Cold Weather Rule protection begins Oct. 15
CenterPoint Energy is reminding customers about their rights and responsibilities under the Cold Weather Rule (CWR), which protects residential customers from having their natural gas service disconnected between Oct. 15 and April 15, 2013, if they are having difficulty paying their natural gas bill.
While the CWR does not prevent customers from being disconnected for nonpayment, it does provide customers extra protection as defined in the CWR, but residential customers must contact CenterPoint Energy to establish a payment plan and maintain their payment plan obligations.
“The Cold Weather Rule is available for everyone who needs it and we are here to help our customers take the first step,” said Joe Vortherms, division regional vice president of Gas Operations in a news release. “Additionally, the rule helps customers whose service is currently disconnected; therefore, customers need to call us now to establish a payment plan and get their natural gas service restored before winter.”
Customers who anticipate having trouble paying their natural gas bill in full, receive a notice of proposed disconnection or need service reconnected are urged to call CenterPoint Energy to establish a payment plan.
The payment plan will include what is owed, as well as the amount to be billed, and will take into consideration a customer’s financial situation and any other special circumstances.
The payment plan must also be agreeable to both the customer and CenterPoint Energy. If an agreed-upon payment plan cannot be reached, customers have a right to appeal under the CWR.