Roanoke, Va., July 15, 2009 – Appalachian Power President and COO Dana Waldo today announced that the company and its stockholders will dramatically increase their contributions from $210,000 to $1,025,000 this year to help low-income customers pay their electric bills.
Appalachian Power is affiliated with two assistance programs in its service territory, the Neighbor-to-Neighbor program for customers in Virginia and Tennessee, and the West Virginia Utility Assistance Program. For the 2008-2009 heating season the company and stockholders contributed $100,000 each for West Virginia and Virginia, and $10,000 in Tennessee. The distribution for the 2009-2010 heating season will include $500,000 for both West Virginia and Virginia, and $25,000 for Tennessee.
Both of the low income energy assistance programs are oriented toward customer contributions, although Appalachian has historically supported the programs with contributions or matching funds. The funds are distributed by human services organizations in each state.
“For more than 25 years our company, shareholders and customers have generously helped those in need pay their electric utility bills,” Waldo said. “Especially in light of the economic conditions and the increasing costs associated with energy we are pleased to be able to increase our contributions at this time.”
Social services organizations rely on a variety of funding sources including the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Low Income Heating Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) which provided $5.1 billion in funding nationwide last fiscal year.
Customer contributions to the Neighbor-to-Neighbor fund and the West Virginia Utility Assistance Program are critical. Contributions to the Neighbor-to-Neighbor program in Virginia and Tennessee are accepted November through February. Contributions to the West Virginia Utility Fund are accepted year round. Customers who wish to contribute should make their checks payable to “Appalachian Power, Neighbor-to-Neighbor Program or West Virginia Utility Fund” and send them to Appalachian Power, P.O. Box 24404, Canton, OH 44701-4404. The West Virginia Utility Fund also accepts donations on-line at www.DollarEnergyFund.org and from customers who use the check-box feature on their Appalachian Power utility bills. The tax deductible contributions are distributed in the state in which they originate, and those making donations will receive a receipt.
Appalachian Power provides electricity to 1 million customers in Virginia, West Virginia and Tennessee (as AEP Appalachian Power). It is a unit of American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP), one of the largest electric utilities in the United States, with more than 5 million customers in 11 states. AEP ranks among the nation’s largest generators of electricity, owning nearly 38,000 megawatts of generating capacity in the U.S. AEP also owns the nation’s largest electricity transmission system, a nearly 39,000-mile network that includes more 765 kilovolt extra-high voltage transmission lines than all other U.S. transmission systems combined.
Corporate Communications Manager – VA/TN
Corporate Communications Manager – WV