Golden Valley Electric Association members who are experiencing financial difficulty caused by the pandemic still have a few more days to apply for a monthly payment plan to avoid being disconnected.
“We recognize that people have been impacted in a lot of different ways,” says Golden Valley spokesperson Meadow Bailey. “Whether they lost their jobs, they had their hours cut back or somebody else who was responsible for part of the bills is not able to pay.”
Bailey says the need for the COVID-19 Hardship Protection program is clear, because more than a thousand people have already signed up. And many of those who are behind in paying their electric bills may also qualify.
“Because of covid, our delinquent residential accounts have increased by about 25 percent, so we do know there’s a lot of people who are obviously impacted,” she said in a Thursday interview.
Members who want to apply for the hardship protection must download and fill-out two forms available on the GVEA website or at the co-op’s office on Illinois Street in Fairbanks. One is a sworn hardship statement affirming that the member is unable to pay the electric bill due to financial hardship caused by covid.
“And the second form is asking that residents will enter into an agreement with GVEA for a payment plan to spread those payments out over the next 10 months,” Bailey said.
Those forms must be submitted by close of business Wednesday. The plan becomes effective on Thursday, April 1.
Bailey says Golden Valley’s website also has information on other resources to help members who are struggling with covid-related financial hardship. Those can be found on the COVID-19 link on website, gvea.com.