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July 08, 2020

Philadelphia Water Department freezes shutoffs for two more months

Assistance program available for people with overdue bills

Utilities Water
water department shutoff moratorium Thom Carroll/for PhillyVoice

The Philadelphia Water Department has extended its moratorium on service shutoffs through Aug. 31 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Philadelphia residents struggling to pay their water bills will not face service terminations until September. 

The Philadelphia Water Department and Water Revenue Bureau are extending their moratorium on water shutoffs through Aug. 31 to help residents facing financial hardships caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Customers will still be issued bills for past-due balances. Water Department Commissioner Randy E. Hayman emphasized the need for people with available income to continue to pay their water bill.

"If you can pay, please do so," Hayman said Tuesday. "Water bills are our only way to fund critical investments that ensure Philadelphia has safe, clean water."

The department's Tiered Assistance Program offers discounted rates to qualifying customers. Participants also can have their unpaid bills removed from the collections process. 

Among those that qualify: People with low incomes, seniors and customers experiencing a "special hardship," like a job loss, serious illness, household growth, domestic violence or the loss of the household's primary income earner. 

"If you can't pay a water bill because of the pandemic, please get in touch to see how we can help," Hayman said.

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