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Extra energy bill relief to counter COVID-19 pandemic


Picture: Electricity & Gas Comparison

Locals struggling to pay their energy bills during the COVID-19 pandemic can now access additional financial support following a $30 million boost. NORTHERN Tablelands MP Adam Marshall said residential energy customers could now apply for Energy Accounts Payment Assistance vouchers directly through Service NSW and would be called for an eligibility assessment without having to leave their house. “As we head into another Northern Tableland’s winter it's important those who are struggling financially due to COVID-19 restrictions are able to pay their power bills and keep their heating on at home,” he said. “I encourage people that need bill support during this tough time to head to the Service NSW website and register for an energy voucher assessment. “The EAPA assessment threshold has been temporarily increased so people can receive up to $400 per assessment twice per year, compared to the normal amount of $300." The annual maximum limit of vouchers for a household with both electricity and gas has increased from $1,200 to $1,600, up by $400. During the assessment for EAPA vouchers, government representatives will also contact energy retailers with customers to assist with getting customers onto hardship plans, which will further protect customers during this extraordinarily difficult time. People needing further information should visit www.service.nsw.gov.au and search EAPA or drop into their local Service NSW Centre. At the same time, Commonwealth Seniors Health Card holders across NSW are being reminded to apply for the Seniors Energy Rebate. The SER provides a $200 rebate to eligible NSW electricity customers and can be claimed each financial year.