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Tallahassee city commissioners approve program to reduce utility bills

Posted at 5:50 PM, Apr 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-22 17:53:28-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.(WTXL) — If you're worried about paying your bills, the city of Tallahassee says help is on way.

City commissioners just approved a new program to make your utility bill cheaper next month.

The newly approved relief program will give people about $30 off their utility bills this month.

The city suspended utility freezes when the coronavirus first started, and currently, customers can defer a bill into the fall if they can't afford to pay at the moment.

Now, a different program will give $6.3 million in immediate relief for May utility bills.

Those reductions will be across the board for every unit, so for a typical household that could be about $30.

You don't have to do anything to receive the discounts. They will be passed along automatically.

It's not just for homeowners, either. Small businesses will see a cut of about $45, $1,800 for medium-sized businesses, along with a $6,000 cut for larger companies.

That comes ahead of reducing bills.

City manager Reese Goad says they want to keep helping everyone until we all get through this.

"We're all in this together, of course," said Goad. "We've heard a lot of people say that and it couldn't be more true. This is a crisis that we've never seen before and we understand the financial implications of this. We've tried to find ways to provide immediate financial assistance to our community."

The city also approved a couple different grants for StarMetro, adding up to about $10 million. Another $21 million will go to the airport.

That money, through the CARES Act, is supposed to help make up for money lost during the pandemic.

The city did a study that shows an estimated $30.5 million will be lost due to the coronavirus pandemic.