Mo. bill would bar utility shut-offs on hot days

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Missourians struggling to pay utility bills could get some hot-weather relief under legislation endorsed by the Senate. The proposal would prohibit electric or natural gas companies from shutting off service to delinquent customers on days when the temperature is forecast to rise above 95 or the heat index above 105. A cold weather rule already prohibits utilities from shutting off service between March and November when the temperature is forecast to dip below 32. Senate Minority Leader Maida Coleman, of St. Louis, says her legislation is needed because Missouri is among the national leaders in heat deaths. Senators gave initial approval to the bill Monday. It needs another vote to go to the House.

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