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Blue Ridge Energy Offers Help for Winter Power Bills: Extreme Cold Increases Heating Needs, Impacting Bills
Higher energy bills for many consumers across the region are resulting from North Carolina’s sustained cold temperatures causing increased heating needs.
The number of days with lows below 10 degrees was at nearly an all-time high and the first seven days of 2018 have reportedly been the coldest such period on record for most climate stations in western North Carolina, according to Rays Weather.
Blue Ridge Energy is offering help and additional assistance for its members and customers. Many are seeing relief by spreading payments using Budget Billing or customized payment arrangements, as well as FlexPay for more flexible payment plans.
As a special effort to help members directly with these uncommon expenses, Blue Ridge Energy is re-establishing its So No One Goes Cold campaign. This campaign asks members who can afford to help to contribute and utilizes local helping agencies to identify families in need that can be helped with Operation Round Up crisis heating funds during this critical time of need. Blue Ridge Energy electric members and propane and heating fuel customers are eligible to apply through local helping agencies in each county. A full list of helping agencies is available at: www.BlueRidgeEnergy.com/WeCare.
Please be aware: Blue Ridge Energy is currently experiencing an overload of telephone calls due to the extreme cold weather. Members and customers are encouraged to contact their local helping agencies directly or go online to www.BlueRidgeEnergy.com/WeCare for more information.
For those who would like to contribute to So No One Goes Cold to help with crisis heating assistance, please donate online at: www.BlueRidgeEnergy.com/WeCare or mail a check payable to the Blue Ridge Electric Members Foundation to Blue Ridge Energy, PO Box 112, Lenoir, NC, 28645. All donations are tax deductible and every penny goes to help those in need.
Additionally, Usage Tracker is a free tool that can help members see their daily electricity usage and how weather has impacted their bill. It’s available under My Account at www.BlueRidgeEnergy.com or through the Blue Ridge mobile app.
“We’re concerned about the effect consistently low temperatures are having on people’s budgets,” said Renee Whitener, Blue Ridge Energy director of public relations. “Combined with additional energy we all typically use during the holidays when we’re home doing more cooking, entertaining and heating our homes, many are seeing higher than normal energy bills.
“Blue Ridge Energy is working to help by providing additional crisis heating assistance being made available through So No One Goes Cold, as well as offering flexible payment options to help now and long term,” Whitener said.
Blue Ridge Energy serves 75,000 electric cooperative members in Caldwell, Watauga, Ashe and Alleghany counties as well as parts of Alexander, Wilkes and Avery counties. Blue Ridge Energy’s Propane and Fuels subsidiary offers gas hearth and home products as well as residential and business propane and fuel from the cooperative’s offices in Lenoir, Boone, West Jefferson, Sparta and from offices in Morganton and Independence, Virginia. For more information, visit www.BlueRidgeEnergy.com.