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Self-Sufficiency Grant
Imminent Loss of Utilities


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Electric Bill

My Story:

Hello, I am in need of some help with my electric bill this month. I'll make this short and to the point. Two years ago I built a home for my family and I. I built the home from the ground up with all the work being done by myself. It took me about seven months to build. I eventually got laid off from my employer. I have poor credit from my early teen years. I eventually lost the house due to foreclosure and the economy downturn.

A friend across the street had a family member who offered to sell me his house for cheap. I took him up on the offer. I paid him a little bit up front from money I had saved. I still owe him a little bit more for the house, but he is working with me over the next few years.

After getting our first electric bill (due to all electric heat) I was shocked to see that it was so high. I thought something was wrong, but I was wrong. This is an older home, which I have put some money into to help keep bills down for this winter, but so far we have had successful one high electric bill after another for the months following. I am currently working part time, but I haven't been paid yet for services due to the client's negligence, otherwise I would have some money to put down towards electric bill.

We (my significant other) and I have had to use most of her income tax from last year when she babysat to pay for lawyer costs for custody of my other daughter, and we also paid 50% on last months electric bill as well as other bills in the house and some car repairs. I am just getting back to work after being terminated from my employment in October 2010.

I have two children, one 7 year old girl, and 20 month old son. My other daughter is 10, who has lived with her mother since birth. I do my best for my family. I have done several odd jobs for cash payments, but they usually help pay other expenses, diapers, etc.

I have spoken to the city, the providers of the electric. They provide electric, water, sewer and trash on one bill. They told me that they couldn't extend to allow me to get paid to come in and pay some on it. According to their policy from my reading, they can, but you have to sign a form stating when you will be in to pay, and you also have to pay the $25 reconnect fee, even though they don't shut you off. The electric man came today and gave me the shutoff notice.

I'm afraid I won't have electricity when I return home tomorrow from a meeting for our TANF. We do get TANF every month, which helps with the bills, but it's really hard when the bill is over $1000 and nobody seems to care, even with children in the home. Once I am paid for my service from my part time employment, I will be able to keep up with my bills. I got behind and it's really hard to get caught up. Thanks in advance. God Bless.

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