At KUB, we understand that the spread of COVID-19 has had an adverse financial impact for customers and businesses in our area. In response, we acted quickly to suspend disconnects for non-payment in March and have worked with individual customers to waive late fees.
As local government and businesses work to gradually return to normal operations, KUB is working to do the same through gradual resumption of normal business processes. Learn more about KUB's plan to resume normal processes, as well as available assistance, using the question and answers below.
If you have questions about your account or bill payments, call 865-524-2911 to speak to a customer service representative.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long will disconnections be suspended?
As local government and businesses work to gradually return to normal operations, KUB will work to do the same. KUB plans to begin normal business processees in early July. Previously, we communicated a plan to resume service disconnections on August 3. This plan has now been delayed until further notice as we assess the pandemic’s continued effects on our customers during Tennessee's extended State of Emergency. Customers may also call 865-524-2911 to speak with a customer service representative about bill payment assistance options.
Should I wait until KUB resumes disconnections to pay my bill?
KUB does not recommend waiting to pay your bill. Though services will not be disconnected during this pandemic, customers are encouraged to pay as much as possible on current or previous months' bills. Bills have continued to accrue even if service was not disconnected, and customers should pay as they are able to prevent high account balances when disconnects resume. Consider paying a small amount on your bill each week to reduce current and past due balances that would accrue late fees.
Processing fees for fee-based payment options have been waived through September 30.
Do late fees still apply during the pandemic?
While services will not be disconnected at this time, late payment fees on accounts will continue to accrue on past due account balances.
However, KUB will waive late fees that have accrued since March 16 for any customers who seek bill payment assistance who are granted due date extensions or who enter payment arrangements for bills unpaid while disconnections were suspended when disconnects for nonpayment resume. No additional late fees will be applied to the past due account balance during the period of extension or special payment arrangement period if the terms of repayment are honored. Call 524-2911 if you think you will have problems paying an upcoming KUB bill.
Are utility bill assistance programs available for businesses?
Tennessee small businesses are now eligible for disaster assistance loans through the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). Click here for more. KUB has suspended disconnections for all customers, including businesses, as we know many may be impacted. As we learn about assistance programs that could aid businesses, information will be provided on this page.
The SBA also offers loans through its Paycheck Protection Program to help small businesses keep their workforce employed during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Are there ways I can save on my utility bill during this time?
Yes, there are ways you can reduce your water and energy consumption. Learn some best practices by clicking here.
How can I get assistance?
Call KUB at 865-524-2911 to discuss specific details on your account with a customer service representative and to find an assistance method that best fits your needs.
Payment Due Date Extensions
KUB allows customers requesting additional time to make a single monthly payment to extend payment due dates up to 45 days past initial due dates. Due date extensions can be requested by speaking with a customer service representative or through KUB’s automated phone system.
Credit Payment Plans and Payment Agreements
KUB offers credit payment plans and payment arrangements for customers experiencing financial difficulties or crises, such as loss of employement or wages due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Typically, under these arrangements, customers are required to make initial payments, and any remaining balances can be paid in installments for a predetermined number of months.
Knoxville-Knox County Community Action Committee (CAC)
CAC currently provides many forms of utility payment assistance. For utility bill assistance, contact CAC's Energy and Community Services at 865-637-6700. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all KUB customers looking for bill payment assistance are encouraged to call this number instead of physically visiting CAC.
Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
Customer counselors also work with CAC, Douglas Cherokee, and East Tennessee Human Resources Agency (ETHRA) to assist customers who are applying to receive Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funds. Call the above CAC phone number or click here to find out if you are eligible to receive LIHEAP funds.
Project Help is an emergency energy assistance program that assists people in need living within the KUB service area, regardless of the energy source in their home. Project Help is committed to helping customers who need financial assistance on their utility bills due to circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of Project Help’s efforts to assist during this time, and in addition to KUB assistance measures already in place, Project Help is relaxing its income requirements, and more funds are becoming available to customers impacted by the current economic effects of COVID-19. If you have been financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and are unsure of your applicability to receive Project Help funds, please contact the Knoxville-Knox County Community Action Committee (CAC) Energy and Community Services line at 865-637-6700.
Currently, KUB employs three full-time counselors who, together, have 45 years of experience in social services assisting customers. They partner with over 100 agencies and faith-based organizations to assist families and individuals throughout our service area. In addition to working with local partners, customer counselors manage KUB programs and work closely with other KUB staff to educate and aid customers.
Tennessee Department of Human Services Assistance
On March 25, the Tennessee Department of Human Services announced that emergency cash assistance applications are now being accepted online for qualifying families that lost a job as a result of the pandemic state of emergency. Beginning on March 26, families can apply online for up to two months of emergency cash assistance if they were employed as of March 11, 2020, and have lost employment or at least 50 percent of their earned income as a result of the pandemic. Click the link above for more information, and click here to register to apply for emergency assistance.
Are there ways I can help others?
Per CDC guidance, following good hygiene and social distancing practice will help ensure that you and your communities remain healthy. If you would like to assist KUB customers who need help paying bills, consider donating to Project Help (see above description).