COVID-19 Updates

Hawaiian Electric's response to COVID-19


September 15, 9:00 a.m.

Customers urged to act now, apply for CARES Act funds

CARES Act funds

Customers challenged by the financial impact of COVID-19 are urged to apply now for utility bill assistance from government and nonprofit sources. Millions of dollars in federal CARES Act funding are available only until the end of the year.

Customers also should take advantage of Hawaiian Electric's special payment arrangement plans to help keep past due balances manageable. Go to www.hawaiianelectric.com/paymentarrangement to learn more about the interest-free plan options for residential and business customers.

"It's critical for customers to apply for assistance if the COVID-19 pandemic has caused financial strain for their household or business. The time to act is now. It helps everyone in Hawaii when these federal funds are injected into our local economy," said Shelee Kimura, Hawaiian Electric senior vice president of customer service. "We're also offering special payment arrangement plans to help ease the burden for customers – but we need to hear from you in order for us to help."

Read full news release


August 25, 1:00 p.m.

Payment arrangement plans are available

Moratorium on disconnections extended to Dec. 31

Hawaiian Electric service disconnections for nonpayment have been suspended through Dec. 31, 2020. The company urges customers challenged by the financial impact of COVID-19 to seek utility bill assistance from government and nonprofits, and to set up a payment arrangement plan.

The Public Utilities Commission yesterday ordered utilities to extend through Dec. 31 the moratorium on service disconnections for nonpayment. The company voluntarily suspended its collection efforts in March to ensure customers' electric service would not be disrupted while many were staying home. The PUC subsequently ordered all utilities to suspend disconnections and Hawaiian Electric has since been following with the commission's orders and timing for the disconnection moratorium.

In its order to extend the moratorium, the commission also stated that "customers should continue paying their bills to the extent possible during this time, noting that customers will still ultimately be responsible for paying Utility service billings accrued during this suspension."

Read full news release


July 28, 9:30 a.m.

CARES Act funding, other aid available from government, nonprofits

Hawaiian Electric customers who are having difficulty paying their electric bill may qualify for assistance from a number of government programs and nonprofit agencies offering help to those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hawaiian Electric suspended collection efforts in March to ensure customers’ electric service was not disrupted during COVID-19-related orders to stay at home. Disconnection notices and disconnections for nonpayment will resume after Sept. 1. Late fees resume after Sept. 15.

To avoid disconnection, customers who are having trouble paying their electric bill must contact Hawaiian Electric to set up a payment plan.

Read full news release


July 21, 9:30 a.m.

Hawaiian Electric offers payment plans to help customers

To assist residents and businesses dealing with the financial toll of the coronavirus pandemic, Hawaiian Electric is offering special payment plan options to customers, including extending payments over time.

Hawaiian Electric suspended disconnections and collections activities since March. In accordance with PUC direction, Hawaiian Electric extended its moratorium on disconnections for nonpayment through Sept. 1, and late fees resume after Sept. 15.

By contacting Hawaiian Electric now and signing up for a payment plan, customers can avoid the inconvenience of an electric service interruption.

Read full news release


June 29, 10:00 a.m.

Hawaiian Electric extends moratorium on disconnections for nonpayment through Sept. 1

Hawaiian Electric will extend the moratorium on disconnections for nonpayment through Sept. 1, and urges customers who are having difficulty paying their bill to contact the company well before September to consider payment options.

Hawaiian Electric suspended collection efforts in March to ensure customers’ electric service was not disrupted during COVID-19-related orders to stay at home. On Friday, the Public Utilities Commission gave utilities the option to hold off disconnections through Sept. 1.

Read full news release


June 15, 10:00 a.m.

Land sought for renewable energy development to help state’s economic recovery

In a new initiative that could aid economic recovery and the transition to clean energy, Hawaiian Electric is seeking information from owners of land or even large rooftops and parking lots on the islands of Oahu, Hawaii island, Maui, and Molokai that could be available for future renewable energy projects that will benefit all electric customers.

The request may be viewed and responded to at www.hawaiianelectric.com/landRFI. Responses are requested by July 12, 2020.

Creating renewable energy projects can contribute to the state's economic recovery from the COVID-19 emergency as well as help Hawaii reach its clean energy goals. Clean energy projects create jobs and public revenues as well as reduce electricity costs for all customers. Rooftop and community solar can also help customers reduce their household electricity bills.

Read full news release


June 5, 2:00 p.m.

May electric bill higher? Here’s why

Hawaiian Electric residential customers may be receiving higher bills than last month, for several reasons:

  • For the safety of customers and our workforce and to stop the spread of COVID 19 in the community, we announced in late March that we would scale back meter reading temporarily. As a result, bills were estimated based on each customer’s respective usage in the prior month. We apologize for any misunderstanding or inconvenience.
  • As a result of working together to minimize the spread, Hawaiian Electric was able to safely restart meter reading in May. Customers are now receiving true-up bills that reflect the amount of electricity actually used. For accounts that reduced energy use during the pandemic, the true-up bill will account for any overestimation from the prior estimated bill. For accounts that increased energy usage, the true-up bill will account for any underestimation from the prior estimated bill.
  • Stay-at-home orders resulted in many residents using more electricity in March, April and part of May – air conditioners, computers, lights, appliances – because they didn't go out for school, work and weekend activities. On average, residential customers used about 13 percent more electricity, with above-average users consuming as much as 17 percent more. Depending on the individual customer’s use, the increase could be more or less.

Read full news release


June 1, 9:30 a.m.

Critical Resilience Work Resumes

Hawaiian Electric will resume critical resilience projects such as replacing utility poles – work normally done before hurricane season but delayed due to COVID-19 and stay-at-home orders. Customers will be notified if the scheduled work requires outages.

Hurricane season officially starts today, and Hawaiian Electric is ramping up infrastructure upgrades to ensure public safety and system reliability across Oahu, Maui County and Hawaii Island. With customers adhering to pandemic-related stay-at-home orders, Hawaiian Electric delayed certain resilience and maintenance projects to minimize the number of customer outages that are often needed to perform the work.

Read full news release


May 13, 9:30 a.m.

Virtual Check Presentation

Over $150,000 donated to United Way to support families in need

Hawaiian Electric and HEI employees, and the HEI Charitable Foundation partnered with Aloha United Way (AUW), Maui United Way and Hawaii Island United Way to raise money for the Hawaii COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund. Most of the funds raised will help provide financial relief to those at risk of losing their home or utility services through AUW’s COVID-19 Rent & Utility Assistance Program.

In March, the HEI Charitable Foundation contributed $75,000 to Hawaii’s United Way chapters, which inspired Hawaiian Electric and HEI employees to launch a month-long online giving campaign in April. Employees on Oahu, Maui, Hawaii, Lanai and Molokai raised $37,516. The HEI Charitable Foundation matched every dollar donated by employees, raising the current contribution to $75,032, and bringing the overall total donated to United Way chapters statewide to $150,032 for COVID-19 relief.

Read full news release


May 12, 10:00 a.m.

Boys & Girls Club Volunteers

$21,000 donation to help Hawaii Island residents

Hawaiian Electric and the Hawaiian Electric Industries Charitable Foundation (HEICF) recently donated $21,000 to three Hawaii Island non-profit organizations that are feeding communities impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

On Hawaii Island, the biggest concern and priority is food security. The Boys & Girls Club of the Big Island, The Food Basket, and Activate Hawaii Aid each received $5,000 from HEICF to support their ongoing efforts to provide fresh produce, shelf-stable food, and prepared meals to Hawaii Island families. These donations are in addition to the $2,000 each organization received from Hawaiian Electric last month.

Photo courtesy of Boys & Girls Club of the Big Island.

Read full news release


April 30, 5:00 p.m.

Maui Food Bank Donation

$20,000 donation to Maui Food Bank to help Molokai residents

More than 33,000 pounds of food will be distributed by the Maui Food Bank to Molokai residents in need through a $20,000 contribution from the Hawaiian Electric Industries Charitable Foundation (HEICF). HEI is the parent company of Hawaiian Electric, which supplies power to Maui, Molokai, Lanai, Oahu and Hawaii Island.

The donation will support additional shipments this week and in May to supplement Maui Food Bank's regular monthly delivery of food to Molokai. Once delivered, 19 partner agencies across the island distribute safe, nutritious, and fresh food to individuals, families, kids, seniors on fixed incomes, the homeless and anyone who is at risk of going hungry.

Read full news release


April 29, 9:00 a.m.

Moratorium on service disconnections extended through June 30

Hawaiian Electric has suspended service disconnections for nonpayment through June 30 to ensure customers’ electricity needs are met as stay-at-home orders are extended due to the coronavirus pandemic

Customers should NOT worry about their power being shut off due to nonpayment through the end of June, and any threat of immediate disconnection unless payment is made received before June 30 should be treated as a scam. Customers experiencing financial hardship because of the pandemic are urged to contact Hawaiian Electric to discuss payment arrangements and options.

Hawaiian Electric continues its modified operations on Oahu, Maui County and Hawaii Island to reduce the potential spread of coronavirus, which includes extending the closure of its walk-in payment centers through June 30.

Read full news release


April 7, 8:00 a.m.

Hawaii Emergency Laulima Partnership (H.E.L.P.)

Maui County Mayor Michael Victorino announced this week that applications are now being accepted for financial assistance through the Hawaii Emergency Laulima Partnership (H.E.L.P.) program.

The H.E.L.P. program offers financial assistance for Maui County residents with essential needs such as food, personal hygiene, medicine, rent, mortgage, utility services, phone or internet services, car payments, and other necessities.

"The health and well-being of our residents are our top priority," Mayor Victorino said. "Relief efforts such as the H.E.L.P. program provide vital financial support to our residents, so they can stay healthy and provide for their families during this difficult time."

Read Maui County news release


March 27, 9:15 a.m.

Hawaiian Electric adjusts operations due to coronavirus

Hawaiian Electric continues to adjust its operations to reduce the potential spread of coronavirus, including postponing less urgent repair and maintenance work, and closing walk-in customer payment centers at least through April.

None of the operational changes being made will interrupt electric service to customers.

  • Until further notice, the company is reducing the number of meter readers sent out across its five-island service territory.
  • Service disconnections are suspended through May 17, an extension from April 17.
  • Walk-in customer payment centers will remain closed at least through April 30 rather than reopen on March 30 as originally planned.

Read full news release


March 25, 2:30 p.m.

Don't be scammed!

Thieves targeting customers during coronavirus pandemic

Scammers are trying to capitalize on coronavirus fears by pretending to be Hawaiian Electric and threatening to disconnect customers' electric service unless "overdue" bills are paid. Don't be scammed!

Hawaiian Electric has received dozens of fraud reports from across our five-island service territory since late last week, with many more likely going unreported. Today alone, there were 23 fraud reports received on Oahu by 1 p.m.

Customers have also reported receiving threatening texts from Hawaiian Electric asking for payment. Hawaiian Electric does not text customers to request payment.

Read full news release


March 20, 9:30 a.m.

How to save energy while WFH (working from home)

As we all take precautions against the spread of COVID-19, you may be working from home and wondering about increased electricity costs. The good news is there are ways to keep your electricity bill under control. You can find many tips online for saving energy at home.

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March 19, 10:00 a.m.

Funds to support families in need during health crisis

The HEI Charitable Foundation (HEICF) has contributed $50,000 to the Hawaii Foodbank and pledged another $75,000 to United Way agencies in support of their efforts to assist Hawaii families in need during the COVID-19 pandemic. HEI is the parent company of Hawaiian Electric, American Savings Bank and Pacific Current.

Read full news release


March 17, 4:00 p.m.

Hawaiian Electric suspends disconnections for 30 days

Hawaiian Electric will suspend service disconnections for 30 days so customers who are financially challenged by the coronavirus pandemic don't have to worry about losing electric service.

Service disconnections of both residential and commercial customers will be suspended through at least April 17. Depending on the situation at that time, the special assistance period may be extended.

Customers facing financial hardship are urged to call Customer Service so payment options and schedules can be arranged to help keep payments manageable.

Read full news release


March 16, 3:00 p.m.

Pay From Home

Hawaiian Electric to temporarily close walk-in payment centers at noon Wednesday, plans to reopen March 30

Hawaiian Electric will temporarily close its payment centers starting at noon Wednesday, March 18, to minimize risk related to COVID-19 for both customers and employees. The company will reassess next week whether the centers should reopen on Monday, March 30.

This temporary measure is needed to increase social distancing as recommended by state and federal health officials. However, customers still have numerous options to make payment.

Read full news release


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