Peru Utilities has suspended nonpayment service disconnections and late fees amid the coronavirus outbreak.
The utility’s service board voted on and passed a resolution on the matter on Wednesday.
A copy of the resolution, posted to the utility’s Facebook page, cited Gov. Eric Holcomb’s March 6 declaration of a public health emergency amid the COVID-19 crisis and President Donald Trump’s March 13 declaration of a national emergency.
Because “restrictions imposed by The State of Indiana to contain COVID-19 are economically harmful to customers of Peru Utilities,” the resolution reads, a “moratorium of all nonpayment service disconnections for Peru Water, Peru Wastewater, Grissom Water, Grissom Wastewater, Stormwater, and Electric will be implemented until April, 30th 2020.”
The resolution also places a moratorium on all late fees after March 18 (it does not expunge such fees in place before that date).
“This resolution will be re-evaluated on or before April, 30th for the need of an extension of the nonpayment moratorium,” it says. “This resolution shall grant the General Manager the authority to make the determination if an extension is required on a 30 day basis thereafter.”
Though past due amounts and disconnect notices will continue to appear on customers’ bills, “to keep the customer informed of their account balance,” no disconnect action will be taken.
Once the moratorium ends, customers will be expected to pay their past due balance divided equally over the next three billing cycles along with their regular monthly charges.
“The customer is responsible for making payment arrangements with the Customer Service Staff for the extended payment period,” the resolution says.