Utility: Expect your heating bill to go up

LANSING, Mich. (WILX) -- Consumers Energy sent out an e-mail to its customers saying the utility wanted to reach out to let them know this month's bill will also include a few additional days of energy use compared to last.

Consumers Energy says most of its bills are for 30 days, but there are times when the billing cycle is either shorter or longer, based on the number of days when a meter can be read and is adjusted for weekends and federal holidays.

Consumers Energy representatives say that for about a quarter of its customers their January bill is for 33 days.

The utility says the combination of the additional days and the recent cold temperatures will likely affect most energy bills.

Consumers Energy is encouraging people to enroll in one of their budget plans to help pay for the increased bill.

Visit their website or call 2-1-1 for help.

It's available to people all over mid-Michigan regardless of which utility they use.

The State Public Service Commission also provides millions of dollars through the Michigan Energy Assistance program.

Resources available by calling 2-1-1.

Consumers Energy customers can find payment plans and payment assistance.

Michigan Department of Health and Human Services offers temporary heat and utility assistance for low-income families.