COVID-19 and your utility bills, telecommunications service and broadband

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Worried about your energy bill?

Residential customers who need assistance with their electricity or heating bills because of impacts of the coronavirus should:

Step 1: Be proactive - Contact your utility or propane supplier to ask what kind of protections, funding, flexible payment options, or energy saving tools and resources are available.

Step 2: Get help by calling 211 - Call 2-1-1 and ask how you can get help paying your utility bill or go to www.mi211.org to learn about agencies that may assist you with your energy bill. 

Step 3: State Emergency Relief (SER) Program - Apply directly through MI Bridges for bill payment assistance or call 855-275-6424. Information is required to verify your income so you may want to work with your utility or 2-1-1 first on tips to navigate this process.

Step 4: Apply for a Home Heating Credit Starting January 1st - Visit the Michigan Department of Treasury's website to see if you qualify. Applications are accepted January 1 – September 30 each year. Even though this funding is distributed by the MI Dept. of Treasury, you do not need to pay taxes or wait for a tax return to receive this credit. You can apply any time after January 1. For more information about the Home Heating Credit, see our consumer tip

Even if your income has recently changed due to COVID-19, help is available. Click here for more information about energy assistance.

Business customers who need assistance with their utility bills because of impacts of the coronavirus should:

Step 1: Be proactive - Contact your utility or propane supplier to ask what kind of protections, funding, flexible payment options, or energy saving tools and resources are available. Follow these links for information specific to business customers of Consumers Energy or DTE.

Step 2: Seek federal and/or state assistance - Currently the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is accepting applications for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) –  a forgivable loan intended to help businesses cover payroll, rent, mortgage interest, and utility expenses – and Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) – low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of COVID-19. The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) lists a collection of resources to help Michigan businesses navigating the pandemic. General resources and consumer tips are also available at the MPSC’s business consumer page.

Step 3: Review your current rate structure - Make sure your rate is the best available to suit the needs of your business. Contact your utility company directly to review all available rates or review them yourself.
Electric Rate information | Natural Gas Rate information

As a utility customer, you are responsible for paying for the energy you use and it is important to make every effort to pay your utility bill on time. If you aren't able to pay the bill in full, making a partial payment is better than not paying anything at all. 

Below you will find contact information for regulated utilities:

Alpena Power Co.

989-358-4900, www.alpenapower.com

Aurora Gas Co.

989-733-6625, www.pieg.com

Citizens Gas Fuel Co.

800-982-2831, www.citizensgasfuel.com

Consumers Energy Co.

800-477-5050, www.consumersenergy.com

DTE Energy Co.

800-477-4747, www.dteenergy.com

Indiana Michigan Power Co.

800-672-2231, www.indianamichiganpower.com

Michigan Gas Utilities

800-401-6402, accel.michigangasutilities.com

Northern States Power Co. (Xcel)

800-895-4999, www.xcelenergy.com

Semco Energy Gas Co.

800-624-2019, www.semcoenergygas.com

Superior Energy Co.

888-468-2828, www.secnaturalgas.com

Upper Michigan Energy Resources

800-242-9137, www.uppermichiganenergy.com
for former WEPCO customers

800-450-7260
for former WPSC customers

Upper Peninsula Power Co.

800-562-7680, www.uppco.com

Wisconsin Electric Power Co.

800-242-9137, www.we-energies.com

For additional assistance contact the Michigan Public Service Commission’s Customer Assistance Division at 800-292-9555 or www.michigan.gov/mpsc.

Concerned about your telecommunications or broadband service because of COVID-19?

The Federal Communications Commission issued the “Keep Americans Connected” pledge asking telecommunications and broadband providers to promote connectivity for Americans impacted by disruptions caused by the coronavirus.

Providers signing the pledge agree to not terminate service to, and waive late fees for, any residential or small business customers because they can’t pay their bills because of the pandemic’s disruptions. Providers also agree to temporarily open Wi-Fi hotspots to any American who needs them.

While the Keep Americans Connected pledge expired on June 30, 2020, some of the providers have continued to provide the assistance to residential or small business customers. Some providers have also offered additional services and assistance during the pandemic. Contact your provider directly for questions related to their COVID-19 service offerings. 

In addition, the MPSC, in partnership with other State of Michigan agencies and Connected Nation Michigan, released a publicly available statewide Wi-Fi hotspot map to assist residents who currently lack internet access at home. To find a hotspot site near you, click here.

If you are having financial difficulty obtaining telephone or broadband service, you may possibly qualify for the Lifeline program.

For assistance regarding your landline telephone service, contact the MPSC at 800-292-9555 or www.michigan.gov/mpsc.

Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at www.Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and www.CDC.gov/Coronavirus.