This letter was e-mailed and faxed to the Empire
Electric Company Offices.
Monday, November 27, 2000 7:00 am
Marie Ann O'Hara
The Ozark Offices of
Empire District Electric Cooperative
Dear Glen Blake:
Due to logistical difficulties, I have not yet been able to access a
portion of my funds this month. I anticipate that these problems
should be remedied within the next ten (10) days -- on or before
Friday, December 8, 2000.
Earlier this year, I had encountered similar difficulties and my
concerns were expressed to the Empire District Customer Service representative, June, at your offices in Ozark, Missouri
June had indicated then that there was no need for concern as
Empire had experienced a problem with the installation of the
new computer billing software.
For this reason, customers were granted a reprieve and there
would be no disconnections for late payments until the next
billing cycle -- that is, at least the 15th of the following month.
Further, your representative explained that in the event of a late
payment, Empire Electric allowed a grace period of ten (10) days
from the mid-month due date (until at least the 25th of that month)
BEFORE issuing a notice that the electricity would be disconnected
ten (10) days from the receipt of the disconnection notice.
Therefore, under this policy, there was no danger of an actual
disconnection of electrical services for late payment until at least
the 15th of the following month.
As a precaution, I asked a friend to verify that this was, in fact,
Indeed, a second and then a third Empire Customer Service
representative did confirm that this was without question Empire's
Nevertheless, without any warning of a change of procedure or
policy, last month, I received a disconnection notice on the 27th
of October that my electricity would be disconnected ... THAT
Your representative, June, was exceptionally gracious and kind
in negotiating the situation last month.
As a result, although the payment was delayed several days in
the mail, I was able to make my October payment of $152.00.
However, this past week, on November 22, 2000, the day before Thanksgiving, I once again received notice that my electricity
was to be disconnected TODAY (on November 27, 2000).
As I had anticipated this possibility, earlier this month -- on
November 14, 2000 -- my alarm over the situation had already
been expressed to your representative, June.
June was reassuring that my payment could be delayed without
the possibility of an actual disconnection until at least the first
week in December and affirmed that she would notify Travis
Jones of the Bolivar Offices of the Empire District Electric
Company of the possible delay of my November payment.
I appreciate your patience and understanding.
I expect that I will be able to make this payment -- the November
billing of $152.00 -- on or before Friday, December 8, 2000.
As you know, this situation is unique and complex.
This week, I have initiated yet another effort toward negotiating
a suitable resolution to these matters during (or before) the
December 11-12, 2000 meeting of the Executive Committee
of the Missouri Baptist Convention.
Additionally, I am completing the process of obtaining aid
from an out-of-state, non-profit organization.
I am hopeful that these efforts will successfully alleviate the
need for any future disruptions in my payment schedule.
In order to prevent any misunderstanding or the unintentional
disconnection of my electrical service, I would ask that you please
forward this information to Travis Jones of the Bolivar Offices
of the Empire District Electric Company as soon as possible.
Again, I appreciate your forbearance. I will endeavor to keep
you updated concerning any progress in these matters.
I wish you the happiest of Holiday Blessings.
cc Customer Service Representative, June,
Empire District Electric,
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