ST. LOUIS – Winter is on its way, and soon will come lower temperatures and higher heating bills. For Spire customers with limited incomes, the utility company is committing an additional $500,000 to help people pay their bills.

“We definitely know there is a need out there,” said Vonda Cotton, Community Outreach Specialist with Spire.

She sees the need for funding in our community.

“We can alleviate some of that stress for our customers by giving them information and access to some of our utility assistance programs,” said Cotton.

Earlier this year, the Missouri Public Service Commission approved Spire Missouri’s extra half-a-million-dollar commitment. The funding supports low-income heating assistance, including weatherization and the critical medical needs program. It helps customers with medical emergencies keep their gas on while their health issues are addressed.

“We definitely will pause on that for 30 days to allow them to get some relief without the threat of disconnection or losing service,” said Cotton.

Cotton says participation in the program requires certification from a health care provider or caseworker. It’s just one way Spire customers can get relief when times are tough. Relief Vonda Cotton is happy to help give, and St. Louisans are grateful to receive.

“Just to see the smiles or even get the hugs, that’s what does it for me, actually,” said Cotton.