Texas AARP Asks the Governor for Help

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Texans are being urged to ask Governor Rick Perry to restore funding to a program designed to help low-income customers pay their electric bills.

The Texas wing of a retirement group -- AARP -- has announced the hot line -- 1-888-633-3650.

Callers will hear an introductory message before getting transferred to an operator in Perry's office.

A spokeswoman says Perry directed the Public Utility Commission last month to submit a budget request allowing for a ten percent discount to qualifying households.

The process could take about one year.

But an AARP-Texas official says people need help now because of high temperatures and electric rates.

The 2005 Legislature cut funding for the program, known as the System Benefit Fund.

Some electric providers, including Dallas-based TXU, continue to provide ten percent discounts to qualifying customers.