Financial assistance

Late on utility or rent bills? Meeting to obtain financial aid scheduled for Wednesday


With many residents struggling with past due utility bills and rents in the financial wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, San Diego Gas & Electric, the San Diego Housing Commission and the Imperial Counties Labor Council and its member unions organize a meeting wednesday to help San Diego families apply for financial assistance programs.

The meeting will be held from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday at the Logan Heights Library at 567 S. 28th St.

San Diego Late On Rent Payments Could Qualify For City Of San Diego COVID-19 Housing Stability Assistance Program, administered by the Housing Commission. The program can help pay rents and overdue utility bills and, in some cases, can be applied to overdue expenses for Internet services.

Any financial assistance is not considered household income, according to the US Department of the Treasury, and the program does not ask questions about immigration status.

Representatives from SDG & E will also be on hand to register for the California Alternate Rates for Energy, or CARE,
program and Arrears Management Payment Plan, or AMP.

CARE is available to customers whose total household income is at or below specific income limits, such as $ 52,400 for a family of four, and can reduce utility bills by 30-35%. AMP is a payment plan that reduces a portion of a participant’s debt and can write off up to $ 8,000 in utility bills if 12 on-time payments are made on current monthly bills.

Walk-ins are welcome to the Wednesday session and participants are encouraged to bring:

  • rental documents, such as a lease
  • late rent notice
  • current utility / household bills
  • gross annual household income for the calendar year 2020, and
  • current household income

Unpaid utility bills have piled up all over California during the pandemic. In the first quarter of this year, more than 3.3 million residential customers in the state’s four major utilities fell behind on their bills, including more than 485,000 customers in the SDG & E service territory.

Earlier this year, the California Public Utilities Commission extended the moratorium on cutting power to customers for non-payment, but the extension expires at the end of this month.

As for the tenants, approximately 724,000 Californian households are late in paying their rent. California tenant eviction protections, also extended earlier this year, expire after September 30.


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