NewsRadio 920 WHJJ and the Associated Press

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island regulators have extended a moratorium to prevent utilities from shutting off service to customers trying to pay gas and electric heating bills.

The Commission cited the past winter that was longer and colder than usual. The Providence Journal reported that regulators voted to extend the winter moratorium by two weeks until May 1.

The Commission has voted before to extend the moratorium for customers with financial hardships, serious illness or children younger than 2. It's also included the elderly and the jobless.

Regulators responded to a request from the George Wiley Center, a poverty advocacy group in Pawtucket.

National Grid, Rhode Island's main electric utility and sole supplier of natural gas for heating, told the Commission it agreed to an extended moratorium.

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