NIPSCO is reminding customers that bill payment assistance programs will continue to be available after the state’s moratorium on disconnecting electric and natural gas service during the winter months ended on March 15, 2021.
Between December 1 and March 15, electric and natural gas providers in Indiana did not disconnect service to customers enrolled in the state’s Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) who were delinquent on their home heating bills.
Among the programs available to help customers who may have fallen behind on payments or need financial support:
- LIHEAP Program: Support is available to households falling within 150 percent of federal poverty guidelines and is fully funded by a federal block grant offered through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Applications for heating assistance will be accepted through May 14, 2021. Summer cooling assistance will begin in June 2021 if remaining funds are available. Customers can learn more and find out if they qualify at eap.ihcda.in.gov or call 2-1-1.
- NIPSCO Customer Assistance for Residential Energy (CARE) Discount Program: In addition to the assistance available through LIHEAP, the NIPSCO CARE Discount Program is designed to provide further bill reductions to LIHEAP-eligible customers. Once enrolled in LIHEAP, customers are automatically enrolled in the program, and reductions range from 11 to 26 percent, depending on the same criteria used by the state in determining the level of assistance. CARE discounts are available through May 31, 2021, or until funds are exhausted.
- NIPSCO Hardship Program: For customers just outside the federal poverty guidelines for LIHEAP, the NIPSCO Hardship Program offers up to $400 in gas bill assistance to households between 151 and 250 percent of the federal poverty level. Hardship funds are available through many of the same local Community Action Agencies where LIHEAP funds are distributed, and are available through May 31, 2021, or until funds are exhausted.
- Township Trustees: A limited amount of energy assistance funds are available through local Township Trustee offices. NIPSCO customers are encouraged to contact their local Township Trustee to see what help may be available.
- Payment Agreement: NIPSCO has expanded its flexible payment arrangements to allow customers to spread their past due balance over three or six months. Customers can learn more and enroll at NIPSCO.com/paymentplans. LIHEAP customers may qualify for a 12-month payment plan and should call NIPSCO’s Customer Care Center at 1-800-464-7726 to learn more and determine their eligibility.
For more information on billing options and payment assistance, visit NIPSCO.com/PaymentAssistance or call 1-800-4-NIPSCO (1-800-464-7726). In addition to offering a number of payment assistance options, NIPSCO offers a number of energy-efficiency programs to help lower energy usage and bills. Visit NIPSCO.com/Save for more information on available programs and other ways to save.