- Associated Press - Friday, March 27, 2015

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - State officials are reminding Kansans who’ve fallen behind on electric and natural gas bills that they will lose some protection against shutoffs next week.

The utility-regulating Kansas Corporation Commission notes that Tuesday is the last day of the annual Cold Weather Rule.

The rule is in effect from November through the following March. It bars utilities regulated by the state from cutting off electric or gas service whenever temperatures are expected to drop below 35 degrees within the next 24 hours.

Disconnections can resume only if the temperature is forecast to top 35 degrees for the next 48 hours.

The rule also requires utilities to offer customers a 12-month payment plan to settle outstanding bills.

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