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NJBPU, NJDCA encourage utility customers to resolve overdue gas and electric bills before Winter Termination Program ends March 15

NEW JERSEY — The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) and New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (NJDCA) are encouraging residents to bring their utility bills up to date before the Winter Termination Program (WTP) ends on March 15.

The WTP is an annual program that prevents utility shutoff for eligible customers during the cold winter months. Additionally, utility assistance programs and utility payment plans are available to help customers remain current on their bill payments or pay down overdue balances.

“The NJBPU and NJDCA can help New Jerseyans avoid having their electric, gas, water or sewer service shut off after the winter season ends,” said NJBPU President Joseph L. Fiordaliso. “Customers who cannot pay their bills in full need to enroll in utility assistance programs before March 15th, or they could face service disruptions.”

“WTP covers water and sewer bills along with electric and gas utility bills through March 15th, but applying for assistance programs takes time, so I encourage everyone to apply for help now so they don’t receive a shut off notice or experience disconnection after March 15,” Fiordaliso said.

Anyone needing help with their utility bills, should call 2-1-1 or go to for information about how to apply for the available programs, or contact your utility to set up a payment plan.

“We cannot stress enough the importance of applying for utility assistance before the March 15 deadline,” said Lt. Governor Sheila Y. Oliver, who also serves as the Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs. “The State is here to assist residents with paying past due bills. The process is easy and only takes a few minutes to see if you are eligible.”

The NJDCA has also implemented a Winter Termination Program for customers of local and municipal utility authorities. Customers in the WTP program should pay what they can each month to avoid a large overdue balance at the end of WTP. For more information about WTP call NJBPU at: 1-800-624-0241.

Households can visit the DCAid portal at to submit one online application for the Low-Income Household Water Assistance Program (LIHWAP), the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and the Universal Service Fund (USF) program.

If you do not have access to computers or the internet, you can call 1-800-510-3102 to be directed to one of the community action agencies partnering with NJDCA to assist them with starting, completing, and submitting an application online. A list of the community organizations providing such assistance is available at

LIHEAP provides annual heating grants, emergency grants to prevent service disconnection and medically necessary cooling grants. LIHEAP applications are reviewed on a rolling basis and assistance is awarded on a first-come, first-served basis so applicants should not wait to apply. The LIHEAP application deadline is June 30, 2023.

NJDCA also administers the LIHWAP program, which provides financial assistance to low-income households to reduce the balances they have on their residential water and wastewater bills. The benefits are paid directly to water and wastewater companies on behalf of residential customers. The LIHWAP program is actively accepting applications until funds run out.  Participants in the LIHEAP program are automatically eligible for LIHWAP assistance as long as they are water/wastewater bill holders.

You need to contact your utility to request the protection of the WTP. Customers who are eligible for Winter Termination Program protection include:

  1. Recipients of benefits under the Lifeline Credit Program;
  2. Recipients of benefits LIHEAP program;
  3. Recipients of Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF);
  4. Recipients of Federal Supplemental Security Income (SSI);
  5. Recipients of Pharmaceutical Assistance to the Aged and Disabled (PAAD);
  6. Recipients of General Assistance (GA) benefits;
  7. Recipients of the Universal Service Fund (USF); or
  8. Persons unable to pay their utility bills because of circumstances beyond their control. Such circumstances include, but are not limited to, unemployment, illness, medically related expenses, recent death of an immediate family member, and any other circumstances that might cause financial hardship.

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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