Maine Public Utilities
Website: www.maine.gov/mpuc, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
CONTACT: Derek Davidson, (207) 287-1596, email@example.com
May 4, 2006
Maine PUC to Assist
Low Income Families with Electric Bills
AUGUSTA, ME – The Maine Public Utilities Commission (MPUC) has voted to increase the Statewide Low-Income Assistance Plan by 20% to help Maine families keep pace with rising electricity rates. “Low-income families are facing a double barreled threat of high gas prices and high electricity rates,” said Maine PUC Chairman, Kurt Adams. “The decision to increase the funding level of Maine’s Statewide Low Income-Assistance Plan will help ensure that Maine’s most vulnerable citizens have access to affordable electricity.”
The Statewide Plan is designed to make electric bills more affordable for qualified low-income consumers. Consumers who qualify for participation in Maine’s LIHEAP program also qualify for participation in the Statewide Plan. A central fund, managed by the PUC and funded by the electric utilities through their rates finances the Statewide Plan and apportions the fund to these same electric utilities based on the percentage of LIHEAP eligible households in each utility’s service territory. This ensures that funds are available in the areas where the need exists. The planned increase will take the program from $5,790,221 to $6,966,317, beginning on October 1 of this year.
During the 2004/2005 program year, 23,161 electric utility customers participated in the Low Income Program. Joyce Scott, the Executive Director of the Waldo Community Action Partners, stated, “This year, because of the unprecedented cost for gasoline and fuel, the low and fixed income families that we serve are experiencing a year like no other. The PUC's decision to increase the funding level of Maine’s Statewide Low Income-Assistance Plan will help ensure that Maine’s most vulnerable citizens have access to affordable electricity and should alleviate some of the stress and anxiety that customers with limited funds are experiencing.”
The Waldo Community Action Partners is a non-profit community action agency located in Waldo County that makes use of and organizes public and private resources to lessen the impact of poverty on the citizens it serves.
For more information: http://www.maine.gov/mpuc/consumer/cad.html.
All PUC New Releases maybe found on our website at: http://www.maine.gov/mpuc/staying_informed/news/press_release.shtml
To arrange an
interview with Chairman Adams or Commissioners Diamond or Reishus, please
contact Phillip Lindley at 207.287.1598 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Commission’s website may be accessed