Cleveland Public Power changes policy on disconnection

(Plain Press, September 2006) Many individuals, agencies and council people were surprised to learn that, effective August 1, 2006, Cleveland Public Power (CPP) had changed their policy on disconnections.

 Prior to August 1st anyone who had been disconnected had to come up with half of the past due amount in order to be reconnected. Now if you have been disconnected by CPP, you must pay the full back balance before service can be reconnected. Needless to say this is, and will continue to be, beyond the resources of many who depend upon CPP for electric power.

 The change also prevents most agencies and assistance programs from providing assistance with bills, as the resources available to them will not cover the full bill. It appears that the new “all or nothing” policy of CPP will result in decreased dollars as well as ensuring that a significant number of residents remain disconnected.

 As a result of this policy change, a number of organizations and individuals have come together to protest not only this most recent change, but many of the other ongoing policies of Cleveland Public Power. The group, led by the May Dugan Center and United Clevelanders against Poverty, is seeking a meeting with Mayor Frank Jackson and his key administrators. Also included in any discussion would be the lack of written policy, the lack of notice provided to the community when change occurs, the manner in which disconnections occur, and the medical exemption policy.

 As we move to these discussions, we need to know more about individual experiences with CPP. If you have been disconnected for any reasons or have had problems paying your bill with CPP, call Tim Walters at the May Dugan Center at 631-5800. Also, if you work with those in the community who have been disconnected or face disconnection by Cleveland Public Power, we would like to here from you as well. All information provided will be held in confidence if so wished.


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