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Monthly Surcharge Helps Low Income Families

Established by state law, a surcharge of 93 cents per meter per month will begin appearing on bills starting in September.

The surcharge funds the Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund established by the Michigan legislature as a long-term solution to assist low-income, at-risk residents with their utility bills. The intention is to provide funds to prevent disconnection of service and to help people become more energy self-sufficient. The program is funded by Michigan electric consumers through the surcharge. Funds are distributed by the state Department of Human Services to help qualifying residents during the heating season with energy bills.

Great Lakes Energy joins other electric utilities in Michigan that have the surcharge, which by law cannot exceed $1 per meter per month. GLE members who have more than one meter at the same residential location would still only pay one surcharge per month.

The surcharge will appear as MI Low Income Energy Fund on your bill.

Without the surcharge, the cooperative’s ability to collect payments on delinquent accounts during the heating season would be limited and qualifying low-income families within GLE’s service area may not be able to receive energy assistance funding. The surcharge gives GLE the ability to disconnect non-paying members year-round.

Visit our website or contact your local area representative or senator if you would like more information abut the Michigan Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund (LIEAF). 

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k sydow
k sydow
4 years ago

And so when was the vote taken to create this low energy assistance fund??? And why do I not have a say on it? When will people start being held accountable for their own decisions and bills?? I do what I can to budget my own finances for myself and a family of 3…. now I have to pay for more people?? Not fair! NOT cool!! Are GLE board members also paying the same 93 cents each month? And how long will that remain at that fee? I already participate in the People Fund… Are the MI legislators that voted… Read more »

Great Lakes Energy
4 years ago
Reply to  k sydow

Thank you for your comments. This program was created through state legislative action. As a voter, you do have the power to elect officials who make these decisions. Your questions about the legislation can be directed to them by visiting

Great Lakes Energy
4 years ago

In response to the additional questions added to your post, the surcharge is adjusted annually by the State of Michigan per state law. The charge cannot exceed $1 per month. The charge funds the Low Income Energy Assistance Fund and is billed through electric bills so we would presume any legislators who use electricity also pay the surcharge through their own personal electric bills. The surcharge is very different from the People Fund, which is not a state mandated program and goes directly to the local communities we serve to fund a variety of deserving nonprofit groups and organizations, not… Read more »

4 years ago

So, since I am Just barely over the state’s assistance guidelines and will not qualify for any of this you will have no restrictions to cut my power and charge all your additional disconnect reconnect fees while. others can get their utilities paid for them and use the money that should be paying their power bill to keep their cable tv bill paid and Cable turned on while I can’t afford to have it in my house.
Love the way this system works.

Great Lakes Energy
4 years ago
Reply to  Stumper24

We do offer payment arrangements and will work with you should you fall behind on your payment and are unable to get assistance from agencies. The surcharge was enacted by state legislative action. Please feel free to visit and contact your legislator.

4 years ago

Didn’t intend for you to take my comments as aimed at you.
Just venting over a very unfair system that honestly. Voting does not change.
They still do anything they damn well please.

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