LAOAG CITY – The Ilocos Norte government on Monday urged public and private companies and organizations in the province to defer the payment of bills for at least a month to provide some relief to every household affected by the extended enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) due to the continuing upsurge of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
With the government banning large gatherings and public officials calling for residents to stay home and practice social distancing, those who work in the service industry and earn daily wages could face significant hardships.
With this in mind, Governor Matthew Joseph Manotoc, in a virtual press conference, said the Ilocos Norte Electric Cooperative (INEC) through general manager Engr. Felino Herbert P. Agdigos has already pledged to defer the August billing.
The provincial government, on the other hand, will work on the implementation of a government subsidy program to reduce the anxiety of residents who can not go to work or operate businesses due to a series of lockdowns.
To alleviate the negative effects of the enhanced community quarantine due to Covid-19, it may be recalled that INEC has suspended last year the disconnections for nonpayment electric bills.
This applied to all residential and commercial establishments covering the 21 towns and two cities of Ilocos Norte.
Earlier, several hotels and resorts in Pagudpud have sought the help of the provincial government as they struggle to keep their operations amidst a hard lockdown.
Other public utilities have yet to make any announcement regarding the governor’s appeal for a moratorium on bills payment while the province is under localized enhanced community quarantine until the end of this month. (PNA)