MARSHALL COUNTY - With the winter season quickly approaching, many families are already wondering how they will pay for home heating costs.
The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Programs (LIHEAP), offers assistance to families to help cover the cost of energy bills, particularly during the very cold months. The state reports with a struggling economy, the number of households seeking energy assistance over the past few years has reached record numbers.
Eligibility requirements for heating and cooling assistance typically entail the following:
*Income must be at or below 130 percent of the federal poverty level;
*Pay home-cooling costs for which they are responsible either by direct payment or as an undesignated portion of their rent;
*Have liquid resources at or below $2,000 except when a household member has a catastrophic illness, in which case applicants may have as much as $4,000 in liquid assets if those assets are used for medical and living expenses.*A household with a member age 60 or over or with a disabled member who has a liquid resource limit at or below $3,000.
LIHEAP is a short-term aid program that operates its first phase of subsidies in November and December and is available to customers at or below 130 percent of the federal poverty guidelines. For example, a family of four must have a monthly income of no more than $2,422. Applications for the subsidy phase of the program will be accepted alphabetically at all community action agencies from Nov. 5 through Dec. 14.
When applying for LIHEAP assistance, you may need the following:
*Recent copies of your utility bills.
*A recent payroll stub or other proof of current gross income.
*Documentation showing income from Social Security, Unemployment Insurance, pension funds, disability, etc.
*Final utility termination notice (if you've received a shut-off notice from your energy company).
*Proof of current address (e.g., rent receipt, lease or deed, property tax bill).
*Proof of total members living in your household (e.g., birth certificates, school records, etc.).
*Social Security cards (or numbers) for all persons living in your household.
*Proof of U.S. citizenship or permanent residence.
For more information on application dates or qualification information, please call 527-9766, or visit the office of West Kentucky Allied Services at 1107 Poplar Street in Benton.