Virginia SCC extends Utility Service Cut-off Moratorium to Oct. 5

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RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC)– The Virginia State Corporation Commission announced Tuesday that it will extend the Utility Service Cut-off Moratorium until Oct. 5.

The announcement comes after Gov. Ralph Northam asked the commission to extend it at a press conference earlier that day.

“These are important steps to help families keep the lights on while facing economic hardship,” Northam said.

The ban was originally set to expire on Monday, Aug. 31, and was later extended to Sept. 16. However, the SCC this is the final extension said it will not extend the moratorium beyond Oct. 5.

We hope the General Assembly uses this additional time to act on this recommendation.

Since we first imposed the moratorium on March 16, 2020, we have warned repeatedly that this moratorium is not sustainable indefinitely. The mounting costs of unpaid bills must eventually be paid, either by the customers in arrears or by other customers who themselves may be struggling to pay their bills. Unless the General Assembly explicitly directs that a utility’s own shareholders must bear the cost of unpaid bills, those costs will almost certainly be shifted to other paying customers.

Virginia State Corporation Commission

The commission added customers who are trying to pay their bills through methods like extended payment plans will be protected from service cut-offs even after the end of the moratorium.

You can find more details about the moratorium online here.

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