Alliant Energy offering aid program
CEDAR RAPIDS — Alliant Energy and community partners have teamed up to create the Project ReConnect program to fund electrical repairs that will allow power to be restored after the derecho on Aug. 10.
As Alliant Energy has restored power to communities following the storm, many customers are unable to receive available power due to extensive damage to their exterior electrical system that is the responsibility of the customer. This includes the meter box, service mast and weatherhead.
Through Project ReConnect, Alliant Energy through its foundation is providing funds to United Way of East Central Iowa (UWECI), Hawkeye Area Community Action Program (HACAP), Mid-Iowa Community Action and Community Action of Eastern Iowa to assist its customers who can’t afford the expenses of an electrician to make necessary repairs to their home.
Project ReConnect covers the costs for a licensed electrician to make these repairs. Once the repairs are made, Alliant Energy can restore available power to the home. The cost for an electrician to make these repairs can be up to $1,500.
Alliant Energy customers who need financial assistance to pay for these repairs are encouraged to contact their local community action agency, such as HACAP, Mid-Iowa Community and Community Action of Eastern Iowa, to apply. Income guidelines will be applied to customers who apply to these agencies.
“We understand how incredibly difficult it is to be without power. We are proud of our crews’ efforts in restoring power to the majority of our customers, and we won’t stop until all the lights are back on,” Terry Kouba, president of Alliant Energy’s Iowa energy company, said. “We are pleased to partner with several organizations to help our most vulnerable customers who are hurting and rebuild the communities we live in and love.”
To date, Alliant Energy through its foundation has provided $250,000 to Project ReConnect statewide. This includes a match that doubles the amount that Alliant Energy employees, retirees and the board of directors are giving to the program. UWECI is donating $40,000 for the five-county area they serve in eastern Iowa. Also, Border States Electric, a long-time business partner of Alliant Energy, is providing an additional $10,000. Alliant Energy and its foundation are hopeful that the total amount to be given to Project ReConnect will reach over $400,000.
The community action agencies are identifying eligible customers and dispatching electricians to customers as quickly as possible.
“Community Action Agencies express our thanks for the quick response of the Alliant Energy Foundation to address the needs of Iowans who are struggling to get their electricity reconnected due to the recent derecho. Project ReConnect will allow hundreds of Iowans to take an important step towards recovery from the damage they have incurred,” Lana Shope, executive director of the Iowa Community Action Association, said. “Project ReConnect is another example of Iowans coming together to help our communities address the needs of our friends and neighbors and we appreciate the leadership of the Alliant Energy Foundation in making Project Reconnect happen.”