ST. LOUIS (Oct. 21, 2020) – Because of the ongoing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ameren Missouri is providing an additional $500,000 in energy assistance to customers across the state. The funding is on top of $4 million previously pledged this year.
This $500,000 donation makes energy assistance available for more Missouri families by expanding income eligibility requirements. Moderate-income families who need energy assistance for the first time, but don't qualify for Missouri's Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), may be eligible for these new Clean Slate funds.
"We know there are many families struggling with their expenses who don't qualify for existing programs, but have been deeply impacted by the pandemic," said Marty Lyons, chairman and president of Ameren Missouri. "We want those families to know we are here to help in this critical time of need. This new round of Clean Slate will support even more customers as we head into the colder winter months."
"From the start of this pandemic, we have worked closely with the Missouri Office of the Public Counsel to find ways to best serve our customers and help them through this crisis," said Tara Oglesby, vice president of customer experience for Ameren Missouri. "These expanded eligibility requirements will provide additional relief for Missouri families dealing with reduced wages, job loss and other financial hardships."
Clean Slate will help eligible customers clear the remaining balance on their account after they pay 25% of the past-due balance. Up to $500 in Clean Slate funds will be applied to the remaining account balance. Any leftover balance will be entered into a payment agreement.
To be eligible for Clean Slate, customers must meet the following requirements:
Ameren Missouri's previous $3 million COVID-19 Clean Slate program helped thousands of Ameren Missouri customers pay off their past-due utility bills. Community partners and agencies administered the Clean Slate program and will also distribute this additional round of energy assistance dollars. Customers who have previously received Clean Slate funding are not eligible to apply.
Funding from this new $500,000 donation will be available starting today (Oct. 21) for eligible Missouri electric customers. Customers are encouraged to apply as soon as possible to see if they are eligible and before their outstanding balance becomes overwhelming.
Customers can find more information about Clean Slate at AmerenMissouri.com/CleanSlate or by calling Ameren Missouri at 800-552-7583.
Energy assistance dollars are also available for customers with an income at or below 135% of the federal poverty level through the Missouri Family Support Division's LIHEAP program. The state recently extended the deadline for LIHEAP's Summer Cooling Program to October 31, 2020, increased the maximum benefit from $300 to $600 and temporarily expanded the eligibility requirements from a maximum of 135% to 150% of the federal poverty level.
How to apply for LIHEAP:
Ameren Missouri has been providing electric and gas service for more than 100 years, and the company's electric rates are among the lowest in the nation. Ameren Missouri's mission is to power the quality of life for its 1.2 million electric and 132,000 natural gas customers in central and eastern Missouri. The company's service area covers 64 counties and more than 500 communities, including the greater St. Louis area. For more information, visit Ameren.com/Missouri or follow us on Twitter at @AmerenMissouri or Facebook.com/AmerenMissouri.