Press Club

County Offers Help Paying Utility Bills for Furloughed Government Employees

If the government shutdown has you taking an involuntary vacation, Arlington County might be able to lend a hand in paying the bills.

The county says furloughed government employees struggling to pay utility bills can now apply for a “payment arrangement that will allow you to extend your payment without the accrual of any late fees.”

“Those affected by the shutdown have it bad enough already,” Peter Golkin, a spokesman for the county’s Department of Environmental Services, told ARLnow. “The county doesn’t want to make it worse with complications.”

Anyone interested in taking advantage of the program can call the county’s customer service center at 703-228-6570 to see if they qualify. Golkin said federal workers will simply need to “explain their circumstances, provide account information and we’ll take it from there case-by-case.”

As the shutdown enters its 20th day, roughly half of the 800,000 civilian government workers across the country are currently barred from working.

Most will miss their first paycheck of the shutdown tomorrow (Friday), and there seems to be no end in sight to the battle over President Trump’s coveted border wall.

Trump made headlines by storming out of a negotiation with Democratic leaders last night, leaving little hope for a quick resolution.

Should the shutdown continue through Saturday, it will be the longest one in the nation’s history.

Flickr pool photo by Kevin Wolf

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