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Virginia Natural Gas Urges Customers to Prepare for Winter Heating Season, Take Advantage of Special Programs to Manage Heating Costs and Conserve Energy
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – Oct. 9, 2017 – October is the traditional start of the winter heating season when residents are encouraged to take all the necessary steps to prepare for the colder months ahead. Keeping themselves and their families warm is not as simple as turning a knob or pressing buttons on a thermostat, however. When temperatures drop, some household budgets cannot keep up with the demands of using more natural gas to heat their homes.
Virginia Natural Gas wants to help customers better prepare for winter heating season by providing the following tools, services, and solutions that can give customers peace of mind when managing winter heating bills:
- Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) helps eligible customers meet their energy needs by helping to pay their winter heating bills. General enrollment for the program begins Oct. 10 for all qualified customers, including senior citizens and persons with disabilities, and ends on Nov. 10. Households receiving LIHEAP assistance have incomes below 130 percent of the federal poverty level, which is approximately $31,590 annual income for a family of four. For more information about LIHEAP or to locate an application agency in their area, residents can dial 2-1-1.
- EnergyShare is a supplemental program made up of voluntary contributions from Virginia Natural Gas customers. The program, which is administered by the Salvation Army, provides a one-time annual grant to help cover Virginia Natural Gas costs. To apply, customers can call their local Salvation Army office to schedule an appointment.
The following resources also are available to help manage heating costs:
- The Virginia Natural Gas Budget Plan is a bill management program that provides a convenient way for customers to pay their natural gas bills, making household budgeting much easier. The plan minimizes the "peaks and valleys" in natural gas bills by allowing customers to pay a consistent amount every month for a 12-month period. Customers interested in enrolling in the budget plan should visit www.virginianaturalgas.com or call the Customer Care Center at 1-866-229-3578.
- The energySMART program offers ideas and tools to help customers save energy and money. The program provides the education, resources and financial rebates to make homes and businesses more energy efficient. Virginia Natural Gas customers can complete a free online energy audit that provides a comprehensive report with personalized recommendations for saving energy in their home. Upon completion, customers receive a free energy-savings kit that includes items to help them save energy and money.
For additional information about each of these programs and more information about managing natural gas costs, please visit www.virginianaturalgas.com and follow us on Facebook and Twitter @VaNaturalGas.
About Virginia Natural Gas
Virginia Natural Gas is one of seven natural gas distribution companies of Southern Company Gas, a wholly owned subsidiary of Southern Company (NYSE: SO). Virginia Natural Gas provides natural gas service to 293,000 customers in southeast Virginia. Virginia Natural Gas has been recognized as one of the safest, most reliable and customer-focused natural gas service providers, and in 2016 was ranked second in customer satisfaction among mid-size utilities in the South and third nationally by J.D. Power. Also in 2016, Virginia Natural Gas was recognized as an Environmental Champion by Cogent™ Reports and as the Local Distribution Company of the Year by the Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy and the Virginia Oil and Gas Association. For more information, visit www.virginianaturalgas.com and connect with the company on Facebook (Facebook.com/VaNaturalGasCo) and Twitter (Twitter.com/VaNaturalGas).
About Southern Company Gas
Southern Company Gas is a wholly owned subsidiary of Atlanta-based Southern Company (NYSE:SO), America’s premier energy company. Southern Company Gas serves approximately 4.6 million natural gas utility customers through its regulated distribution companies in seven states and more than 1 million retail customers through its companies that market natural gas and related home services. Other nonutility businesses include investments in interstate pipelines, asset management for natural gas wholesale customers and ownership and operation of natural gas storage facilities. For more information, visit Southern Company Gas at www.southerncompanygas.com.
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