Over 55,000 NES accounts 120+ days overdue

No disconnections through September
Posted at 4:11 PM, Aug 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-30 23:33:15-04

DAVIDSON CO., Tenn. (WTVF) — More than 55,000 Middle Tennessee accounts have utility bills over 120 days overdue, according to Nashville Electric Service.

NES President and CEO Decosta Jenkins says that's about triple the normal number and represents about 22 million dollars. In comparison, past-due balances in February equaled about 7 million dollars.

Jenkins says they believe these delayed payments are because of the financial strain of the pandemic.

"We've never had a situation like this where we've had this many people either without jobs or can't go to work because their jobs are not essential services."

As a result, NES stopped disconnections or charging late fees back in March. He says they will continue this measure until September 30.

"Once we resume, those people who have large bills we're going to spread those payments out over 12 months to give hem 12 months to pay it."

Jenkins also said they will work to connect customers struggling with payments with agencies that can provide assistance. They've partnered with the TVA in making contributions to its community care fund, which provides pandemic relief funding to local non-profits supporrting communities.

"These are challenging times-- unprecedented is the word I think is often used, and I don't think it can be used too often given where we are, so it called for unprecedented measures."

Resources for financial assistance include Project Help and the Metro Action Commission. Jenkins encourages those who are financially stable to donate to Project Help.

He recommends customers try to reduce their electricity consumption to save money on bills.