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Naperville
Friday, April 19, 2024

Nicor Gas supports customers during, after winter storms 

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Above / Nicor Gas welcomes customers to inquire about bill payment assistance grants and energy savings resources at the customer contact center. (Photo courtesy Nicor Gas)
 
Nicor Gas Report
 
During the three coldest days of winter storm Gerri, when wind chills dipped below -30°F, Nicor Gas employees worked around the clock to ensure there were no major service outages during the weather event. During this time, Nicor Gas delivered 12.41 billion cubic feet (Bcf) of natural gas to its 2.3 million customers in Northern Illinois. Approximately 40% of this natural gas was delivered from Nicor Gas’ underground storage. 

 

Wendell Dallas, president and CEO of Nicor Gas (Photo courtesy Nicor Gas)

“Natural gas remains the clean, safe, reliable and affordable energy choice for our customers in Illinois,” said Wendell Dallas, president and CEO of Nicor Gas. “Utilizing our storage facilities can help ensure the price of natural gas is less affected by market variability, since we procure it before the heating season and store it for later use.” 

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, heating homes using natural gas is estimated to cut down energy costs by more than 40% compared to electricity. The EIA also forecasts residential natural gas prices this winter will be about 21% lower than 2022.  

Bill Payment Assistance and Bill Management Options

To further assist customers when their personal energy use may be up, Nicor Gas offers bill payment assistance and bill management options, as well as energy efficiency tools to help lower their annual energy costs. Current available options to assist qualified customers, include: 

  • LIHEAP – The Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program is a federally funded bill payment assistance program that helps low- and fixed-income families meet their energy needs. For eligibility and to apply, visit www.LIHEAPIllinois.com or call 877-411-9276 (WARM). 
  • Shield of Caring – Nicor Gas residential customers can apply for a grant of up to $250 a year through the Shield of Caring program, administered by The Salvation Army. Shield of Caring is an emergency assistance and homelessness prevention program that provides natural gas bill payment assistance and support for other basic needs, including housing and rental assistance, grocery packages and warm winter clothing. Residential customers with a household gross income in the last 30 days below 400% of the Federal Poverty Level can apply at www.shieldofcaring.com
  • Sharing Program – One-time annual grants of up to $500 are given, with no requirement to be paid back, to qualified residential customers who meet the required income guidelines. Seniors and veterans approved for the program are provided an additional $150 grant. These funds are administered by The Salvation Army and are funded through direct contributions from Nicor Gas’ customers and employees. 
  • Energy Aide Program – Provides qualifying households with a grant of up to $350 toward their past due balance and does not need to be paid back. Residential customers must be at or below 350% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. 
  • Payment arrangements Provides eligible customers with more time to pay past-due balances and brings their account current to avoid possible service disconnection. Customers can check their eligibility for a payment arrangement by visiting nicorgas.com/myaccount. 
  • Budget Plan – Helps customers with current accounts avoid unpredictable bills from month-to-month by evening out the seasonal highs and lows of their bills through a monthly budgeted amount. Owed monthly amounts may be adjusted every four months to ensure that payments are in line with actual usage and the price of gas. Customers can check their eligibility for the Budget Plan by visiting nicorgas.com/budgetplan. 
  • Energy Efficiency Program – Provides free home assessments, energy-saving products and incentives to help you save money and energy. Eligible income-qualified households may receive additional free services and equipment upgrades. Customers can call (877) 866-4239 or visit nicorgas.com/saveathome. 
  • Community Connection Center (C3) – Helps customers navigate all the above options, as well as basic needs resources. Customers can contact the C3 team at nicorgas.com/CCC or self-serve online and get answers to anonymous questions by visiting the Community Assistance Navigator tool

To learn more about bill payment assistance programs, visit nicorgas.com/energyassistance. 

Nicor Gas serves more than 2.3 million customers in northern Illinois

Nicor Gas is one of four natural gas distribution companies of Southern Company Gas, a wholly owned subsidiary of Southern Company (NYSE: SO). Nicor Gas serves more than 2.3 million customers in a service territory that encompasses most of the northern third of Illinois, excluding the city of Chicago.

For more information, visit nicorgas.com

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