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Congressman Higgins & Legislator Kennedy Announce Additional HEAP Funding | Families

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Congressman Higgins & Legislator Kennedy Announce Additional HEAP Funding
Families, Health, News

Feds Release $12 Million to Help NY Seniors, Residents Afford Heating Bills


Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-27) and Erie County Legislator Tim Kennedy announced New York will receive $12,793,718 in emergency energy assistance funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  The Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) funding to NYS is formula based and will be distributed to eligible county applicants on a first come first serve basis. 

This funding is directed to low-income families and seniors to help them heat their homes.  During the 2009-2010 HEAP season, the program provided 203,237 benefits totaling $51.9 million in assistance to residents in Erie County. 

“With the end of summer here and the colder months approaching, this is timely good news for local seniors living on a tight, fixed income,” Congressman Higgins said. 

“No one should have to choose between heat, food or important medication, yet these are decisions many local seniors face," Kennedy said. "This funding will free local residents from being forced to make that choice, lifting a huge burden off their shoulders.”

Kennedy noted Erie County recently completed the HEAP AC Cooling Assistance Program which kept residents safe during this summer’s extremely warm temperatures.

The winter HEAP season runs from November to May.  Seniors who received HEAP in 09-10 should receive an early HEAP application mail by mid-October.  Eligibility for heating assistance is based on income and household size.  For further information visit Erie County’s HEAP website at: http://www.erie.gov/depts/seniorservices/finance/utility_heap.asp

The $101 million in federal contingency funds released nationwide today are in addition to the $4.5 billion in HEAP block grant funding and the $490 million in emergency contingency funds received by states earlier this year. Funds released today are the remaining from FY 2010 LIHEAP contingency fund available for this fiscal year.

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