Friday, February 26, 2010

Assistance For High Electric Bills

State Programs Help Pay Electric Bills

LABELLE, FL. -- After a cold start to January in Florida, Governor Charlie Crist reminds eligible Florida residents of the help available to them through the state�s Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which provides emergency financial assistance to low-income families to help heat their homes.

The state announced in early 2009 that a total of $101 million was made available from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for LIHEAP, more than tripling the annual amount for federal fiscal year 2009.  With these funds, the Department of Community Affairs (DCA), which administers the program for the state, and its local provider agencies have already assisted thousands of Floridians and expect to assist more than 150,000 residents overall with crisis utility payments. 

To find out about eligibility, residents should contact their county�s local LIHEAP provider.  Eligibility is based on the number of people in the household and their annual gross income.

Governor Crist also wants to remind residents of the state�s Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP), which received more than $175 million in funding through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and provides significant energy efficient improvements to homes, thereby reducing the energy burden on residents.

These funds will provide up to $6,500 in energy improvements to the homes of more than 19,000 Floridians, including replacing or repairing water heaters, windows and doors, and installing insulation and weather stripping.  Residents interested in this program should also check with their county�s local WAP provider.

Glades County: Agricultural & Labor Program, Inc.: (863) 946-0411

Hendry County: Agricultural and Labor Program, Inc., Labelle: (863) 675-5356, Clewiston: (863) 983-1469

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