Omaha Public Power District and Metropolitan Utilities District customers in Douglas County, struggling to pay their bills due to COVID-19 impacts, are getting a needed financial boost.
Tuesday, the Douglas County Board of Commissioners voted to allocate $4 million in funding from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act for utility assistance. This allocation is allowed per U.S. Treasury guidance.
Representatives from OPPD and M.U.D. attended the meeting to provide information and support for the funding ahead of the vote.
“This is wonderful news for our customers who are struggling due to unexpected circumstances brought about by coronavirus,” said Juli Comstock, OPPD vice president of Customer Service. “We want to work with those who have been impacted to connect them with resources that can help. This funding will go a long way towards those efforts.”
Stephanie Mueller, M.U.D. vice president of Corporate Communications and Customer Success, said, “We are grateful to the Douglas County Board for its decision to allot CARES Act funds to help customers impacted by COVID-19. Our goal is to help as many customers as possible and get dollars out into the community as quickly as possible.”
While specifics are still being worked out, funding will be distributed through a number of local agencies. The utilities will reach out to customers who are behind on their bills to share details. Visit oppd.com/eap for more information on energy assistance for electricity service or mudomaha.com/homefund for assistance with gas and water services.
OPPD and M.U.D. will work with the Douglas County Board, staff, and their CARES Act funding contractor (Deloitte) to ensure customers who need assistance due to COVID-19 impacts receive help as soon as possible.