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JPS announces flexi payment option for COVID-hit customers

Published:Saturday | March 28, 2020 | 12:00 AM
McDonald: We can't do this alone, we need you to play your part.

The Jamaica Public Service (JPS) Company says it will be providing flexible payment terms for customers who may be affected by the downturn in the economy as a result of the coronavirus.

In a digital briefing a short while ago, senior vice president of customer services Ramsay McDonald said, however, that the affected customers must contact the light and power company to make the necessary adjustments.

"We can't do this alone, we need you to play your part," said McDonald with chief financial officer Vernon Douglas reminding that people who can pay their bills should do so as the company needs money to continue operating.

In the meantime, the JPS has suspended the disconnection of electricity for non-payment of bills for the elderly and the disabled and adjusted the time before it's triggered for other customers.

McDonald also said maintenance outages have been limited to ones that are critical and should not last for more than six hours.

At the same time, Douglas says the JPS has asked the government to remove the General Consumption Tax from all bills for a period of 90 days.

He said the company has also asked the Administration to remove the Special Consumption Tax from fuel to make electricity more affordable in this time of this national crisis.

"The tax breaks that we are seeking in particular will result in a significant dent in electricity pricing if effectuated," said Douglas.

The JPS also wants the Government to allow it to access the foreign exchange to procure fuels for electricity production.

While all that is happening, Douglas said the JPS is working with suppliers to get extension on credit terms in what he described as "a very challenging" time.

The JPS chief financial officer also said the company is considering removing late fees from overdue bills on a case-by-case basis for customers who cannot afford to meet their deadlines.

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