Change for Charity

Utility Bill Payment Assistance Program

Lending a helping hand to our neighbors in need

The Kerrville Public Utility Board (KPUB) approved the establishment of a new Change for Charity Program Fund at its June 17, 2020 board meeting in response to the COVID-19 health crisis for residential customers struggling to pay their electric bills.

How can someone apply/find out if they are eligible for bill payment assistance?

The Change for Charity program fund will be administered by the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, a 501c3 nonprofit, to grant electric bill assistance to eligible households. The funds are administered at no additional cost and are exclusively for KPUB’s residential customers.

KPUB will not handle any bill payment assistance requests directly. Requests for financial aid must be made through the Society of St. Vincent de Paul since they are the nonprofit organization that administers the program funds.

Eligibility for electric bill assistance through program funds is granted exclusively for KPUB residential customers and is qualified by the Society of St. Vincent de Paul for income-eligible households and on a case-by-case emergency situation.

Instructions to apply can be found on their website at svdpndkerr.org/financial-aid.

Program Opt Out

  • Check this box if you would like to request a refund.
  • By checking this box you will be removed from the Change for Charity program.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Why was the program established?
As of March 18, 2020, KPUB suspended disconnects for customers with past due accounts with any late fees/penalties being waived as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) health crisis. As a result, those past due bills have been accumulating each month for many of our neighbors experiencing financial hardships in our community.

The Kerrville Public Utility Board (KPUB) approved the establishment of the new Change for Charity program fund at its June 17, 2020, board meeting in response to this situation, to help our neighbors in need by providing utility bill assistance.

How does the program work?
Program funds will be collected by automatically rounding up the change on residential customers’ monthly electric bills to the next whole dollar. For example, if your utility bill is $87.63, it would be rounded to $88.00 even. The additional $.37 cents would be placed into the Change for Charity Program Fund.
How was I notified about this new program?
KPUB’s Board of Trustees approved the establishment of the program in an open, public meeting on June 17, 2020. Customers were notified in bill announcements during the month of July, an email message through SmartHub, KPUB’s website and various social media/press announcements explaining the program and how to opt-out of it.
Is program participation mandatory?

The donation amount to the program fund will be shown on a residential customer’s bill automatically beginning in July 2020. However, program participation is optional.

If a customer does not want to participate in the program, they can opt-out by contacting KPUB’s Customer Service Department at 830.257.3050, emailing [email protected] or through their online SmartHub account. Refunds will be granted to any residential customers who would like their donations refunded back to them, for up to 36 prior billing cycles. The refund will be issued as a credit to requesting customers on their next billing cycle.

What is the average amount a customer pays?
The average customer contribution per program participant is just $0.50 a month or $6.00, in change, a year. While that is a small amount, the dollars add up quickly when many customers participate.
Can someone choose to donate more?

Yes! Customers can opt to contribute a specific monthly amount or a combination of both (donating both the rounded-up change and an additional specific monthly amount). Contact KPUB’s customer service at (830) 257-3050 to customize your monthly contribution.

What if I was already donating to the Share the Light program?
Wonderful! The Change for Charity program will replace the Share the Light program. Your previous monthly donation to the Share the Light program will automatically transition over to the Change for Charity program, and no further action on your part is necessary.
Can a commercial customer participate in the program?

Commercial customer participation is not an automatic enrollment. But yes, commercial customers can request to be opted-in to the Change for Charity Program by contacting KPUB’s Customer Service Department at 830.257.3050, emailing [email protected] or through their online SmartHub account.

Does this assistance fund apply to any City of Kerrville water bill customers?
No, this program fund is exclusively for Kerrville Public Utility Board’s residential customers struggling to pay their electric bills. For any City of Kerrville utility bills, customers can seek assistance through a utility bill fund that is established with the Community Foundation of the Texas Hill Country or other local organizations granted bill payment assistance funds.
What happens after COVID-19?
For now, the program funds will be used to provide community assistance for KPUB customers who are struggling to pay their past-due electric utility bills as a result of the COVID-19 health pandemic.

The KPUB Board of Trustees will evaluate the program’s continuation when the City of Kerrville’s emergency declaration is no longer in effect. If the KPUB Board of Trustees does choose to continue the program, any future program funds accumulated that are in excess of our community’s need for electric bill assistance will be granted by a board-appointed committee to administer disbursements from the fund for charitable purposes in the KPUB service area.