Community Partners Announce Assistance for Furloughed Federal Employees

U.S. Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham

ALBUQUERQUE – U.S. Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham (NM-01) today announced that several New Mexico community partners have offered to assist federal employees furloughed as a result of the government shutdown.

At Rep. Lujan Grisham’s Oct. 6 roundtable meeting with furloughed federal employees, participants expressed fear and concern that the government shutdown would cause serious financial hardship for them and their families. The furloughed workers told Lujan Grisham that any missed or delayed paychecks would prevent them from paying their mortgage payments, household utility bills, car loan payments or credit card bills on time.

Following the roundtable meeting, Lujan Grisham reached out to community partners to see if they would be able to help in any way. Additionally, several credit unions, banks, utility providers and other community partners contacted Lujan Grisham’s office with offers of assistance for furloughed New Mexicans experiencing hardship.

“New Mexico’s hardworking, dedicated federal employees are innocent victims in this reckless, irresponsible government shutdown,” Lujan Grisham said. “They don’t deserve to have their utilities turned off or their credit score downgraded because they’re not allowed go to work and earn a paycheck. That’s why I’m proud to be working with our community partners to help furloughed New Mexicans make it through this difficult time.”

The following community partners have offered to provide assistance to impacted New Mexicans:

Los Alamos National Bank (LANB) – LANB is rolling out a program to provide relief for furloughed federal employees called “LANB S.T.R.O.N.G.” It contains four main relief options for furloughed federal employees: payment deferrals on consumer loans and credit cards (1 month); home mortgage loan payment forbearance (up to 6 months); waived overdraft fees; and short-term relief loans (for new customers as well). Furloughed federal employees can contact LANB at (800) 684-5262 to receive assistance.

Federal Credit Unions: Kirtland FCU, New Mexico Educators FCU, Sandia Laboratory FCU, U.S. New Mexico FCU – All have programs in place to assist members affected by the government shutdown. They will work with their members on an individual basis and will offer to extend loan due dates, waive fees, or take other actions that are in the member’s best interest. For specific information about the services each FCU is offering, please click on their name above.

New Mexico Community Banks – Customers who are facing a furlough from the federal government can call their bank and ask to speak with a senior official regarding their financial situation. Banks will work with customers on an individual basis to help mitigate any hardship caused by the government shutdown.

CenturyLink – CenturyLink offers flexible payment arrangements for furloughed federal government workers who contact them. CenturyLink has experience taking similar actions when customers have been impacted by weather disasters such as fires, floods, hurricanes and tornadoes, providing a measure of relief to their distress. Customers can contact CenturyLink at (800) 244-1111.

New Mexico Gas Company – Customers who are facing a furlough from the federal government can contact customer service at (888) 664-2726 to request a financial hardship payment agreement.

PNM – Customers who are facing a furlough from the federal government can contact customer service at (888) 342-5766 to request a financial hardship payment agreement. PNM will not disconnect service of customers impacted by the government shutdown, provided that the customer can show appropriate documentation (e.g., a furlough letter), and will work with customers to develop payment arrangements.

Wells Fargo – Wells Fargo is committed to working with any qualified customer impacted by the government shutdown. Stores are open and team members are ready to help customers with all of their financial services needs. For New Mexico customers, Wells Fargo has set up a dedicated help line to assist federal employees and military members who are affected by the shutdown. Please contact Loretta Quintana at (505) 255-4372.

YMCA of Central New Mexico – YMCA of Central New Mexico is offering free memberships to furloughed federal employees and will work with current members to make sure their services go uninterrupted during these difficult times.

Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority (ABCWUA) – The Water Authority provides payment agreements for any customer experiencing a documented financial hardship. Any federal furloughed employee who requires such a payment agreement should contact (505) 842-9287.

Bank of America – Bank of America’s Customer Assistance Program is in place and they are prepared to help any customer facing financial difficulty as a result of the government shutdown. Every situation is different, so if customers are experiencing difficulty, Bank of America asks that customers visit their local Bank of America Banking Center or call (800) 432-1000 so Bank of America can work with them on a solution that makes sense for their situation.

Please note that this is not an exhaustive list. Any community partners who are already assisting furloughed federal employees or those wishing to assist furloughed employees in any way can contact Rep. Lujan Grisham’s Albuquerque office at (505) 346-6781.

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