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Service Practice Policies
 

Operating Policy No. 2-2

 

Subject:  Information to Customers

Policy:

Policies and General Information

General information and service practice policies will be available to all customers upon application for service or at any time the customer requests such information, and shall be posted on CES’s website.

Rates

Current rate schedule information will be available to all customers upon application for service or at any time the customer requests such information, and shall be posted on CES’s website.  All rate changes shall be posted on CES’s website.

 Billing History

Up to twelve (12) months of a customer's billing history will be furnished to him upon his request.  The request may be made in person, by mail or telephone.  There is no charge for this service.

 

 Operating Policy No. 2-3

 

Subject:  Billing       

Policy:

Bills will be issued monthly and shall be paid at the CES office or other locations designated by CES.  Failure to receive a bill will not release the customer from payment obligations.

Bills are due when issued for all classes of service.  The net period allowed for payment for all classes of service is fifteen (15) days from the date the customer is billed.  Remittance received by mail will be considered paid as of the postmark date placed on the envelope by the United States Postal Service.

Payments made after the due date are subject to an additional late payment charge.  The late payment charge shall be based upon five percent (5%) of the first $250.00, plus one percent (1%) for amounts greater than $250.00 (all excluding taxes), and shall be applied individually to each type of service billed for that account.

If requested by the customer, CES may waive one (1) late payment charge within a twelve (12) consecutive month period if the customer has not incurred a late payment charge within the previous twelve (12) consecutive months.

 If a bill remains unpaid twenty-one (21) days after the billing date, service shall be subject to termination due to non-payment.

 

Operating Policy No. 2-4

 

Subject:  Disconnection of Service

Policy:

CES may discontinue electrical service for the violation of any of the Schedule of Rules and Regulations or of the Schedule of Rates and Charges.  CES may also discontinue electrical service to the customer for the theft of services or the appearance of theft devices on the customer’s premise, for safety reasons or to be compliant with any city, state, county or federal regulations that require disconnection for safety reasons. 

Electrical service shall be discontinued to customers with past due accounts.  Payment in full (including all related service fees) will be required before service is restored.  An additional deposit amount may also be required.

The termination of service by CES for any reason stated in this policy does not release the customer from the obligation for any amounts due CES, including the payment of minimum bills as specified in contracts. 

Procedure for Disconnection of Service Due to Non-payment of Bill

On the work day next following the due date, CES will mail by U.S. Postal Service a notice to each customer that has not paid their electric bill in full by that due date.  The notice shall state that their bill has not been paid and will be disconnected for non-payment if not paid by the date shown on the notice, with said disconnection date no less than five (5) days following the initial due date.  The notice shall also inform the customer of the availability of a procedure for discussing any billing dispute with a CES representative prior to the disconnection date shown on the notice.

A service fee will automatically be added to all bills unpaid as of the date shown on the disconnection notice.  If service is disconnected due to non-payment of bill, service will not be reconnected until the total balance is paid in full, including applicable service fees.

CES will proceed on schedule with the disconnection of service due to non-payment of bill unless, prior to the disconnection date, the customer has notified CES of a dispute of his bill and the dispute has yet to be settled.

Restoration of Service Following Disconnection Due to Non-payment of Bill

For safety reasons, CES employees do not take or receive payments for electric bills in the field.  Customers whose service has been disconnected due to non-payment of bill must appear at CES’ office to present payment in full, plus applicable service fees, in order to have electrical service reconnected during normal business hours.  In order to accommodate reconnection of electrical service after normal business hours, the customer must sign an “AFTER-HOURS RECONNECTION FORM” wherein they agree to make payment of all past-due amounts in full, plus service fees, at CES’ office by 10:00 a.m. on the next busines day.

Delay of Service Disconnection due to Weather Extremes

During extremely hot temperatures, CES will postpone disconnection of service due to non-payment of bill if, by the time that CES has printed the final disconnection list, the National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory* for Tipton County for that day.    Disconnection of service due to non-payment of bill will resume as soon as the heat advisory has been cancelled.

During extremely cold temperatures, CES will postpone disconnection of service due to non-payment of bill if, by the time that CES has printed the final disconnection list, the current ambient temperature** is below 32°F and ambient temperature for that night is forecast to be less than 20°F.  Disconnection of service due to non-payment of bill will resume as soon as the current ambient temperature rises above 32°F and ambient temperatures for that night are forecast to be 20°F or greater.

*The National Weather Service normally issues a heat advisory within 12 hours of the forecasted onset of a heat index of at least 105°F or if nighttime lows are forecast to be above 80°F for 2 consecutive days. 

** Current ambient temperature and forecast temperatures will be taken from Memphis News Channel 3’s reporting station located at the Covington Crestview Middle School, as displayed in the top-right corner of CES’ website homepage, www.covingtones.com.

Delay of Service Disconnection Due to Medical Necessity

A medical necessity is defined as a condition wherein electrical power is required to operate life sustaining devises such as dialysis machines or life support equipment systems.  Upon CES’ receipt and approval of the “Medical Form For Certification Of Use Of Life-Sustaining Alternating Current Electrical Devices”, disconnection of electric service due to non-payment of bill will be postponed for three days from the original scheduled disconnection date to allow time for the customer to present payment in full or make alternate shelter arrangements.  The medical form must be completed by a medical doctor or nurse practitioner licensed to practice in the state of Tennessee certifying that the disconnection of electrical service would create a life-threatening medical condition for the customer or other permanent resident of the customer’s household.  It shall be the responsibility of the customer to ensure that the medical form has been completed by the medical doctor or nurse practitioner and returned to CES.  The medical form shall be updated/renewed by the medical doctor or nurse practitioner on an annual basis, following written notification from CES to the customer that such update or renewal is required.

A life-threatening medical condition does not relieve the customer of the obligation to pay for electrical service and related service fees.  Upon printing of the final disconnection list, CES will hand-deliver to any customer for whom CES has previously received a medical form and whose name appears on the disconnection list a notice that they must pay their past due electric bill and related service fees in full by the date shown on the letter.  If full payment of the past due amount, including related service fees, is not received by the time specified in the notice, electric service will be disconnected without further notice.  CES will only grant this postponement of service disconnection three times during any twelve-month consecutive period.

Waiver of Service Fees

Should a customer appear on the disconnection list, the service fee associated with the reconnection process will be waived if all of the following conditions are met:

1.     The bill is paid in full following disconnection of service, and

2.     The customer has never been on the disconnection list for the current or any previous account locations, and

3.     The customer has never offered a bad check to avoid/delay disconnection of service for non-payment of bill.

If a customer is terminated for non-payment and it is afterwards discovered that (a) the person in whose name the service is established has been hospitalized under emergency conditions just prior to termination of service, or (b) is recently deceased, then the service fee will be waived under the following conditions:

1.     CES must be able to verify the hospitalization or death, and

2.     The bill must be paid in full by 1:00 P.M. on the next regular workday following the termination day. 

Account Close-out Due to Termination of Service for Non-Payment of Bill

If service remains disconnected for 15 days due to non-payment of bill, the account will be considered as a final billing.  Any customer deposit and accrued interest will be applied to the final unpaid bill.  Once this has occurred, all past-due bills, related service fees and a new security deposit must be paid prior to reconnection of service.  Service reconnection will be handled as a new customer account.

 

Operating Policy No. 2-6

 

Subject:  Security Deposits

Policy: 

Security deposits, as described herin, must be paid in full before electrical service can be established.  The deposit may not be used by a customer as a means of routine bill payment.  Security deposits shall be maintained for the duration of electrical service.  Cash deposits, including accrued interest, shall be applied to a customer’s final bill following termination of service and account closeout, with any excess deposit remaining to be returned to the customer.

Following enactment of this policy, any customer who does not have an adequate security deposit in place and whose account appears on the service termination list twice in a twelve month period for failure to pay his balance in full shall, in conjunction with payment of all past-due amounts, provide the required security deposit.  Said required security deposit shall be provided within 20 days of notification or service shall be subject to termination.

 Interest Paid on Cash Deposits

Cash deposits that have been established for twelve months or longer shall accrue interest equivalent to the interest earned by CES’ general checking account.  Interest accrued on cash deposits will be applied as a credit on the customer’s bill at the close of each fiscal year. 

Residential Security Deposits

Residential security deposits shall be based upon approximately two times the class average monthly bill for all residential customers as calculated during the month in which the greatest amount of electrical energy was sold to residential customers during the previous twenty-four month period. 

All new residential customers shall provide a security deposit in the amount of $300.00 for electrical service which is based on two times the class average monthly bill.  CES will accept payment for security deposits by cash, check, money order or credit card. 

CES shall require an existing residential customer to increase his security deposit to the amount listed above if he transfers to a new service address and does not have an adequate deposit; opens a new account; or if he becomes a payment risk as described above.

General Power Security Deposits

All new general power customers shall provide a security deposit for electric service approximately equal to twice their highest monthly bill.  For existing facilities, determination of the highest monthly bill shall be based upon actual historical energy usage.  For new facilities, determination of the highest monthly bill shall be based upon electrical load information taken from the building plan panel board loading data or from comparison to similar existing buildings. 

 CES shall require an existing general power customer to provide a new security deposit or increase his existing security deposit to an amount approximately equal to twice his highest monthly bill if he transfers to a new service address and does not have an adequate deposit; adds additional load that increases his total energy consumption by 20% or more or requires CES to make additional investment in electric plant; opens a new account; or if he becomes a payment risk as described above.

            CES will accept any one of the following for security deposits:

1.     “Cash Deposit”.  Cash deposits will accrue interest as described herein.

2.     “Bank Irrevocable Letter of Credit”.  The Bank Irrevocable Letter of Credit shall be worded in a manner acceptable to CES.  It shall be the responsibility of the customer to see that the Bank Irrevocable Letter of Credit is renewed 60 days prior to its expiration.  Customer’s failure to effect said renewal may cause termination of service without notice until such time as an adequate security deposit is provided.

3.     “Surety Bond”.  Surety Bonds shall only be accepted on CES’s Surety Bond form.  It shall be the responsibility of the customer to see that the Surety Bond is renewed 60 days prior to its expiration.  Customer’s failure to effect said renewal may cause termination of service without notice until such time as an adequate security deposit is provided.

4.     “TVPPA Certified Insurance Program”.   Any qualifying customer whose total deposit requirements equal or exceed $25,000.00 may apply for acceptance into the TVPPA Certified Insurance Program.  If accepted into the program by the insurance underwriter, the underwriter will provide surety for 90% of the required deposit amount.  The customer shall provide the balance of the required deposit by one of the forms outlined above.  Should, at any time in the future, the insurance underwriter withdraw, deny or in any way revoke customer’s surety, or should the TVPPA Certified Insurance Program be terminated, customer shall, within 30 days of notification, provide the required security deposit in one of the forms outlined above.  Customer’s failure to provide the required replacement deposit may cause termination of service without notice until such time as an adequate security deposit is provided.

Review of Security Deposit Amounts and Accrued Interest on Deposits

The total amount of the deposit requirement, as well as any interest accrued on cash deposits, may be reviewed upon request by the customer or at CES’s discretion.

 

 

 


 

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