Mar 22, 2021
The work is part of a dual-purpose project which will upgrade the electric... Read more
We all need a hand sometimes. We're here to help.
If you or someone you know could use energy assistance, PUD 3 has programs for customers who are having difficulties paying their bill or need to adjust their energy use to keep their bills in control.
The Mason County Community Action Council (CAC) energy assistance opened today, September 22. Customers are encouraged to call CAC or go online to prequalify for help with their electric bill.
Online: To prequalify online, go to www.caclmt.org
By Phone: To prequalify by phone, call (360) 426-9726.
Please help us spread the word by sharing this information with anyone who may be in need of assistance. We encourage PUD customers to call as soon as possible as the funds are distributed on a first come, first served basis.
The CAC manages the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). LIHEAP is a federally funded program, helping families stay safe and healthy through financial help with energy costs. The program begins in the fall and continues until all funds are committed.
The Treasury Rent Assistance Program (T-RAP) Grant is part of Washington State’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Funds are available to help with rental and utility assistance for households impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Customers must meet all three eligibility requirements:
PUD 3 has partnered with these local agencies to help qualify customers for both rental and utility assistance.
*Generally, utility expenses include electricity, gas, water/sewage, garbage disposal, and internet.
During the coronavirus emergency, PUD 3 has suspended disconnections, disconnect notices, and waived late fees.
If you are concerned about keeping your account current, we can help you figure out how to move forward. The best thing you can do is call us at (360) 426-8255 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and talk about your options. We can set up payment arrangements and get you in contact with agencies that can help you with your bills. PUD 3 partners with Community Action Council for the issuance of our project share fund and Energy Assistance, they can be reached at (360) 426-9726 or find more information on their website.
Below are a few other partners that may be able to help during these times:
Contact Community Action Council (CAC) at 360-426-9726 or visit their website at www.caclmt.org to schedule an appointment to find out if you qualify for Federal LIHEAP funds. Assistance amounts are determined by household size, income, heat source and the previous year’s energy usage and are based on availability of funds.
Senior Discount Qualifications: Must be at least 61 years of age; the PUD account must be in the applicant's name; the total yearly disposable household income cannot exceed $40,000; must be a permanent, year-round PUD 3 customer; and must not participate in a federally subsidized housing program. The discount amounts to the removal of the daily system charge. A discount application form is available from the PUD, or online here.
Low-Income Disabled Qualifications: The PUD account must be in the applicant's name; the total yearly disposable household income cannot exceed $40,000; must be a permanent, year-round PUD 3 customer; and must not participate in a federally subsidized housing program. This discount also removes the daily system charge. Call the Community Action Council at (360) 426-9726 to schedule a qualification appointment.
If financial problems make it unable for you to pay your bill, please call us or visit one of the PUD offices to make a payment arrangement.
We want to help, so be ready to clearly let us know what’s causing your payment problem. We’ll need a commitment on your part to work with us to take care of the unpaid balance.
Our customer service representatives work with all customers. They specialize in referring customers to assistance agencies that may be able to provide financial aid (such as the Community Action Council of Mason County).
Energy Assistance Appointments, with Community Action Council of Mason County, can be scheduled online.
Winter Moratorium for Electric Heat Customers
A customer may qualify for protection from disconnection of his/her electric service from November 15 through March 15 under the winter shut-off moratorium if he/she: notifies PUD 3 of the inability to pay the bill within five (5) business days of receiving a past due notice; has applied to the Community Action Council (CAC) for low-income energy assistance and is qualified to receive assistance on his/her PUD 3 account; has applied to CAC for low income weatherization assistance; and agrees to and maintains a payment plan.
For more information, please call PUD 3 at (360) 426-8255.
Mason PUD 3’s electric assistance programs are very effective in providing a helping hand to customers in need. The Low Income Fiber Discount expands assistance programs to fiber Consumers and allows qualifying low income households to see a slight reduction in broadband access costs.
This discount amounts to a $10/month reduction in wholesale costs to the retail service provider. Participating retailers have made a commitment to not only pass on the discount to the end user, but to match it with an additional $10/month discount. This means, qualifying customers are eligible to receive a $20 discount on their internet bill.
The result of this partnership brings the estimated retail cost of high speed broadband on PUD 3 fiber (1000Mbps down/up) for qualifying low income customers to lower than the published DSL rates in Mason County.
Mason PUD 3 is the first public utility in Washington State to offer assistance programs for fiber access.
Qualifying Consumers must meet the program requirements for Low Income Senior Citizens & Disabled Customers (see above). This offering is limited to locations where PUD 3 fiber access is available. The Fiberhood Construction Adder is not eligible for this discount.
Your unique Budget Billing amount is based on your location’s historical usage. The program works by estimating your yearly bill based on your past usage, and then dividing that estimated amount into equal monthly payments over a 12-month period.
Your actual energy usage is still calculated each month. We encourage you to review your monthly credit balance and usage throughout the year, and call customer service to discuss adjusting your budget amount. Paying too much or not enough, could have an adverse effect on your future budget bill amount. The goal is to have a zero balance after paying your May bill.
Your budget bill will have an "Account Budget Balance" section on the back, just below your account breakdown. This section shows your budget bill amount; payments on the account; your current (actual usage) charges; and any credit or balance variance.
Budget bill amounts are reviewed and recalculated in May. The annual May review takes into consideration the previous 12 months usage and any balance or credit on the account. A remaining balance or credit will be averaged out over the next 12 months budget payment.
We recommend having 12 months of usage history prior to signing up for Budget Billing.
If you sign up for budget billing without 12 months of usage history, your budget amount will be based on the previous occupant’s usage. Additionally, if there is no past usage for your location (for example, if you moved into a newly constructed home or building, or a previously vacant location), there is no usage history to base your budget amount on.
You may sign up for Budget Billing at any time. The only requirement is your account must be current, with a zero-balance. However, we don’t recommend signing up for Budget Billing until you have at least 12 months of billing history. We believe a full 12 months of personal usage provides a better experience for our customers.
Project Share is an assistance program that was started in 1983 to assist low-income customers, as certified by the Community Action Council, with their electric bills. The program is a joint effort of PUD 3, the Community Action Council (CAC), churches, interested citizens, and PUD 3 customers.
Through the generosity of donors, low income families can receive help with a $175 payment on their account. To find out if you qualify call the Community Action Council at (360) 426-9726 or visit their website here.
Mason County Community Action Council is open Mon-Thurs from 7am - 5:30pm.
Please call Monday mornings at 10am for Project Share appointments.
PUD 3 offers a wide variety of programs that can improve energy efficiency for electrically heated homes. Incentives include upgrading a heating system, increasing insulation, rebates on new energy efficient appliances, and many more possibilities.