Marshfield Utilities Takes Steps to Prevent Disconnection for At-Risk Customers

The 2018/2019 Wisconsin Public Service Commission Winter Moratorium Set to End April 15th

Marshfield Utilities– Spring brings the end of the moratorium on disconnection of electric service for non-payment. Only a small portion of Marshfield Utilities (MU) customers fall into this category. In February, there was $127,000 in past-due balances over 31 days.

In 2018, there were 215 customers that contacted MU and set-up a payment agreement to get caught up on their bill. However, there were 85 disconnections last April. This is a lose-lose proposition for the customer and Utility alike. MU wants to help.

MU has taken significant measures to reach out to these at-risk customers. “Our goal is to help them understand that the possibility of disconnection is real and also how they can obtain help,” said Ross Larson, Customer Account Supervisor.

To make sure the past-due customer is aware of any balance and date of disconnection, MU has printed the information on the March bill. The March bill also has been mailed in a blaze orange envelope that states “Immediate Action Required”.

In addition, the customer will receive a postcard shortly after they receive their bill to provide another notification of the date of disconnection. The customer will receive an automated reminder call on April 4th to the phone number they provided; customers without a phone number on file will have a disconnection notice placed on their door on April 9th.

In an effort to be proactive, MU is releasing this information to the media to help get the word out. Several other steps have been taken including working with Wood County Human Services staff that handles Energy Assistance requests to provide them information to identify their previous recipients that are in-need.

MU has information on payment extensions and Deferred Payment Agreements online at MarshfieldUtilities.org. Customers can request an extension or Deferred Payment Agreement by calling (715)387-1195 or visiting the MU main utility office located at 2000 South Central in Marshfield. Lastly, MU has complied with Wisconsin State statute and informed affected landlords of the possibility of disconnection at their property.

“There is no winner in a disconnection and all these communications are our attempt to avoid the interruption of service and to make certain our customers are aware of their options,” said Larson.

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Marshfield Utilities is a forward-looking stakeholder-focused organization providing reliable and safe services to our customers while providing value and enhancing quality of life in the community. For more information, please visit www.marshfieldutilities.org or look for us on https://www.facebook.com/marshfieldutilities/.