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Rent and Electric Bill Assistance

Hawaiian Electric News Release

With the moratorium on disconnections for nonpayment set to end May 31 for Hawaiian Electric customers, Molokai renters behind on utility bills are urged to seek financial help through new county program. Millions of dollars in federal assistance to households behind on rent and electric bills are now available through the County of Maui.

Disconnections for nonpayment and collections activities have been suspended for more than a year as part of Hawaiian Electric’s effort to help households affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The moratorium, set by the Public Utilities Commission, is scheduled to end on May 31.

The County of Maui is leveraging federal funds for the rent and utility assistance. The program is being administered in partnership with Catholic Charities of Hawaii.

Maui County renters or landlords may go to mauicounty.gov/MauiRentHelp or call (808) 873-4673 to learn more about the Maui County Emergency Rental Assistance Program.

Priority will be given to applicants who meet the following criteria:
• Have a household income less than 50 percent of the area median income for Maui County, OR
• Have at least one household member who has been unemployed for at least 90 days at the time of application and is still unemployed at the time of application

Only one person per household should apply. In addition, landlords may apply on behalf of their tenants, with the tenants’ permission. To apply for assistance, households must first complete an online pre-screening form. Once the pre-screening form has been received and reviewed, applicants will be contacted with further guidance on next steps. Applicants must:

• Show financial harm from the pandemic, such as qualifying for unemployment, job loss, reduction in wages, or increase in household expenses
• Show at least one household member is at risk of losing their housing
• Have a household income at or below 80 percent of the area median income for Maui County

While the end of the moratorium won’t trigger immediate disconnections, customers having difficulty paying their bill are urged to submit a payment arrangement request to ensure uninterrupted service. Go to hawaiianelectric.com/paymentarrangement to submit a request.

About 13 percent of the residential customers across our five-island service territory who are past due by more than 30 days are currently on a payment arrangement.

To request a payment arrangement, go to hawaiianelectric.com/paymentarrangement or submit the request form through the mobile app. By contacting Hawaiian Electric now and signing up for a payment plan, customers can avoid an electric service interruption.

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