CARES Act Funds for Utility Bills Available Through End of Year

September 15, 2020, 11:30 AM HST · Updated September 15, 11:30 AM
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Customers challenged by the financial impact of COVID-19 are urged to apply now for utility bill assistance from government and nonprofit sources. Millions of dollars in federal CARES Act funding are available only until the end of the year.

Customers are encouraged to take advantage of Hawaiian Electric’s special payment arrangement plans to help keep past due balances manageable. Go to www.hawaiianelectric.com/paymentarrangement to learn more about the interest-free plan options for residential and business customers.

“It’s critical for customers to apply for assistance if the COVID-19 pandemic has caused financial strain for their household or business. The time to act is now. It helps everyone in Hawaiʻi when these federal funds are injected into our local economy,” said Shelee Kimura, Hawaiian Electric senior vice president of customer service. “We’re also offering special payment arrangement plans to help ease the burden for customers – but we need to hear from you in order for us to help.”

Deadlines for some assistance programs are fast-approaching while others are nearing their funding limits. The company notes that it’s important for customers to apply while assistance is still available. Eligibility requirements vary.

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In Maui County, CARES funding is available through the Hawaiʻi Emergency Laulima Partnership (H.E.L.P.) Program – $500 to $1,250 per household up to three times to assist with utilities, mortgage, rent, insurance, or childcare

Since April 1, the County of Maui has committed about $10 million toward its H.E.L.P. Program in an effort to assist residents with paying for food, medicine, rent and utilities.

Maui Economic Opportunity administers the program in partnership with the County.

Qualified applicants cannot have more than $5,000 in liquid assets and only one individual per household may receive assistance.

To apply and view the full list of qualifications, visit meoinc.org

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