Promise of utility cutoffs for nonpayment concerns Minden residents

“There’s going to be people without power in this heat, and I don’t think it’s fair”
Published: Aug. 29, 2023 at 10:29 PM CDT
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MINDEN, La. (KSLA) — Nobody wants to be without utilities during this heat.

But the City of Minden told KSLA News 12 on Tuesday that if residents have not paid their bill, they’re cutting off their utilities.

KSLA News 12 has received several messages from concerned citizens about the cutoffs and what it could mean during this heat wave.

We received a host of emails and phone calls about Minden’s utility cutoff deadline. And many are worried about being cut off during these triple-digit temperatures.

So KSLA News 12′s Tamer Knight went to Minden to get answers to what residents can expect in the coming days.

“We’ve been having heat waves and everything. It’s let up for a couple days, but it’s coming back. And there’s going to be people without power in this heat, and I don’t think it’s fair,” Minden resident Shaun Stewart said.

Some residents are afraid of their utilities being shut off sometime in the near future after failure to make payments that were due Aug. 10.

“The City of Minden has a policy. And the way we handle our utility bills is on the 10th of every month the bill is due,” Mayor Nick Cox said. However, the mayor said there is a grace period after the 10th.

“And then on the fourth Tuesday of every month is what we call the cutoff date. That is the date where the grace period is over, and that’s when we start cutoffs.”

The mayor said the city actually hasn’t made any disconnections since June. In fact, he said, the city takes into consideration other factors, including government orders.

“On the cutoff date, we stop and evaluate external factors such as the weather, the temperature, the heat index and kind of evaluate that,” Cox said. “We never want to do something that would leave our citizens unsafe.”

At this time, he said, no cutoffs have taken place.

When asked about the cutoff notice posted on the City of Minden’s Facebook Page, Cox said it’s a recurring post that generates each month.

“It really got the attention of the people it needed to get the attention of. And it’s really helped our numbers and got people to pay in a timely manner.”

Despite the city’s leniency with utility cutoffs, he urged everyone to pay their bill on time because it will accumulate, and you will face disconnection if the balance is unpaid once they move forward with cutoffs.