Coronavirus Impact: San Francisco to suspend power and water shutoffs, waive penalties for late bills

SAN FRANCISCO -- In an effort to help residents who aren't getting a paycheck during the COVID-19 outbreak, water and power in San Francisco will not be shut off due to delinquent payments and penalties will be waived for late payments to SF Muni or the public utilities commission, Mayor London Breed said Saturday.

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For the next two months, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission will suspend shut-off of power and water service for non-payment of water and sewer bills and waiving late payment penalties for residents and SFPUC Hetch Hetchy power customers in San Francisco.

"We are continuing to implement policies to protect our residents who are struggling due to loss of income during this challenging public health crisis," Breed said.

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The city has also recently suspended residential evictions in recent days to help residents cope.

The SFMTA will also suspend late penalties on citations, extend deadlines for citation protests and no longer forward additional delinquent citations to the California Department of Motor Vehicles or Special Collections.

"Our agency is committed to doing our part in providing much needed relief for San Franciscans impacted by the COVID-19 emergency" said Jeffrey Tumlin, SFMTA Director of Transportation. "We know that penalties in difficult times are a burden, and we're also sensitive to the need to limit in-person transactions."

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The San Francisco Department of Public Health's recommendations on COVID-19 can be found at sfdph.org/dph/alerts/coronavirus.asp. In addition, mayoral declarations on the virus can be found at sfmayor.org/mayoral-declarations-regarding-covid-19.

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