August 20 – Important Update
TVEC’s plans regarding the resumption of disconnection of electric service have changed. While not required to do so, TVEC has been voluntarily following the Public Utility Commission of Texas guidelines on disconnection for non-payment of electric service in response to COVID-19. Due to a recent change in the PUCT guidelines, TVEC now plans to resume normal billing and disconnection activities in October, not the September timeframe originally specified.
Original Post – Updated to reflect October start of normal billing
Trinity Valley Electric Cooperative will resume normal billing activity, including disconnecting non-paying accounts in October. Members who may be at risk of disconnection are encouraged to contact TVEC member services as soon as possible to determine what options may be best for each individual situation.
TVEC stopped disconnecting for non-payment in March as a way of helping members deal with the economic effects of government-mandated business closures and pandemic related job losses.
“We have a great deal of empathy for those who are suffering financial hardships during this crisis,” said TVEC General Manager/CEO Jeff Lane. “The last thing we want to do is disconnect anyone’s power. Unfortunately, the rate of nonpayment is not sustainable over a long period of time. As a member owned not-for-profit cooperative, we have to strike a balance between keeping rates as low as possible for all members, investing in infrastructure for reliability and growth, and making sure that the co-op is on solid financial ground for whatever the future may hold.”
Any TVEC members who are behind on their electricity bills are urged to contact TVEC as soon as possible for information regarding assistance organizations or bill payment options in order to maintain uninterrupted service by calling 800-766-9576 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for TVEC member services.
“There are some great charitable organizations in our area that assist TVEC members, and we are grateful for their work,” Lane said. “Since March, the TVEC Charitable Foundation has issued $36,250* in grants directly to these organizations specifically for TVEC member bill payment assistance. Thanks to the many TVEC members who donate through our Operation Round Up™ program each month for making this possible.”
Additionally, the Greater East Texas Community Action Program (GET-CAP) recently received $5 million in federal funding to assist area residents with utility payments. Visit www.get-cap.org for more information. A full list of bill payment assistance organizations is also available online at tvec.net/bill-payment-assistance.
*Updated August 25
While we will resume power disconnection for past-due accounts in September, we want TVEC members to know that we will never contact them demanding immediate payment.
Scammers may demand immediate payment or request personal identifying information. They may also request odd forms of payment like store-bought money cards, and they may request that people call them back at a specific mobile phone number.
If you receive any calls threatening disconnection and demanding payment over the phone, or any other suspicious requests, please hang up and contact our member services department directly.