By Kenneth Hart - CNHI News Service
Jan. 1, 2014 — The crisis phase of the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program or LIHEAP, will begin on Jan. 13.
The program is administered in Boyd, Greenup, Carter, Elliott and Lawrence counties by the Northeast Kentucky Community Action Agency.
According to Northeast, with the increase in fuel costs that cold weather creates, many low-income families are unable to pay their January heating bills and may be facing shutoff. Others may run out of bulk fuel, such as kerosene, wood, coal or propane, much earlier than planned and need assistance with fuel costs to heat their homes.
A household may be considered in a home heating crisis situation when:
• it is within four days of running out of bulk fuel.
• it has received a disconnect notice if natural gas or electricity is the heat source.
• its home heating costs are included as an undesignated portion of the rent and an eviction notice for non-payment of rent has been received.
To qualify for crisis assistance, a household must meet income eligibility guidelines by having grosss monthly income at or below 130 percent of the federal poverty level — $1,245 for one person, $1,681 for two; $2,116 for three, $2,552 for four, $2,987 for five, $3,423 for six, $3,858 for seven and $4,294 for eight.
Verification of a crisis situation must be presented at the time of application. For all bulk fuels, verification of a crisis situation may be self-declared by the applicant. For natural gas or electrically heated households, the applicant must present a disconnect/past due notice. Each applicant must be advised that CAA staff may perform on-site verification on a limited number of households.
Applications will be taken at all Northeast offices. Funds for LIHEAP are administered by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
KENNETH HART can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (606) 326-2654.