SoCalGas Offers Grants to Customers Facing Financial Hardship

LOS ANGELES, March 31, 2011 – Families who need assistance paying their natural gas bills may receive help through Southern California Gas Co.’s (SoCalGas’) Gas Assistance Fund, which provides a one-time grant amount of up to $100 on a customer’s bill.  The program is administered by the United Way of Greater Los Angeles and is open to qualified customers facing economic hardship. 

The Gas Assistance Fund is a program that for the last 30 years has helped nearly 175,000 customers who have been struggling to pay their utility bills.  Since the program was launched, customers, employees, and shareholders of SoCalGas have contributed more than $16.2 million to the fund. Last year, over 8,200 customers benefitted from the program. 

To seek assistance anytime between now and the end of April (or until funds are depleted), customers can go to SoCalGas’ website socalgas.com/assistance to find out if they qualify, or call 2-1-1 for assistance in locating participating agencies in Southern California. 

SoCalGas and United Way of Greater Los Angeles work with approximately 80 to 100 volunteer nonprofit, community based organizations to assist income-qualified customers with obtaining a grant to pay their bill.

The utility encourages customers who may have difficulty paying their natural gas bills to contact SoCalGas to work out special payment arrangements or find out if they qualify for other bill-assistance programs the utility offers. 

For eligible customers with limited income and who meet other requirements, SoCalGas offers a 20-percent rate discount on monthly natural gas bills through the California Alternate Rates for Energy (CARE) program, and free energy-saving home improvements, including repair or replacement of qualifying home furnaces, through the Energy Savings Assistance Program.

For more information, visit SoCalGas’ website at socalgas.com, or call toll-free at (800) 427-2200 or (800) 342-4545 for Spanish.

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About Southern California Gas Co. 
Southern California Gas Co. has been delivering clean, safe and reliable natural gas to its customers for more than 140 years.  It is the nation’s largest natural gas distribution utility, providing service to 20.9 million consumers through nearly 5.8 million meters in more than 500 communities.  The company’s service territory encompasses approximately 20,000 square miles throughout central and Southern California, from Visalia to the Mexican border.  SoCalGas is a regulated subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE).

Contact: Raul Gordillo, Southern California Gas Co., (877) 643-2331, www.socalgas.com

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Sempra Energy , Southern California Gas Company