November 2021 Bill Insert: Tips to Prepare for Winter
TIPS TO PREPARE FOR WINTER AND HELP LOWER YOUR BILL
As colder weather arrives, Metropolitan Utilities District (M.U.D.) encourages its customers to conserve energy to prepare for higher heating bills. To avoid bill fluctuations, consider enrolling in the Budget Payment Plan, which allows you to pay the same bill amount every month. You may join the plan any time of the year. Here are more tips to help you prepare for the heating season and save on your utility bills:
Have your heating system and chimney inspected every year. Properly operating appliances lower utility bills and help prevent carbon monoxide from escaping into your home. • Lower your thermostat. The Department of Energy estimates savings of about 1 percent for each degree of thermostat adjustment per 8 hours. (Note: People with health concerns may want to raise the thermostat to prevent hypothermia.) • Clean or replace furnace filters once a month or as needed. • Keep the fireplace damper closed unless a fire is going.
• Check ducts for air leaks. If you use duct tape for repairs, look for the Underwriters Laboratories (UL) logo to avoid tape that degrades, cracks and loses its bond with age. • Clean warm-air registers. Make sure they are not blocked by furniture, carpet or drapes. • Keep drapes and shades on south-facing windows open during the day for warm sunlight. Close them at night. • Use kitchen, bath and other ventilating fans wisely. In one hour, these fans can pull out a houseful of warmed air.
M.U.D. understands some customers facing financial hardships may struggle to pay their utility bills. We are committed to working with our customers to discuss payment arrangements and provide information on potential utility assistance funds. We encourage customers to contact Customer Service at 402.554.6666 to discuss their account. For information on utility assistance, including M.U.D.’s Home Fund, visit mudomaha.com/homefund.
DID YOU KNOW?
Demand for natural gas in the U.S. has increased by 4.4 percent compared to 2020, while natural gas supply has only increased by 0.5 percent. This, coupled with U.S. storage inventories down 17 percent from last year along with an increase in liquefied natural gas exports, has caused gas market fluctuations. Winter weather conditions also drive how much prices continue to change. M.U.D. has strategies in place, including on-site gas storage, multiple pipeline suppliers and a variety of discounted contracts which will save customers approximately $26.4 million in 2022. Our customers continue to receive natural gas at a cost that is among the lowest in the nation. In fact, M.U.D. ranked second lowest residential gas bill in 2021 as compared with 39 other U.S. utilities from the annual Memphis Gas, Light and Water survey.
ROUND UP YOUR BILL AND HELP THOSE IN NEED
There is a growing need for utility assistance, especially during the heating season. If you don’t already donate to M.U.D.’s Home Fund, please consider rounding up your monthly bill and help those in need in our community. The fund, established to assist seniors, people with disabilities and limited-income customers suffering severe financial hardships, has raised more than $4.5 million and served more than 35,000 households. When you round up your bill on a recurring basis, the proceeds go to the Home Fund and are administered by local agency partners. Please note, if you are enrolled in the Budget Payment Plan with an even dollar amount, you can still participate and request that your bill be rounded up by $1 increments. There are three ways to enroll in the Bill Round Up Program. Please select the one that’s best for you! • Submit via the Contact Us page at mudomaha.com/contact-us. Use the drop-down menu: Donate to Utility Assistance, and then sub-menu: Enroll in Round Up Your Bill Option. (Please note: You will need to have your M.U.D. account number handy when completing the form.) • Check a box on your bill remit statement and write “Round Up” in the “Other” line. • Call Customer Service at 402.554.6666 and speak with an agent. This information is also posted on our website at mudomaha.com/billroundup. Your donation may be tax-deductible to the extent allowed by the law. Consult your tax adviser if you have questions.
At M.U.D., we know our most important asset is our diverse employee base. We seek individuals at varied levels of their careers to join our dedicated and knowledgeable team of first-class employees. We provide ongoing opportunities to develop and strengthen skills and knowledge while using the latest technologies. Our career opportunities range from entry level to seasoned career needs and we employ individuals with professional, technical, support and administrative experience and education. Our work covers a variety of disciplines from construction, engineering, customer service, accounting, information technology, marketing and more. We also focus on a variety of trades from electrician, pipe fitter, automotive mechanic, welder, maintenance and more. To view current opportunities or apply, visit mudomaha.com/careers.
M.U.D. is committed to employing a diverse workforce that reflects the community that we serve and that is inclusive of and respects employees’ individual differences. We value and embrace an employee’s need to bring their authentic self to work.
WHO WE ARE
M.U.D. is a vital part of the Omaha metro area, providing life-essential natural gas and water services to more than 600,000 people. M.U.D. is proud to be customer-owned. As a political subdivision of the State of Nebraska, M.U.D. was formed in the early 1900s. The Nebraska Legislature knew early on the best way to provide reliable and cost-effective services was by forming a publicly owned utility. • More than 800 employees live and work in the communities we serve. • We are the fifth largest public natural gas utility in the U.S. • We serve natural gas to more than 235,000 customers and provide safe drinking water to more than 220,000 customers. • Our system includes three water treatment facilities and we maintain more than 27,000 hydrants for fire protection.
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