For customers impacted by COVID-19, assistance is available through 211 to help with food, shelter, utility bills, medicine and other essential needs. Eligible customers also can seek assistance through LIHEAP. We proudly partner with other non-profit organizations who are ready to help those in need.
If you've experienced financial hardship, you may qualify for assistance with your energy bill. See the local organizations and new resources that are available.
Hillsborough County Social Services Assistance
Attention residents of Hillsborough County/City of Tampa. The R3 Economic Recovery Financial Assistance for Individuals & Families program can help you qualify for up to $750 for past-due utility bills. In addition, you may be eligible for up to $7,500 for past due rent. Please note: Your landlord must register before you apply for rental assistance. Avoid rejection by having your landlord register first.
Visit the Hillsborough County R3 site for key registration and application dates and to review a list of frequently asked questions.
Emergency Rental and Utility Bill Assistance
- Did you lose your job or wages due to the COVID-19 public health emergency? Are you behind on behind on utilities bills and at risk of shutoff? You may be eligible for help with rent and utilities. OUR Florida – Florida's federally-funded emergency rental assistance program – is now accepting applications. OUR Florida provides renters who qualify with relief on unpaid rent and utility bills so they can continue pursuing work opportunities while they remain safely in their home.
For applicants who qualify, the payments will be made directly to the business, landlord or utility. Qualified applicants may receive up to 15 months of rent payments. This includes 12 months of past due rent and utilities, and three potential months of forward-looking rent payments.
To learn more visit www.ourflorida.com.
- Several Florida cities and counties have received additional emergency rental assistance funding through the Florida Emergency Rental Assistance Program to assist households that are unable to pay rent and utilities due to hardship related to COVID-19.
Eligible households may receive up to 12 months of rent and/or utility assistance. An additional three months of assistance will be available to the most vulnerable households at risk of losing housing (up to 18 months maximum), while funds are available.
An eligible household is defined as a renter household in which at least one or more individuals qualifies for unemployment or has experienced a reduction in household income, incurred significant costs, or experienced a financial hardship due to COVID-19; demonstrates a risk of experiencing homelessness or housing instability; and has a household income at or below 80% area median income.
Apply for assistance: View this list of cities and counties that include a link to complete an application for rent and utility bill assistance. The application can be submitted by either an eligible household or by a landlord on behalf of that eligible household. Funds will be paid directly to landlords and utility service providers.
Additional details for customers residing in the city of Tampa and/or Hillsborough County.
CARES Act Assistance
Agencies throughout Florida have access to funds to help pay utilities through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security or CARES Act. This list provides phone numbers or links to apply for help.
211 connects you with trained and supportive professionals who can provide assistance and more information about public and private health and human services.
Share, a TECO program that provides utility bill assistance to qualifying customers. Share is administered by the Salvation Army and the Catholic Charities Diocese of St. Petersburg who qualify customers to participate.
The Emergency Home Energy Assistance for the Elderly Program (EHEAP) assists low-income households, with at least one person age 60 and older, when the households are experiencing a home energy crisis.
FEMA - Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP)
The Emergency Food and Shelter Program was created by Congress to help meet the needs of hungry and homeless people throughout the United States and its territories by allocating federal funds for the provision of food and shelter.
Where to Find Help in Florida
This publication provides an overview of the Florida Public Service Commission and an explanation of assistance available to consumers for utility-related issues. It also includes general information about the state's electric and gas utilities and helpful conservation tips.
TTY for the hearing-impaired
The Customer Care Department is equipped with a TTY device (special text telephone equipment for customers with hearing and/or speech disabilities). Customers requesting this service can call 711 (TTY only).
Special Needs Registry
In addition to Tampa Electric's Medical Watch program, we encourage our special-needs customers to pre-register with their county's response team that provides aid to persons who require special assistance during evacuations and sheltering because of physical, mental or sensory disabilities.
For more information, please call the special-needs registry in your area:
813-272-5900 (Hillsborough County)
863-534-5600 (Polk County)
727-847-8959 (Pasco County)
727-464-3800 (Pinellas County)