LIHEAP action month presents opportunity to highlight issues, efforts
Across Texas, the Southern United States and in Washington, D.C., TXU Energy’s Kim Campbell works year-round to ensure that low-income consumers have access to financial help to keep their homes powered and safe.
Campbell, the company’s senior manager for customer advocacy, said her work is all part of TXU Energy’s commitment to the communities it serves.
“TXU Energy is a state and national leader in efforts to help families pay for their electricity and other home energy because safe housing, energy to preserve and cook food and comfort all are part of a family’s ability to recover from financial crisis,” Campbell says.
August is LIHEAP Action Month, a time for companies in the electricity, natural gas and home heating industries – as well as consumer advocates – to raise awareness and support for the federal Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program.
For the current budget year, Texas received $115 million from the federal government for low-income home energy assistance. Selected local government and social service agencies get that money through Texas’ Comprehensive Energy Assistance Program and use it to pay electricity and other home energy bills for qualified Texans based on family size and household income.
Federal officials are weighing how much money to put into the program for the next budget year. TXU Energy is working with state and federal leaders to highlight the needs and to ensure a fair distribution of the federal funds.
In addition to meeting with leaders such as U.S. Rep. Kay Granger, R-Fort Worth, Campbell speaks across the state to make sure customers know about available resources, participates with other industry leaders on state and regional LIHEAP advocacy teams and keeps close contact with the community-based TXU Energy Low-Income Advisory Committee.
Campbell also manages the company’s energy assistance group, which provides on-site support to Texas’ largest LIHEAP agency and works with more than 1,000 government and social service agencies to assist TXU Energy customers.
Privately, TXU Energy has the largest bill-payment assistance program among all competitive retail electricity companies in the United States. Unlike federal, state and other private programs, TXU Energy AidSM is available to any customer in financial crisis, regardless of past income.
TXU Energy says people can help Texans in need by checking the box on their paper bills or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Consumers who cannot pay their full electricity bill by the due date should contact their providers before the due date or call 2-1-1 to be connected with a local social service agency that can help.