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Regulated utilities extend customer protections due to virus

Illustration courtesy of Centers for Disease Control.

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Regulated utilities in Michigan have agreed to extend service shut-off protections, flexible payment plans and other options offered to customers struggling with bills due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Michigan Public Service Commission says the extensions will go through mid-June.

Jackson-based Consumers Energy and Detroit-based DTE Energy have extended protections through June 12, following Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s stay-at-home order extension.

The Public Service Commission in April directed regulated electric and natural gas utilities to file affirmations that certain minimum customer protections were in place.

The commission’s regulatory jurisdiction does not include municipally owned utilities or rural electric co-operatives, but most have observed the call for minimum protections and assistance.