Gulf Coast Electric Cooperative suspending disconnections during COVID-19

Gulf Coast Electric Cooperative announced they will not do member disconnections and will waive late fees during COVID-19. (MGN)

WEWAHITCHKA, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Gulf Coast Electric Cooperative announced Tuesday they will not do member disconnections and will waive late fees during the coronavirus COVID-19.

“This decision was made in order to support our members during the COVID-19 pandemic,” GCEC CEO/General Manager John Bartley said. “We took this step to reduce stress and to provide local families and businesses with certainty during an uncertain time.”

“Our members need to realize that these disconnect suspensions are not bill waivers,” Bartley said. “We encourage our members who are unable to pay their full balances at this time to contact our offices. We are always willing to work with our members on a payment plan or to see if they qualify for assistance, and now is no exception.”

“Members should pay at least a portion of their bill as they are able. Taking this simple step can help avoid a large multi-month balance when the pandemic is over.”

Customers may see a surge in home energy use because of the amount of time spent indoors during the pandemic so the company gave a few tips to avoid a higher bill.

• They say to program your thermostat to maximize energy savings.
• When doing laundry, do full loads and wash with cold water.
• Air dry dishes.
• They say use LED lights instead of conventional light bulbs.
• And, they say to unplug appliances and electronics when not in use.

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