| (4) A REP may request disconnection of service to a
customer if payment from the energy assistance provider's pledge is
not received within the time frame agreed to by the REP and the energy
assistance provider, or if the customer fails to pay any portion of
the outstanding balance not covered by the pledge.
(j) Disconnection during extreme weather. A REP having
disconnection authority under the provisions of subsection (b) of
this section shall not authorize a disconnection for nonpayment of
electric service for any customer in a county in which an extreme
weather emergency occurs. A REP shall offer residential customers
a deferred payment plan upon request by the customer that complies
with the requirements of §25.480 of this title (relating to Bill
Payment and Adjustments) for bills that become due during the weather
(1) The term "extreme weather emergency" shall mean
a day when:
(A) the previous day's highest temperature did not
exceed 32 degrees Fahrenheit, and the temperature is predicted to
remain at or below that level for the next 24 hours anywhere in the
county, according to the nearest National Weather Service (NWS) reports;
(B) the NWS issues a heat advisory for a county, or
when such advisory has been issued on any one of the preceding two
calendar days in a county.
(2) A TDU shall notify the commission of an extreme
weather emergency in a method prescribed by the commission, on each
day that the TDU has determined that an extreme weather emergency
has been issued for a county in its service area. The initial notice
shall include the county in which the extreme weather emergency occurred
and the name and telephone number of the utility contact person.
(k) Disconnection of master-metered apartments. When
a bill for electric service is delinquent for a master-metered apartment
(1) The REP having disconnection authority under the
provisions of subsection (b) of this section shall send a notice to
the customer as required by this subsection. At the time such notice
is issued, the REP, or its agents, shall also inform the customer
that notice of possible disconnection will be provided to the tenants
of the apartment complex in six days if payment is not made before
(2) At least six days after providing notice to the
customer and at least four days before disconnecting, the REP shall
post a minimum of five notices in English and Spanish in conspicuous
areas in the corridors or other public places of the apartment complex.
Language in the notice shall be in large type and shall read: "Notice
to residents of (name and address of apartment complex): Electric
service to this apartment complex is scheduled for disconnection on
(date), because (reason for disconnection)."
(l) Disconnection notices. A disconnection notice for
(1) not be issued before the first day after the bill
(2) be a separate mailing or hand delivered notice
with a stated date of disconnection with the words "disconnection
notice" or similar language prominently displayed or, if the REP has
offered and the customer has agreed to receive disconnection notices
from the REP by email, be a separate email with the words "disconnection
notice" or similar language in the subject line. The REP may send
the disconnection notice concurrently with the request for a deposit;
(3) have a disconnection date that is not a holiday,
weekend day, or day that the REP's personnel are not available to
take payments, and is not less than ten days after the notice is issued;
(4) include a statement notifying the customer that
if the customer needs assistance paying the bill by the due date,
or is ill and unable to pay the bill, the customer may be able to
make some alternate payment arrangement, establish a deferred payment
plan, or possibly secure payment assistance. The notice shall also
advise the customer to contact the provider for more information.
(m) Contents of disconnection notice. Any disconnection
notice shall include the following information:
(1) The reason for disconnection;
(2) The actions, if any, that the customer may take
to avoid disconnection of service;
(3) The amount of all fees or charges which will be
assessed against the customer as a result of the default;
(4) The amount overdue;
(5) A toll-free telephone number that the customer
can use to contact the REP to discuss the notice of disconnection
or to file a complaint with the REP, and the following statement:
"If you are not satisfied with our response to your inquiry or complaint,
you may file a complaint by calling or writing the Public Utility
Commission of Texas, P.O. Box 13326, Austin, Texas, 78711-3326; Telephone:
(512) 936-7120 or toll-free in Texas at (888) 782-8477. Hearing and
speech impaired individuals with text telephones (TTY) may contact
the commission at (512) 936-7136. Complaints may also be filed electronically
(6) If a deposit is being held by the REP on behalf
of the customer, a statement that the deposit will be applied against
the final bill (if applicable) and the remaining deposit will be either
returned to the customer or transferred to the new REP, at the customer's
designation and with the consent of both REPs;
(7) The availability of deferred payment or other billing
arrangements, from the REP, and the availability of any state or federal
energy assistance programs and information on how to get further information
about those programs; and
(8) A description of the activities that the REP will
use to collect payment, including the use of consumer reporting agencies,
debt collection agencies, small claims court, and other remedies allowed
by law, if the customer does not pay or make acceptable payment arrangements
with the REP.
(n) Reconnection of service. Upon a customer's satisfactory
correction of the reasons for disconnection, the REP shall request
the TDU, municipally owned utility, or electric cooperative to reconnect
the customer's electric service as quickly as possible. The REP shall
inform the customer when reconnection is expected to occur in accordance
with the timelines set forth in this subsection and in §25.214
of this title (relating to Terms and Conditions of Retail Delivery
Service Provided by Investor Owned Transmission and Distribution Utilities).
For premises without a provisioned advanced meter with remote disconnect/reconnect
capabilities, if a REP submits a standard reconnect request and the
TDU completes the reconnect the same day, the TDU shall assess a standard
reconnect fee. A TDU may assess a same-day reconnect fee only when
the REP expressly requests a same-day reconnect and a REP may pass
through a same-day reconnect fee to the customer only when the customer
expressly requests a same-day reconnect. A REP shall send a reconnection
request no later than the timelines in this subsection. The TDU shall
complete the reconnection in accordance with the timelines in §25.214
of this title.
(1) For payments made before 12:00 p.m. on a business
day, a REP shall send a reconnection request to the TDU no later than
2:00 p.m. on the same day.
(2) For payments made after 12:00 p.m. but before 5:00
p.m. on a business day, a REP shall send a reconnection request to
the TDU by 7:00 p.m. on the same day.
(3) For payments made after 5:00 p.m. but before 7:00
p.m. on a business day, a REP shall send a reconnection request to
the TDU by 9:00 p.m. on the same day.
(4) For payments made after 7:00 p.m. on a business
day, a REP shall send a reconnection request to the TDU by 2:00 p.m.
on the next business day.
(5) For payments made on a weekend day or a holiday,
a REP shall send a reconnection request to the TDU by 2:00 p.m. on
the first business day after the payment was made.
(6) In no event shall a REP fail to send a reconnection
notice within 48 hours after the customer's satisfactory correction
of the reasons for disconnection as specified in the disconnection
(o) Electric service disconnection of a non-submetered
master metered multifamily property.
(1) In this subsection, "non-submetered master metered
multifamily property" means an apartment, a leased or owner-occupied
condominium, or one or more buildings containing at least 10 dwellings
that receive electric utility service that is master metered but not
(2) A REP shall send a written notice of service disconnection
to a municipality before authorizing disconnection of service to a
non-submetered master metered multifamily property for nonpayment
(A) the property is located in the municipality; and
(B) the municipality establishes an authorized representative
to receive the notice as described by paragraph (3) of this subsection.
(3) No later than January 1st of every year, a municipality
wishing to receive notice of disconnection of electric service to
a non-submetered master metered multifamily property shall provide
the commission with the contact information for the municipality's
authorized representative referenced by paragraph (2) of this subsection
by submitting that person's name, title, direct mailing address, telephone
number, and email address in a P.U.C. Project Number to be established
annually for that purpose. The email address provided by the municipality
may be for a general mailbox accessible by the authorized representative
established for the purpose of receiving such notices.
(4) After January 1st, but no later than January 15th
of every year, the commission shall post on its public website the
contact information received from every municipality pursuant to paragraph
(3) of this subsection. The contact information posted by the commission
shall remain in effect during the subsequent 12-month period of February
1 through January 31 for the purpose of the written notice of disconnection
required by paragraph (2) of this subsection.
(5) The retail electric provider shall email the written
notice required by this subsection to the municipality's authorized
representative not later than the 10th day before the date electric
service is scheduled for disconnection. Additional notice may be provided
by third-party commercial carrier delivery or certified mail.
(6) The customer safeguards provided by this subchapter
are in addition to safeguards provided by other law or agency rules.
(7) This subsection does not prohibit a municipality
or the commission from adopting customer safeguards that exceed the
safeguards provided by this chapter.
|Source Note: The provisions of this §25.483 adopted to be effective January 15, 2001, 26 TexReg 125; amended to be effective Spetember 12, 2002, 27 TexReg 8428; amended to be effective June 1, 2004, 29 TexReg 4756; amended to be effective March 8, 2007, 32 TexReg 1286; amended to be effective January 1, 2011, 35 TexReg 9232; amended to be effective December 6, 2012, 37 TexReg 9619; amended to be effective December 11, 2013, 38 TexReg 8819