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Yankee Gas Services Company
P.O. Box 270
Hartford, CT 06141-0270
(800) 989-0900

www.yankeegas.com
News Release
  
CL&P and Yankee Gas Offer Payment Programs and Winter Shut-off Protection  
MEDIA CONTACT:CL&P, Mary IngarraYankee Gs, Jeff Tilghman
Office:(860) 665-6212(860) 665-3931
 
BERLIN, Connecticut – October 24, 2005 – The Connecticut Light and Power Company (CL&P) and Yankee Gas Services Company are offering programs to assist customers who experience difficulty paying their electric and natural gas bills this winter, or who want to spread their energy costs over a year.

Equal/Budget Payment Plans

CL&P offers an Equal Payment Plan that lets customers pay the same amount each month. Based on energy usage history, an average monthly bill is calculated and customers receive 11 equal monthly bills. In the twelfth month, customers are billed the regular Equal Payment -- plus any balance due, or less any credit owed, based on actual usage.

For Yankee Gas customers whose account payments are current, there is a Budget Payment Program that allows customers to spread out payments over an 11-month period. This helps them avoid higher bills during the winter heating months. Yankee Gas reviews the account monthly and reconciles it each May. A balance owed or a credit to the account is rolled into the next year.


Weatherization Program and Third Party Programs

Both utilities have WRAP (Weatherization Residential Assistance Partnership) programs to assist eligible financially challenged customers by making their homes more energy-efficient, while promoting energy conservation; and Third Party Notification programs that make someone else aware when a customer falls behind in his or her payments, with ample time to take action so that service will not be disconnected. The third party is not obligated to pay the bill and notification does not necessarily prevent loss of service, but simply makes another person aware of possible termination of service.

For information about the Equal/Budget Payment Programs, WRAP and Third Party Notification, call CL&P at 1-800-286-2000 (860-947-2000 in the Hartford and Meriden calling areas), or Yankee Gas Customer Service at 1-800-989-0900.


Winter Protection Programs
CL&P and Yankee Gas offer Winter Protection Programs that protect hardship customers from electric service shut-offs or natural gas heating service shut-offs for non-payment from November 1 to April 15, 2006. To qualify, customers must meet federal income guidelines. CL&P customers and Yankee Gas non-heating customers, such as those with a serious medical condition within their household, or those who receive a major source of financial support from Social Security or veteran’s benefits, may also be eligible for Winter Protection. Certain customers who depend on unemployment compensation benefits may also qualify.

Last year more than 30,000 CL&P customers and more than 16,500 Yankee Gas customers signed up to receive Winter Protection Plan services. Customers can apply and qualify for energy assistance through their local Community Action Agency, which can be located by calling INFO-LINE at 211.


Matching Payment Programs

CL&P’s Matching Payment Program provides year-round electric service and possible forgiveness of past-due balances for low-income customers who heat their homes with electricity. The company matches every dollar paid on the customer’s behalf, up to a zero balance. During last year’s heating season, approximately 2,000 customers enrolled in the program and more than $330,000 was forgiven for customers.

Yankee Gas’ Matching Payment Program allows low-income customers who have past-due balances to work out a monthly payment arrangement so their gas heating service will be provided all year round. If customers qualify, there is a possibility of forgiveness of back balances owed. Customers must apply and qualify for energy assistance funds payable to Yankee Gas and make and keep monthly payments. For those who are eligible, Yankee Gas will deduct an amount equal to the money paid by the customer and the amount received from energy assistance applied to his or her Yankee Gas account, up to a zero balance.


CL&P’s NUSTART Program

The NUSTART Program helps low-income CL&P customers maintain year-round electric service. Customers can reduce and eliminate past-due balances while earning monthly arrearage credit. To qualify, customers must have income levels at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level, have a past-due balance of $100 or more on a CL&P bill that is 60 or more days overdue and agree to pay a monthly budget amount.


For More Information

CL&P customers who want more information about the Matching Payment, Winter Protection and NUSTART Programs are encouraged to call 1-800-286-2000 (860-947-2000 in the Hartford and Meriden calling areas) or visit www.cl-p.com.

For more information on how to sign up for Yankee’s Matching Payment Program and Winter Protection Plan, call 1-800-438-2278, or visit www.yankeegas.com.

The Connecticut Light and Power Company (CL&P), Connecticut’s largest electric utility, provides safe and reliable electric service to nearly 1.2 million customers in 149 cities and towns across the state. With nearly 2,300 employees and annual revenues of approximately $2.9 billion, CL&P offers programs and services in energy conservation, economic development, environmental education, and community relations. CL&P is part of the Northeast Utilities System (NYSE: NU). For more information, please visit www.cl-p.com.

Yankee Gas Services Company (Yankee Gas) is Connecticut’s largest natural gas distribution company, delivering safe, reliable natural gas service to approximately 194,000 customers in 71 cities and towns. Yankee Gas is expanding Connecticut’s energy options and increasing customer choice by extending the availability of clean, efficient natural gas throughout the state. Yankee Gas is part of the Northeast Utilities System (NYSE: NU). For more information, please visit www.yankeegas.com.


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