TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Southwest Gas and Salvation Army are helping customers pay their gas bills this week.
The annual Southwest Gas Utility Assistance Days are going on Tuesday and Wednesday at the Salvation Army Hospitality House.
The program is intended to help customers with financial trouble pay gas bills that are current, past due, or even have late charges.
The program runs Tuesday and Wednesday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Salvation Army Hospitality House located at 1002 N. Main Ave. Customers do not need an appointment and are served on a first come, first served basis.
Customers will need to bring all of these documents:
- Recent Southwest Gas bill
- Social Security cards for all adults and children in the home
- Picture ID for all adults in the home
- Current award letter for SSI, Disability, Pension, Child Support, or unemployment
- DES award letter for foodstamps, AFDC
- Contract/Lease for Section 8/Conventional/HUD housing
- If you are not a U.S. citizen, bring identification like a valid passport, certificate, naturalization, valid resident alien card, current picture ID from country of citizenship.
In the first day of the program, more than 130 people showed up for help including John and Meg Watt.
The Watts took the bus to to the Salvation Army today because their car is broken down and repairs cost more than it is worth. Both of them have suffered medical problems for years including a broken neck and multiple strokes which left them unable to continue their jobs.
"We are kind of having to reinvent themselves," said Meg Watt. "In the meantime, utility bills you still use them. We needed a leg up, not a hand out."
The assistance day is funded through the Energy Share program with Southwest Gas. On the bottom of a gas bill is an option to donate $1, $5, or $10 to the program and it is tax-deductible. Donations help customers like the Watts who have fallen on hard times.
Southwest Gas gives the money to a third party group like the Salvation Army who distributes it to those in need.
"If they are struggling with their utility bill, they are probably struggling to put food on the table," said Shawna Kroh, a spokesperson for the Salvation Army.
When the Watts walked out of the building on Tuesday after getting some help paying their bill, they were more than grateful.
"I don't think I'm exaggerating in saying I think it could have saved our lives," said John Watt.