• 45°

Suffolk utility help available

Suffolk utility customers may be able to get help on their water and sewer bills soon.

The Suffolk Department of Public Utilities on Monday announced a second HRUBS Utility Bill Pandemic Relief Program. This program provides $1,378,452.19 in financial assistance to qualifying Suffolk residential and non-residential customers who are experiencing financial hardship due to employment impacts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The program is supported by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act and allows the Suffolk Department of Public Utilities to provide this assistance through a statewide Municipal Utility Relief Fund.

Residential and non-residential customers with delinquent water and wastewater utility bill charges from March 1, 2020 to December 30, 2020 are encouraged to apply for assistance through this program. The city will provide assistance to qualifying residents and businesses with COVID-related past due balances until Jan. 22, 2021, or until the funding runs out.

The period that assistance can be provided is very short, and residents are urged to act quickly.

To qualify, applicants must self-certify they have experienced COVID-related issues that have caused economic hardship, such as job layoffs; job loss due to employment closings; reduction in work hours; staying home to care for children due to day care and school closings; or lost child or spousal support. Relief also covers those who have been unable to work or missed work due to contracting COVID-19; unable to find work due to COVID-19; or unable to participate in their previous employment due to a high risk of severe illness.

Applicants can verbally apply by phone by answering some brief questions or they can submit a short online application. To obtain an online application, download the form via this link, https://www.suffolkva.us/1471/COVID-19-Utility-Relief, or call 757-514-7450 to apply by phone.