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Oklahoma utility policy works to keep customers from being left in the cold

The Oklahoma Corporation Commission has a policy that allows Oklahomans to keep their heat on in cold weather, even if they are past due on their bills.
by Adam Kemp Published: December 28, 2012
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Oklahomans worried about their heat being cut off in the cold because of a past-due bill can rest warm and easy.

Oklahoma Natural Gas Co. and Oklahoma Gas and Electric Co. both follow an Oklahoma Corporation Commission policy that says service will not be disconnected if the temperature is or is predicted to be 32 degrees or lower.

The policy also says that if the nighttime temperature is predicted to be 20 degrees or lower on the day of a scheduled disconnect, then the heat must stay on.

ONG spokeswoman Cherokee Ballard said gas company officials encourage customers to call if they are having trouble paying their bill.

“We absolutely work with customers, and if they want to call and say they need a little more time to pay their bill, we will try and work with them,” Ballard said. “We want to work with our customers as much as possible.”

ONG's Share the Warmth program and OG&E's Lend a Hand program are options for customers to help keep their heat on in the frigid temperatures.

Both programs are administered through the Salvation Army to help people 62 or older, individuals with disabilities and people struggling to make a payment.

The programs are funded through donations. ONG and OG&E customers who wish to donate can specify an amount on their monthly bill.

by Adam Kemp
Enterprise Reporter
Adam Kemp is an enterprise reporter and videographer for the Oklahoman and Newsok.com. Kemp grew up in Oklahoma City before attending Oklahoma State University. Kemp has interned for the Oklahoman, the Oklahoma Gazette and covered Oklahoma State...
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