FortisBC will be pausing all power disconnections and late fees for the foreseeable future amid the COVID-19 crisis. (File photo)

FortisBC pausing power disconnections and late-fees amid COVID-19 crisis

Company says they plan to work with customers affected by COVID-19 on a “one on one” basis

FortisBC has discontinued late fees and paused all non-payment related disconnections amid the COVID-19 crisis.

This comes after BC Hydro announced they are offering a three-month bill credit for residential customers and small businesses who have been affected by the pandemic.

READ MORE: BC Hydro offers three-month bill ‘holiday’ for those affected by COVID-19

FortisBC stated there is a plan to work with customers on an individual ‘one-on-one’ basis. The electricity and natural gas provider encourages customers who may be facing trouble paying their bills due to COVID-19 to contact their customer contact centre to set up a billing arrangement or to defer payments for the time being.

The company has taken this approach to support those who are in need, while simultaneously trying to avoid making decisions that could raise rates for all customers in the future.

“It’s important for us to always be very cautious when making choices that could have longer-term rate impacts for all our customers. Programs that provide direct credit to customers’ bills typically have a rate impact to all customers down the line – they are paid for through future rates that everyone pays,” stated a FortisBC release.

FortisBC says they are looking at all possible options at this time and plan on learning more about the program that BC Hydro is offering.

READ MORE: COVID-19: City of Penticton postpones utility suspensions

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