CL&P has confirmed that it is having problems with its new billing service caused since the giant utility moved accounts receivable operations from Connecticut to Dallas.
The confirmation came as the result of accusations made public by State Sen. Michael McLachlan Wednesday that hundreds of CL&P customers have received shut off notices despite the fact that they were current on their bills.
“Unfortunately we are experiencing mailing delays with some of our customer payments. We are working closely with postal service representatives in Connecticut and Texas to determine what’s causing the problem and how to quickly resolve it,” CL&P spokesman Mitch Gross said in a response to McLachlan’s complaint.
“In the meantime, we are also making short term adjustments to our credit process and are temporarily suspending late payment charges for customers if their account is in good standing,” Gross said.
“We’d also like to remind customers that we have several alternative payment options, which include paying electronically online or having their payment automatically deducted from their bank account.”
In March 18 letters to the presidents of CL & P and Yankee Gas McLachlan noted that CL & P moved its accounts receivable operations from Connecticut to Dallas, Texas.
The former two-day payment processing service in Hartford now takes two weeks in Dallas the Republican senator said.
“Why would a major corporation want their payments floating in the U.S. Postal Service traveling from Connecticut to Texas?” McLachlan said. “It defies logic.
“Many of my constituents have contacted me to share their frustration with CL & P’s customer service department in response to a CL & P shut-off notice. One person told me, ‘I’ve never been late paying my bills, and now they send me a shut-off notice and charge me a late fee?’
“Another constituent received a shut-off notice and the power was turned off. Unfortunately, their payment was received on-time by CL & P and the power was restored. After a contentious phone call to customer service, CL & P removed the ‘reconnection fee’ from the customer’s bill.
“Phone calls to CL & P often result in a response saying, ‘Don’t worry, we received your payment.’ Tell that to a senior citizen who has never experienced the alarm of a shut-off notice.
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