HARRISBURG, Pa. (WTAJ) — The Department of Human Services (DHS) is reminding Pennsylvanians that assistance for home heating, energy and water is still available to low-income households across the state.
Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, most commonly referred to as its acronym “LIHEAP,” season has been extended by two weeks from May 6 to May 20, 2022, allowing additional households the opportunity to apply.
“Pennsylvanians may still need help with their heating and water bills, and those who do should know that programs like LIHEAP and LIHWAP are still available. Households who could benefit from this program should apply today,” said Secretary Snead. “LIHEAP and LIHWAP help some of the commonwealth’s most vulnerable citizens – children, older Pennsylvanians, people with disabilities, and low-income families – make ends meet and keep their homes safer.”
LIHEAP is a federally funded program administered by DHS that provides assistance for home heating bills so low-income Pennsylvanians can stay warm and safe in their homes.
Assistance is available for renters and homeowners, and the LIHEAP application season is currently open until May 20, 2022.
The minimum cash grant for LIHEAP is $500, and the maximum cash grant is $1,500. Those who need the LIHEAP crisis grant – the benefit for people who meet the poverty limits and are in jeopardy of having their heating utility service terminated or have less than two weeks’ worth of fuel – can receive a maximum grant of $1,200.
LIHEAP is distributed directly to a household’s utility company or home heating fuel provider in the form of a grant, so the individual or households do not have to repay assistance.
The income limit for the program is 150 percent of the Federal Poverty Limit. For a household of four, this would be $39,750 gross income per year. Pennsylvanians do not need to know their own eligibility in order to apply for these programs. Those who applied and were denied previously but have experienced a change in circumstances can reapply.
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The Low-Income Household Water Assistance Program (LIHWAP) helps Pennsylvanians with low incomes maintain access to drinking and wastewater services. Assistance is available for families who have past due water bills, had their service terminated, or received a notice indicating that their service will be terminated in the next 60 days. Households can receive LIHWAP grants for both drinking water service and wastewater service. Grants are issued directly to water service providers, and families must meet income requirements.
Pennsylvanians can apply for LIHEAP, LIHWAP, and other public assistance programs online at www.compass.state.pa.us and can apply for Medical Assistance (MA) and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) by phone at 1-866-550-4355.