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PSC grants coronavirus-related waivers to utilities


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — The Public Service Commission (PSC) approved a variety of motions allowing utility companies to help customers in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The commission approved Summit Natural Gas of Missouri’s request for a variance in Wednesday’s weekly agenda meeting allowing the company to temporarily waive fees for reconnections of service while customers experience the economic fallout of COVID-19. The waiver is set to continue indefinitely through the current health and financial crisis, and customers are to have 15 days’ notice before fees are reinstated. 

Ameren Missouri was also approved to waive limits on missed, partial, or late payments by their customers throughout the crisis. This waiver comes out of the company’s “Keeping it Current Low-Income Pilot” tariff. It also requested the commission waive its traditional rule requiring a 60-day notice from a utility prior to filing a case with the PSC, which was also allowed in light of the current health situation. 

Spire Missouri was approved for the tariff it had filed to devote $940,000 to customers impacted by COVID-19. The utility company would partner with the United Way to screen customers to receive up to $100 in one-time credits. The money would come from a modification of Spire’s Low-Income Energy Affordability Program and is to use unspent funds from last year. 

The PSC is also taking time to reach a decision on other Spire requests including an infrastructure system replacement surcharge. 

The next PSC agenda meeting is set for April 22. 

EDITOR’S NOTE: For up-to-date information on coronavirus, check with the CDC and DHSS.