens who are 62 years of age or older, provided they also meet certain low income guidelines. These year-round discounts are offered directly by PUD. Qualified low-income customers who qualify for the program can provide reductions of 20 to 60 percent on their monthly bills. Not only can the savings be for electric bills, but the discount can even be offered for water expenses.
Another one of the main Snohomish County Public Utility District programs is Project PRIDE. This is partly paid for by donations and contributions from customers and employees. Project PRIDE is an emergency financial assistance program that can help working poor and low-income customers pay their bills and prevent a disconnection. It is paid for by voluntary donations from contributions to PUD. The American Red Cross of Snohomish County Washington also participates in the program.
Providing Relief for Individuals Dependent on Energy, or Project PRIDE, is an energy bill assistance program that was created to provide emergency funds for struggling and low income individuals and families. Money can help the needy pay a portion of their monthly energy bills. Most of the financial assistance and funding is provided from October through April, and the money can help keep homes and apartments warm during the cold winter months. While as indicated the program is primarily funded by contributions and donations from PUD customers, the American Red Cross of Snohomish County provides administration of the program. They accept and process applications, and disburse money to the needy. Applicants need to have a notice of disconnection of service from Snohomish County PUD. In addition, the family who is applying cannot have received a grant (such as LIHEAP) from the federal government low income home energy program. Call 425-252-4103.
Helping Hands is another resource that is funded by PUD employees. Funds can be used to assist low-income senior citizens with paying their heating and utility bills.
The Snohomish County Public Utility District budget payment plan was created to help make bill paying easier and help people plan their future expenses. This works as the PUD will calculate equal payments for customers each month throughout the year. This particular budget plan is available at any time of the year to customers with a zero balance. It doesn’t matter someone’s income or age. As long as you have a valid account and a zero balance, budget billing is an option.
That being said, the PUD does recommend that customers obtain one year of service at their current address before starting this plan. This is encouraged as it will help ensure that an accurate payment amount is established. To learn more or apply, call or stop by in person at any PUD office. Customer service representatives are available over the phone or in person, and they can quote you a monthly payment and answer any other questions.
Call Snohomish County PUD at 425-783-1000. You can learn more about these assistance and savings programs, or other options such as LIHEAP or weatherization.
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