Following the recent initiative of Governor Ned Lamont to support government employees impacted by the federal government shutdown, Norwich Public Utilities (NPU) announces that it will waive late fees for federal employees who are not being paid and are unable to pay their utility bills while the situation continues.

“We do not know how many of our customers are impacted by the government shutdown, but if our small gesture helps even one family through this difficult time, it will be worth it,” said Chris LaRose, Acting General Manager at NPU. “We are offering any of our impacted customers a little flexibility during this unprecedented time in the hopes that they can breathe a bit easier.”

Through this program, any NPU customer who can verify that they have been furloughed or are currently working their federally-funded job without compensation as a result of the federal government shutdown will not be charged the standard 1.5% of the outstanding balance as a late fee for as long as the shutdown continues.

Customers can verify their employment showing a pay stub or federal identification at the NPU Customer Service Center at 173 North Main Street in Norwich during regular business hours.

Customers will continue to accrue their normal balances on their accounts for all services, but NPU is committed to helping to establish payment plans over several months to bring all accounts current over time whenever needed.

“This government shutdown could have long-term consequences for the economy and for individuals and families here in Norwich. It is our obligation to provide assistance when we can for the community we serve,” said LaRose.

On Tuesday, Governor Ned Lamont announced a proposal to provide interest-free loans from local banks to federal employees who are not eligible for unemployment compensation during the government shutdown. News reports indicate that there are approximately 1,500 federal employees in Connecticut.