Snohomish County Public Utility District No. 1

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Customer Service (M-F 8a-5:30p): 425-783-1000

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Here you will find press releases, special reports, our customer newsletter ("The Wire"), our customer magazine ("Current") and our Outage Center.

Press Releases

(Archived News)

  • Snohomish PUD Expands Payment Options as Meter Reading Resumes

    Residential energy use has been higher amid stay-home order

    As the state moves toward reopening more businesses in the wake of COVID-19, Snohomish County PUD will implement a gradual and safe return of select field operations, including meter reading. Disconnections and late fees remain temporarily paused for PUD customers.

    The PUD continues to offer its Community Support Plan for any customer experiencing a financial hardship related to the pandemic. Since late March, nearly 9,000 customers have sought assistance from the PUD through a combination of bill credits, expanded bill discount qualifications, and flexible payment plans.

    When meter reading resumes June 1, customers will begin to transition off estimated bills. After a customer’s meter is read, the following bill will account for any variance in recent estimates, which are based on previously known energy use over time. For small businesses experiencing reduced hours or lower productivity, this may result in a bill credit.

    For many residential customers, the extended time at home has likely resulted in higher energy use. This can include the extended use of lights, televisions, appliances, computers and electric heating or air conditioning. As a result, residential customer bills may be higher than expected. Any customer who needs assistance paying a PUD bill may contact Customer Service at (425) 783-1000. The PUD is proud to partner with customers on expanded payment options and flexible solutions.

    “We realize the hardship even a typical bill may place on some families, especially at this time,” says Pam Baley, Assistant General Manager of Energy & Customer Services. “As meter reading resumes and estimates are balanced against actual usage, we are ready to help any customer whose bill is higher than expected.”

    Meter readers returning to the field will follow strict social distancing guidelines for their safety and the safety of PUD customers, who are asked to please refrain from close contact. If meter readers feel unsafe for any reason, they have the authority to not read a meter, which would result in an estimated bill. Customers who believe their bill does not closely reflect their usage can call Customer Service at 425-783-1000.

    “Our highest priority at the PUD is the safety and well-being of our employees and our customers,” Baley says. “We want our customers to know we are here to help.”

  • SnoPUD to Temporarily Suspend Reading Meters Due to COVID

    PUD customers can call Customer Service at 425-783-1000 for help with estimated bills - UPDATED 4/22/20

    With a focus on keeping its employees and customers safe during the COVID-19 outbreak, Snohomish County PUD has temporarily suspended reading meters and paused sending meter readers into the field. The delivery of critical power and water services remains unaffected.

    As a result, PUD residential and small business customers may temporarily receive an estimated bill rather than one based on an accurate read. The PUD has made significant strides in recent years to improve its estimation accuracy. Estimated bills now draw on both prior usage patterns and known weather conditions to predict customer usage during the month their meter was not read.

    However, customers whose behaviors have changed during the COVID-19 outbreak will likely receive an estimated bill that reflects their typical usage. That includes residential customers who are staying home and using more energy or small business customers whose businesses have closed. 

    After the PUD begins reading meters again, any difference between the estimated usage and the actual usage is balanced on the customer’s next bill. This is known as a “true-up” bill and may result in either a credit to the customer’s account or additional payment.

    Customers who believe their estimated bill is a mistake, or struggle to pay their bill, are encouraged to call the PUD’s Customer Service at 425-783-1000 and talk to a representative about solutions. The PUD is prepared to assist customers and support their needs in this time. Options include:

    • Updated 4/22/20: Before receiving a bill, customers can visit our meter reading site to find out the date(s) to upload their meter photo(s) to prevent an estimated bill. (See examples).
    • Updated 4/22/20: After receiving an estimated bill that seems high/low, customers can visit our meter reading site and upload their meter photo(s) (see examples). The window to submit the photo for correction will be shown. If necessary, the PUD will adjust the bill to reflect the information shown on the meter.
    • Customers may opt to pay the amount billed for the previous month if they believe it more accurately reflects recent usage.
    • Customers can join the PUD’s Budget Payment Plan, which equalizes a customer’s payments each month throughout the year.
    • Customers who have suffered sudden job loss or business limitations may seek support through the PUD’s Community Support Plan. Eligible customers can receive a credit on their bill.

    The PUD has also temporarily paused disconnects and late fees to help customers.

    “We have improved our processes around estimating bills, but we also understand the challenge some of our customers have with estimates,” said John Haarlow, Snohomish PUD CEO/GM. “I want customers to know that we are dedicated to finding solutions for them during this time.”

  • SnoPUD’s Community Support Plan to Help Those Affected by COVID

    Residential and small business customers experiencing hardships may be eligible for bill credits

    In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, Snohomish County PUD has developed a COVID Community Support Plan to help customers struggling to pay their electric and water bills. The plan makes funds available for both residential and small business customers affected by the COVID outbreak.

    “We know these are challenging times for some of our customers and we want to ensure that we are helping support those that need help,” said John Haarlow, Snohomish PUD CEO/GM. “We are all in this together and as a provider of a critical service we play an important role, one which we take seriously.”

    The PUD’s plan not only allows for residential customers who have suffered sudden job loss to get immediate help, but also small business owners who have experienced rapid loss of business as well. Customers experiencing hardships due to the COVID outbreak can call the PUD’s Customer Service at 425-783-1000 (M-F, 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.) to get help.

    “This is an evolving situation, and we see this as a needs-based plan that can quickly serve our customers who have had their lives turned upside down,” said Pam Baley, PUD Assistant General Manager of Customer & Energy Services. “For customers in need now, we want to help with their utility bill so they can take care of what really matters.” 

    The PUD’s Customer Support Plan will be regularly evaluated by PUD leadership in order to best serve its customers.

    The PUD’s Community Support Plan allows for:

    • Bill credit for residential customers who have experienced an income loss due to the COVID outbreak.
    • Bill credit for small business customers who have had their operations limited or closed due to the COVID outbreak.

    The new Community Support Plan is in addition to what the PUD has already done to help customers keep their lights on and water running in these extraordinary times, including:

    PUD customers can also help families or individuals struggling to pay their bills through the PUD’s Project PRIDE (Providing Relief for Individuals Dependent on Energy) program. Donations to Project PRIDE are used to provide one-time grant for customers who need help paying their PUD bill. Customers can donate using an online donation form, use the Project PRIDE donation slip included on their bill or send a check payable to "Project PRIDE" (send to St. Vincent de Paul, P.O. Box 2269 Everett, WA 98213).

    Customers can also save money by conserving energy. With more people remaining home, that can be difficult. The PUD offers several free and easy energy saving strategies to help customers reduce usage and expenses, including:

    • Practice zoned heating and lighting. A simple way to reduce energy usage is zone heating, or just heating occupied rooms. Customers who have existing baseboard or wall heating should turn down thermostats in any unused rooms and close the door. The same goes for lights. They should be turned off any in rooms not being used.
    • Layer up and lower the thermostat. During the day, customers should set their thermostat at 68 degrees. At night or when they’re away, customers should drop their thermostat to 55 to save as much as 10% on their heating costs.
    • Let the sun shine in. Using the natural warmth of the sun can help heat customers’ homes and give furnaces a break. Customers should open their shades on south-facing windows during the day to let the sun in and close them at night to keep the warmth inside.
    • Small business conservation tips. If locations are closed, adjust thermostats to at least 60 degrees or as low as 55 degrees to save money on heating costs and turn off hot water tanks. Also combine items into as few refrigerators as possible and turn off what is not needed.
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