Special Reconnect Order
Reconnect or avoid disconnection
Ohio’s electric and natural gas customers have the opportunity to use the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio's (PUCO) Special Reconnect Order (SRO)—formerly known as the Winter Reconnect Order (WRO)—from October 17, 2022 through April 14, 2023 to reconnect or to avoid disconnection of their utilities. The SRO applies only to Ohio’s investor-owned electric and natural gas utilities and does not apply to municipally-owned utilities or rural electric co-ops.
To use the Special Reconnect Order, contact your utility company. For information on payment plans and other bill-paying assistance, contact your utility and your local Community Action Agency.
- The Order allows any electric or natural gas customer of an investor-owned utility to avoid disconnection or to reconnect their service for $175, even if the customer owes more and cannot afford to pay the entire balance.
- If reconnection charges apply, customers may also be charged up to $36 at the time of reconnection. If the reconnection fee is greater than $36, the customer may have the balance of the fee applied to the next month’s bill.
- Customers owing more than $175 will then need to make payment arrangements with the utility for the rest of their past due amount. For some customers this may include enrolling in Ohio’s Percentage of Income Payment Plan (PIPP Plus).
- Eligible PIPP Plus customers with past due amounts greater than $175 may be able to have any remaining unpaid balance placed in their PIPP arrearage. For more information, contact the local community action agency.
- The SRO can also be used by consumers wishing to establish new service. If charged a security deposit by the natural gas or electric utility company that exceeds $175, customers can pay $175 and be charged the remainder of the deposit on their next month’s bill.
No income restrictions
The SRO does not have any income restrictions. If a customer is eligible for the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) which is based on 175% of the federal poverty guidelines, they may be able to use the HEAP Winter Crisis Program to secure the $175 required to maintain or restore their utility service under the SRO rules.
- Consumers may use the SRO once per utility during the heating season as defined above; or
- If both the gas and electric utilities are in disconnect status (disconnected or with a disconnect notice) the customer may use the SRO to apply to both utilities at the same time, splitting the $175 between the two.
Speak with a representative of the utility company or your local community action agency before using the SRO to ensure that the utility understands the $175 payment is being used in accordance with the SRO. Otherwise it is possible that the money may be applied to your past due account without receiving the benefit and protection of the SRO.
If a customer is using the HEAP Winter Crisis Program, the community action agency will coordinate with the utility.
To find the community action agency in your area, select ‘Find a local provider’ at www.energyhelp.ohio.gov or call 1-800-282-0880. If a customer is not working through the community action agency and they would like someone to assist them in talking to their utility company, customers can call the PUCO at 1-800-686-7826.
Contact the utility:
AES Ohio (formerly Dayton Power & Light)
American Electric Power
CenterPoint Energy (formerly Vectren)
Cleveland Electric Illuminating
Columbia Gas of Ohio
Dominion East Ohio Gas
Duke Energy Ohio
To download: Click the folder with a down arrow icon. To print: Click the printer icon in the top right of the display.
If you need multiple copies for an organization or group, please contact a member of our outreach team.