NEW ORLEANS - Tomorrow, the New Orleans City Council will consider a resolution to suspend utility electric and gas shut-offs through July 1. The resolution comes after Entergy New Orleans had previously agreed to voluntary service shut-off moratoriums since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"The COVID-19 pandemic has continued to illuminate the economic disparities in our community and the clear need for more substantial intervention for our people," said Council Utilities Chair Helena Moreno. "With job and wage losses still mounting, too many in our community are facing tough choices. As their bills have piled up, work has dried up. With this resolution, we will continue to offer a lifeline to those facing difficulties so they may avoid losing access to essential utility services while they are safer at home."
The resolution prevents service disconnects until July 1, and allows for ongoing extensions to that suspension as needed. It also creates an accounting of incremental COVID-19 costs accumulated by the utility in order for the Council to fully review and vet any claims for costs made by Entergy New Orleans.
Moreno continued, "While a shut-off moratorium is a critical tool to help protect New Orleanians, we hope to soon unveil an even more expansive utility assistance project in the very near future. We need to do whatever it takes to sustain our community and provide a path forward for our families. I intend to continue the fight to do so."
Resolution R-20-133 will be considered by the full Council during tomorrow's regular meeting (May 21). The virtual meeting will be streamed online at council.nola.gov starting at 10 AM. To submit public comment, click here.