February 3, 2021
The City of South Bend is launching an assistance program to help its low-income customers with their utility bills for services such as drinking water and wastewater. The low-income Customer Assistance Program (CAP) provides a credit for sewer service on the monthly bill of qualifying residential utility customers. Qualifying customers could see a reduction in their bill from $10 to $19 every month for a year. Applicants must have a City of South Bend utility account in their name and receive sewer service.
The City is partnering with REAL Services to qualify customers utilizing the same criteria used for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which provides assistance for electric and heating expenses during the winter months. Interested customers must first apply for LIHEAP through REAL Services by calling 574.232.6501. The application deadline is May 15, 2021. Customers who qualify for LIHEAP will be automatically enrolled in the City’s Customer Assistance Program. The credit will be reflected on their next bill.
“The Customer Assistance Program is a good step to help our residents in need make ends meet, especially during these difficult economic times,” said Mayor James Mueller. “I will look to work with Councilmembers and the City team to build on this critical program going forward.”
The low-income Customer Assistance Program is funded through ratepayers. Every residential sewer customer is charged an additional $1.75 per month to provide a credit for qualifying low-income residential sewer customers. This fee is reflected in the monthly sewer charge for every residential account who receives sewer service from the City.