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Bill Assistance

If financial troubles are making it difficult for you to cover your CWLP bill, please let us know. We will do everything we can either to set up a convenient payment program or to help identify sources of assistance that might be available to you. The Bill Assistance option we offer are listed below.


Disconnections Suspended Due To COVID-19

Effective immediately, in support of the efforts to stop the spread of the coronavirus, we are suspending all disconnections for nonpayment for electric and water services for all customers. This order remains in effect through May 30, 2020, at such time it will be re-evaluated. To further support customers facing financial hardship in the weeks ahead, CWLP Customer Service will offer flexible payment plans for those needing assistance.

The Municipal Center West building where CWLP Customer Service is located is currently closed to the public. The CWLP drive up payment window located between the municipal building and Lincoln Library remains open. There are a number of alternative payment options beyond U.S. Mail and walk-in payments: Customers can use CWLP’s drive-up window, drop box next to at our drive-up payment window, make payments online or by phone (217.789.2030) or use CWLP payment drop boxes located at INB’s S. Sixth St. and N. Dirksen Pkwy. locations or the one at Heartland Credit Union on West White Oaks Dr.

See details on these other ways to pay here.

CWLP Customers can request assistance for payment plans and any other assistance by phone, 217.789.2030 or e-mail cwlp.customer@cwlp.com.

Financial Assistance During COVID-19

In addition to regular utility bill assistance programs such as LIHEAP and Project RELIEF, there are a number of financial assistance and loan programs that our residential and commercial customers may be eligible for, which could be used for CWLP bill payment. See our listing below and also refer to the City of Springfield’s COVID-19 resource page, https://www.springfield.il.us/COSCovid19.aspx.

General Assistance

United Way can provide assistance finding food, paying housing bills, access free childcare, or other essential services. Call 211 or visit United Way of Central Illinois’ website, click here. For the United Way 211 website click here.

Abundant Faith Ministries, 217.527.1006, is offering utility bill assistance.

Coronavirus-Related Paid Leave for Workers Tax Credits

As a follow-up to the federal government’s Families First Coronavirus Response Act, IR-2020-57 was introduced regarding Coronavirus-Related Paid Leave for Workers and Tax Credits for Businesses. If your business is looking at the possibility of laying off employees, this provision should be examined in conjunction with Governor Pritzker’s Executive Order issued on Friday, March 20.

COVID-19 and Unemployment Benefits

Unemployment benefits may be available to some individuals whose unemployment is attributable to COVID-19. IDES recently adopted emergency rules to try to make the unemployment insurance system as responsive to the current situation as possible. For more information please visit their website.

Please note: if you file an Unemployment Insurance claim on or after July 17, 2016 and you are subject to the registration requirement, you must complete your registration immediately through www.IllinoisJobLink.com.

Your Unemployment Insurance benefits will not be paid until your registration is complete. Click here to apply

COVID-19 Response Fund

The Community Foundation for the Land of Lincoln and United Way have partnered together with $50,000 in seed money to start the COVID-19 Response Fund. So far, donors have contributed more than $120,000 and already deployed its first grant of $30,000 to the Central Illinois Foodbank. This grant will be used to purchase non-perishable foods for an increasing number of Springfield-area families and individuals facing food insecurity.

Those interested in donating to the fund, click here.

DCEO Emergency Assistance Programs

Hospitality Emergency Grant Program
A $14 million grant program supporting working capital as well as job training, retraining, and technology to support shifts in operation. Eligible applicants include bars and restaurants with a valid license to serve food or liquor and who generated revenues of less than $1 million in 2019 and hotels with a valid license (hotels, motels, other lodging establishments) and who generated revenues of less than $8 million in 2019. Bars and restaurants that generated between $500K and $1M in revenue in 2019 are eligible for up to $25,000, and bars and restaurants that generated less than $500K in revenue in 2019 are eligible for up to $10,000. Hotels that generated less than $8M in revenue in 2019 are eligible for up to $50,000.

Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund
The Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund will offer small businesses low interest loans of up to $50,000. Businesses located outside of the City of Chicago with fewer than 50 workers and less than $3 million in revenue in 2019 will be eligible to apply. Successful applicants will owe nothing for six months and will then begin making fixed payments at a below market interest rate for the remainder of a five-year loan term.

Downstate Small Business Stabilization Program
To support small businesses in downstate and rural counties across Illinois, DCEO is repurposing $20 million in CDBG funds to stand up the Downstate Small Business Stabilization Program. This Fund will offer small businesses of up to 50 employees the opportunity to partner with their local governments to obtain grants of up to $25,000 in working capital. Local governments can apply on behalf of businesses with 50 employees or less. Only units of local government recognized by the Illinois Constitution and able to support economic development activities on a sufficient scale are eligible to apply for Economic Development grant funding. This includes cities, villages, and counties. Municipalities must not be a HUD direct Entitlement community or be located in an urban county that receives "entitlement" funds.

Federal CARES Act

The City of Springfield is closely following the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act is a document that has been created to help small business owners understand this bill better. Click here to read this guide.

Justine Petersen COVID-19 Relief Program

Justine Petersen is offering low interest small business loans to Illinois businesses impacted by this current pandemic. Maximum loan size is $50,000, with an interest rate of 3% amortized over 5 years. Loan proceeds may be used for working capital or to address other costs incurred during, or as a result of, the Covid-19 crisis. For more information, contact JP staffer Galen Gondolfi at ggondolfi@justinepetersen.org or call 314.565.2223.

Local Banks

Though it is not a government program, talking to your current bank is recommended if you are having any problems or anticipate any problems. As new programs become available, we will coordinate and send the information out. Most banks will handle concerns on a case by case basis. We spoke to almost all of our local and national lending institutions and they are all willing and ready to help.

Main Street Lending Program

The program is to assist small and mid-sized businesses with the purchase of up to $600 billion in loans. The Department of the Treasury, using funding from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) will provide $75 billion in equity to the facility.

The Main Street Lending Program will enhance support for small and mid-sized businesses that were in good financial standing before the crisis. The program:

  • Apply for regular unemployment before you apply for PUA.
  • If you applied for regular unemployment and have been denied between April 1, 2019 and today, do not reapply.
  • Go into your regular unemployment account and set up direct deposit for payment.
  • Have your 2019 tax return or proof of income ready and available.
  • Be prepared to certify.
  • Remember: You must submit a new application for PUA. The two systems are not transferrable.
  • A guide can be downloaded here.

Mortgage Assistance

Illinois Foreclosure Prevention Network: 855.533.7411

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA)

The Illinois Department of Employment Security is accepting applications for the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program beginning Monday, May 11.

  • Offers 4-year loans to companies employing up to 10,000 workers or with revenues of less than $2.5 billion in 2019 annual revenues.
  • Principal and interest payments will be deferred for one year.
  • Eligible banks may originate new Main Street loans or use Main Street loans to increase the size of existing loans to businesses.
  • Banks will retain a 5 percent share, selling the remaining 95 percent to the Main Street facility, which will purchase up to $600 billion of loans.
  • Minimum loan size of $1m.
  • Maximum loan size that is the lesser of (i) $150 million, (ii) 30% of the Eligible Borrower’s existing outstanding and committed but undrawn bank debt, or (iii) an amount that, when added to the Eligible Borrower’s existing outstanding and committed but undrawn debt, does not exceed six times the Eligible Borrower’s 2019 earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (“EBITDA”);
  • Firms seeking Main Street loans must commit to make reasonable efforts to maintain payroll and retain workers.
  • Borrowers must also follow compensation, stock repurchase, and dividend restrictions that apply to direct loan programs under the CARES Act.
  • Firms that have taken advantage of the PPP may also take out Main Street loans.
  • Must be a business created or organized in the United States or under the laws of the United States with significant operations in and a majority of its employees based in the United States.
  • Eligible Borrowers that participate in the Facility may not also participate in the MSNLF or the Primary Market Corporate Credit Facility.
  • Prepayment permitted without penalty.

Rental Assistance

  • Capital Township Office: 217.525.1736
  • Catholic Charities: 217.523.4551
  • Fifth Street Renaissance: 217.544.5040
  • Salvation Army: 217.525.2196
  • Sangamon County Community Resources: 217.535.3120

Save Small Business Fund

The Save Small Business Fund is a grant-making initiative offering short-term relief for small employers. The fund will make $5,000 grants to small businesses (3-20 employees) that have been harmed financially by the COVID-19 pandemic. A short application will go live on April 20, 2020, here.

Small Business COVID Relief Program

This new program was introduced by Illinois State Treasurer Michael Frerichs. The Program is an impact investment loan program under which the State Treasurer would make up to $250 million in deposits available to financial institutions throughout the state, at near-zero rates, to assist Illinois small business and non-profits negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The purpose of this funding is to provide vital economic support to small businesses and non-profits throughout Illinois to help overcome the loss of revenue they are experiencing. Click here to find out more.

Springfield Chamber’s Business Relief Fund

The Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce (GSCC) has created the Chamber Business Relief Fund to provide financial resources to businesses significantly impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. GSCC has seeded the Fund with $15,000, and members of its Board of Directors have contributed more than $10,000 in less than 24 hours to establish an initial fund of over $25,000.

Businesses can apply for funding at www.gscc.org. The intent of the funding is to act as a bridge, a lifeline to assist with the long-term sustainability of the businesses applying for and receiving funding.

Tax-deductible contributions can be made to the fund by clicking the “Donate Now” button on www.gscc.org. People may also text “RELIEF” to 866.612.5378, or mail a check payable to The Greater Springfield Chamber Foundation to the GSCC.

Verizon Small Business Recovery Fund

  • Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) will use the $2.5 million Verizon funding to provide grants of up to $10,000 to businesses facing immediate financial pressure because of COVID-19, especially entrepreneurs of color, women-owned businesses and other enterprises in historically underserved communities who don’t have access to flexible, affordable capital. Grant funds can be used for paying rent and utilities, meeting payroll, paying outstanding debt to vendors and other immediate operational costs.
  • Each application will be scored by the responses given to each question. All applications that score at or above the pre-determined threshold will be placed into a lottery for selection. Notifications will be made on April 14 and then a second round of funding will kick off that same day. Applicants meeting the threshold but not selected in round 1 will automatically be placed in the lottery for round 2.
  • Apply today

Project RELIEF

Project RELIEF is a CWLP program that offers financial assistance to customers with overdue electric or water bills who are facing service cut-off due to nonpayment. Qualifying customers must have a total household income for the previous 90 days of no more than 150% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines and must also have exhausted all other sources of assistance including those mentioned below. Customers may be required to cover some portion of their delinquent bills in order to receive help from Project RELIEF.

The first step in applying for Project RELIEF is to call the CWLP Project RELIEF Office at 217.789.2414. The program coordinator will conduct a telephone interview with you to determine if you meet the basic requirements for participation. If you do, an appointment will be scheduled for you with Fifth Street Renaissance, which administers the program for CWLP. Sign-up for Project RELIEF starts on or around December 1 of each year. The program runs through May or until funds are exhausted, whichever comes first.

Project RELIEF is funded almost entirely by customer and CWLP employee contributions. You can sign up to contribute here or to find out more about donating to Project RELIEF, contact our Customer Service at 217.789.2030.

Payment Arrangements

If you owe a previous past due amount on your current account, you might (at our discretion) be allowed to enter into a payment arrangement that will allow you to spread payments on the past due amount over a period of time. The precise terms of payment arrangements are determined on a case-by-case basis, but we will work with you in every way we can to make your payment plan as reasonable as possible for you.

For more information, call the Customer Service Office at 217.789.2030.

LIHEAP

LIHEAP stands for Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program. It is funded by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and administered by Sangamon County. The program provides qualifying Sangamon County residents with financial help to cover their energy bills. Eligibility is based on income. The LIHEAP office is located in Suite C100, 2833 S. Grand Avenue East (the former Cub Foods building). For more information, call 217.535.3120.

Capital Township Assistance

Located at 621 E. Monroe Street, this local governmental agency provides financial assistance, including help with utility bills, to qualifying residents of Capital Township. Assistance is limited to no more than once every two years. For more information, call the Township Office at 217.525.1736.

Woodside Township Assistance

Located at 490 North Street, this local governmental agency provides financial assistance, including help with utility bills, to qualifying residents of Woodside Township. For more information, call the Township Office at 217.522.3712.