Even as most members of this great community are banding together to face the CV-19 invasion, a small group is choosing to be disruptive rather than supportive by posting venom without facts. GL&PS is not the only target of this group; please verify the facts of the matter before you make our own judgment about any target they choose to malign.
Over the past couple of days there have been small social media uproars over situations involving GL&PS. In one, a poster made the inaccurate claim that GL&PS rates were the highest in the land and that any data showing otherwise is corrupted. No source was cited. The level of electric rates is important to everyone in Greene County. Check for yourself; any review of electric rates across Tennessee, the Southeast, or the entire US will show that the rates you pay are reasonable.
The other stir concerns GL&PS collection practices. Especially during times like these, it’s important for all to understand why we do what we do. Although it’s a wonderful thought, as a public, nonprofit entity, GL&PS cannot supply free electricity, nor can we forgive anyone’s debt. Most Customers receive a monthly bill for power already used. Several days after the due date, if the delinquent Customer has not contacted us to make payment arrangement, disconnection is the only option available to stop the loss of revenue. Limiting that loss is important because GL&PS has already paid TVA for the power used by that Customer. If they never pay, that financial burden is shared by those Customers who responsibly pay what they owe.
Some Customers decline standard service and opt for the flexibility offered by our Prepay program. Prepay Customers need not post a deposit; that leaves money in their pockets. After the account is set up, all they need do to maintain electric service is to keep a positive account balance. They do that by paying any amount they wish to pay when they want to pay it, as long as they keep the account balance above zero. This is similar to how everyone manages the amount of gasoline in our cars. We buy the amount of fuel we want when we want to, but if we don’t watch the fuel gauge and let the tank go dry, the car stops.
At sign up, each participant can choose an account notification level. When their account balance drops to that level, they automatically receive a reminder that a payment may soon be needed. Prepay Customers can also check account balances at any time, so there should be no surprises about their account balances. There is one more alert to help them avoid disconnection; at 3 PM each day, Prepay accounts with negative balances are notified that payment must be made before 9 AM the next day, or service will be disconnected. If no payment is made, that occurs. A payment via any method automatically restores service within a few minutes.
Whether they choose a standard account or a Prepay account, every Customer is required to pay for the power they consume. That’s not always easy, in fact it can be extremely hard. Our team of Customer Service Representatives have a great deal of experience helping Customers get through all sorts of difficult times, but we can’t know who is struggling unless they contact us. As noted, as a public entity we cannot forgive anyone’s debts, but for years we have been offering extended payment arrangements to Customers on a case by case basis.
During the stressful economic conditions we are entering, we are prepared to offer even more flexible payment options for those who are adversely affected by CV-19 invasion. Remember, we can’t do anything to help unless you call us and help us understand your situation. When that happens, we will continue doing our best to assist you.