With the colder weather well on its way, Vectren Energy Delivery said Monday that it is extending call center support hours for the month of October.
Vectren said this month is traditionally a very active one for natural gas customers who are preparing for colder temperatures by reconnecting gas service or inquiring about energy assistance programs.
Customers may call 1-800-227-1376 to speak with a customer service specialist Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
In addition to the regular service hours, customer service specialists will be available Saturdays in October from 8 a.m. until noon, Vectren said.
This year, customers also have the option of using a live web chat for customer service assistance.
“It is important to increase our flexibility during this busy season,” Colleen Ryan, president of Vectren Energy Delivery of Ohio, said. “As we prepare to enter the heating season, we often see higher than normal call volumes during regular business hours and are offering the seasonal Saturday hours as a benefit to our customers.”
Beginning Nov.1, income-qualified households are also encouraged to contact their local community action agency or the Ohio Department of Development at 1-800-282-0880 to inquire about a number of assistance programs, including:
• Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP): State and federal utility assistance dollars are available for income-eligible customers. Households must fall within 200 percent of federal poverty guidelines, which would be about $47,000 for a family of four, to apply.
• Emergency Home Energy Assistance Program (E-HEAP): E-HEAP provides assistance once per heating season to eligible households that are disconnected or are threatened with disconnection. Households must fall within 200 percent of federal poverty guidelines to apply.
• Percentage of Income Payment Plan Plus (PIPP Plus): PIPP Plus calls for a qualified household to pay 6 percent of its monthly income for gas service throughout the year. To be eligible for the PIPP Plus program, a customer must receive his or her primary or secondary heat source from a company regulated by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio, must have a total household income which is at or below 150 percent of the federal poverty, which would be about $35,000 for a family of four, and must apply for all energy assistance programs for which he or she is eligible.
• Project TEEM: Vectren’s Project Teaching Energy Efficiency Measures helps qualifying Ohio customers implement energy efficiency improvements to their homes at no cost. Households must fall within 300 percent of federal poverty guidelines, which would be about $70,000 for a family of four, to apply. Call 1-800-617-2673 to learn more or visit www.cap-dayton.org.