COVID-19 Vermont Electric and Natural Gas Response

Updates to COVID-19 State of Emergency and PUC actions:

On July 30, 2020, the Public Utility Commission issued an order to extend the temporary moratorium of involuntary utility disconnections through September 30, 2020.

On July 22, 2020, the Department of Public Service — stating that the "Temporary Moratorium has provided an important health and safety protection during this period of uncertainty, which will continue to exist after July 31" — filed a motion with the PUC to extend the temporary moratorium through September 30, 2020. The PUC issued an order the same day requesting comments on the motion; comments are due by July 27, 2020.

On July 15, 2020, Governor Scott signed an exencutive order again extending the State of Emergency in Vemont to August 15, 2020. 

On June 15, 2020, Governor Scott signed an executive order to update and extend the State of Emergency in Vermont to July 15, 2020.

On May 28, 2020, the PUC issued an order extending the temporary moratorium on involuntary utility service disconnections through July 31, 2020. In the same order the PUC directed the utilities to file post-moratorium plans to address customer delinquencies that have or will have accrued before, during and after the moratorium period. 

On May 15, 2020, Governor Scott signed an order extending the State of Emergency to June 15, 2020.  On the same day the Vermont Public Utility Commission issued an order requesting comments on another potential extension of the temporary moratorium on involuntary utiity service disconnections, through July 31, 2020. 

On April 20, 2020, the Department of Public Service filed comments with the PUC supporting the temporary moratorium from April 30, 2020 through May 31, 2020, stating, “It remains essential in these unprecedented and uncertain times that vulnerable Vermonters continue to have access to essential utility services.  The Department further notes and commends the many utilities that have voluntarily extended the temporary moratorium on involuntary utility disconnections until May 31, 2020.”

On April 16, 2020, the Vermont Public Utility Commission issued an order requesting comments on potentially extending the temporary moratorium on involuntary utility service disconnections through May 31, 2020. 

On April 10, 2020, Governor Phil Scott extended Vermont's State of Emergency through May 15, 2020, which also extends the expiration date of all corresponding orders and directives issued by the governor in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

On March 27, 2020, the Public Utility Commission extended the moratorium to include non-residential ratepayers and regulated water companies. 

On March 20, 2020, the Department filed comments with the PUC suggesting, among other things, that there be further process to review whether the disconnection protection should be extended to businesses as well, which the Department supports. The Department also flagged the need, in due course, for regulators to address (1) whether to extend the moratorium beyond April 30, (2) how to reasonably and equitably deal with arrearages that many ratepayers are likely to accrue, and (3) how  to find a reasonable and equitable approach to ensuring the economic health of the utilities – particularly the small municipal utilities – should ratepayer arrearages become widespread and material in value.

On March 18, 2020, the Public Utility Commission ordered a temporary moratorium on involuntary disconnections of natural gas, electric and telecommunications service until April 30, 2020. This order formally acknowledges the work previously done by Vermont’s utilities to voluntarily suspend disconnections in response to the COVID-19 emergency and their coordination with the Vermont Department of Public Service.  

The utilities and the Department will continue working together to ensure the uninterrupted provision of safe, reliable delivery of utility service to Vermonters during the COVID -19 State of Emergency. Vermont’s utility personnel are working tirelessly to keep the lights on, homes heated, calls exchanged, and broadband running, all while doing line maintenance and repairs as needed.

Also, the utilities are continuously updating the Department about their measures to help contain the COVID-19 virus and to ensure their employees remain able to provide essential services to the public.

  • Department of Public Service contact for utilities regarding continuous operations:

Bill Jordan, Director of Engineering Division 
1-802-828-4038
bill.jordan@vermont.gov

Electric
Natural Gas
  •  Vermont Gas COVID-19 Customer Information
    VGS has suspended all collections-related activities and service disconnections for all retail customers, to lessen the pandemic’s financial hardship, through May 31 or the duration of the State of Emergency if it continues beyond that date.
Internet, Telephone and Mobile Wireless