Department of Human Services (DHS) Secretary Teresa Miller today gave a final reminder of the availability of assistance paying certain utility bills through the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) Recovery Crisis program ahead of its end on Aug. 31.
“These are incredibly difficult times, and that’s why DHS administers safety-net programs like LIHEAP Recovery Crisis – to make difficult times a little easier. But this program is ending on Aug. 31, so it is critical that anybody who needs this assistance reach out and apply now,” said Secretary Miller. “Any Pennsylvanian having trouble paying home energy bills should apply and see if they qualify for a little extra help. There should be no shame or stigma associated with asking for assistance, and no one should be afraid to ask for help.”
LIHEAP provides assistance for home energy bills, helping ensure continuity of energy services for low-income Pennsylvanians. LIHEAP normally runs from November through April, but the Recovery Crisis program can help with Pennsylvanians’ home energy bills, ensuring continuity of energy services for low-income Pennsylvanians. Assistance is available for both renters and homeowners.
“LIHEAP plays a key role in helping households across Pennsylvania maintain essential utility service,” said Public Utility Commission Chairman Gladys Brown Dutrieuille. “As we continue to grapple with the impact of COVID-19, we encourage low-income consumers to make use of the LIHEAP recovery crisis program, as well as exploring other assistance programs available from their utilities, to help keep their families connected and safe.”
The LIHEAP Recovery Crisis Program offers a crisis benefit made directly to utility companies or fuel providers to help offset costs for home utilities.
LIHEAP Recovery Crisis benefits may be available if a household has their main or secondary energy source completely shut-off; is notified that their utility service will be shut off in the next 60 days; has broken energy equipment or leaking lines that must be fixed or replaced; is in danger of being without fuel in 15 days or less; or, owes funds to a utility provider that would constitute a service termination if not for the Public Utility Commission’s moratorium on terminations.
Applications for LIHEAP Recovery Crisis can be submitted online at www.compass.state.pa.us. Those who prefer to submit paper application can print from the website or request an application by phone at 1-800-692-7462 and mail it to their local County Assistance Office (CAO) or place it in a CAO’s secure drop box, if available. Pennsylvanians do not need to know their own eligibility to apply for these programs. While CAOs remain closed, work processing applications, determining eligibility, and issuing benefits continues. If you applied and were denied previously and your financial circumstances have changed, you can reapply.