Friday, November 10, 2000

Program helps pay heat bill

Ohio's HEAP pays up to $175 this winter season

By Kristina Goetz
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Ohioans in danger of having the heat shut off might be able to get some help to pay the bills this winter.

        Gov. Bob Taft announced this week that Emergency Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) applications are being accepted.

        The program “is an excellent resource for Ohio's low-income residents who need assistance paying their winter heating bills,” the governor said.

        “With energy prices rising, it's especially important for Ohioans who qualify for the program to know that these resources are available to help Ohio families stay warm during the cold winter months.”

        Emergency HEAP, administered through the Ohio Department of Development's community development division, is a federally funded program that helps families whose heating service has been disconnected, or who have less than a 10-day supply of bulk fuel.

        Emergency HEAP allows eligible households a one-time payment of up to $175 per winter season to restore or retain home heating services.

        The program also can help pay for heating system repairs in some cases.

        To be eligible for the program, a household must have a gross income at or below 150 percent of the federal poverty guidelines.

        Applications are available at community action agencies and will be accepted through March 31.

       For more information, call the HEAP hot line at (800) 282-0880 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Those who have a telecommunications device for the deaf can call (800) 686-1557.


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