Monday, September 6, 2010

Heating Assistance for Ohio and Every Other State

It’s officially summer for a little bit more, but in a couple of weeks, the days will be shorter than the nights. Heat (and how to pay for it), will come back into focus. In Ohio, a variety of programs are in play and are easy to find at the state's website, the most prominent one being HEAP, a one-time payment to help low-income residents of the state. By “low income,” they mean less than 200% of the poverty level for your household, or about $44,100 for a household of four people. It's also important to note that if you have had a sudden loss of income and can't qualify under your annual income, you may qualify for the last 3 months.

There are other plans, too, like the Patriot Plan to help the families of some military families on active duty. This prevents shut-offs and helps work out a repayment plan when they come back to civilian life.
Obviously, Ohio is not the only state with such programs. To see all the states’ programs, go to this website, with links for low-income energy plans for each state and links to applications for help. And, if worse comes to worst, there’s a link to the official shutoff policies in each state, along with emergency numbers and links to complaint forms. The secret is to not let the situation go that far. At the liheap website, you can see the office in charge of energy for each state. Contact them or you utility first to see if they can direct you to a suitable plan

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