Colchester, VT, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — April 2, 2007 – U. S. utility Green Mountain Power will spend $1 million to fund a three-year pilot program to assist low income customers. The program has been developed together with the AARP (American Association of Retired Persons) a nonprofit, nonpartisan membership organization for people age 50 and over in the United States.
The Vermont Public Service Board has approved the pilot program, which will provide a discount on monthly energy charges to eligible low-income customers after Green Mountain Power’s acquisition by Gaz Metro is completed.
“As a result of discussions in the regulatory process for our merger agreement with Gaz Metro, Green Mountain Power proposed that $1 million be devoted to fund a three-year pilot program to assist low-income customers,” said Chris Dutton, Green Mountain Power president and chief executive officer. “We hope the pilot program will help us and the state better understand the needs of the low-income community so that we can determine the best, most effective ways to help customers who struggle with their electric bills.”
The terms of the program will see Green Mountain Power providing a 10 per cent discount for participating low-income customers, who would also be protected from disconnection when the weather is expected to be below freezing. The program will be available to customers whose annual household income is at or below 200 per cent of the federal poverty level.
“We’re pleased that the Vermont Public Service Board and Green Mountain Power recognize the positive impact an electric assistance program like this can have on our most vulnerable Vermont households,” said Philene Taormina, AARP Vermont advocacy director. “It represents an important first step in addressing a critical affordability problem facing thousands of Vermonters.”