Wisconsin Public Service Will Start Disconnecting Those Who Don't Pay Submitted: 04/09/2012
RHINELANDER - If you've been late on your utility bills, Wisconsin Public Service is getting ready to shut off your service.

Statewide, more than 24,000 W-P-S customers are four months or more behind on their utility bills.

The company doesn't shut service off from October until April because of cold weather but the so-called winter moratorium ends April 15.

Leah Van Zile with Wisconsin Public Service says there are about 10,000 customers here in the Northwoods behind on their bill and more than 2,400 of those could be shut off.

"When we look at disconnecting a customer we look at not only how far back haven't they paid or how long have they been delinquint on their bill but also the dollar amount makes a big difference as well," Van Zile says.

Customers will face late charges, disconnection fees, and also the potential to pay a security deposit to get service back.

But the provider tries to work with people on a case-by-case basis.

"We really do look at each customer individually and what they're circumstances are," Van Zile. "Does that customer qualify for energy assistance programs offered either at the county level or the state level? What kind of payment plan are we able to put them on."

Van Zile says there are a lot of options for customers who haven't paid but time is running out and you need to contact W-P-S as soon as possible.

She says there's still low-income heating assistance available for W-P-S customers.

You can contact your local social services agency for more information.

Story By: Matt Doyle

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