Winter is coming, and along with it higher heating bills.
Fortunately for some New York families, financial relief is being made available through the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP), a federally funded program that provides up to $976 in heating assistance to low- and middle-income households and senior citizens.
Applications for the program, which is overseen by the state’s Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, can be submitted starting Tuesday, Nov. 1.
Eligibility is determined by several factors, including income, household size, and how the home is heated.
A family of four may have a maximum gross monthly income of $5,485, or an annual gross income of $65,829, and still qualify for assistance.
Eligible households can receive one regular benefit per season and may also be eligible for an emergency benefit if they are in danger of running out of heating fuel or having their utility service disconnected.
Applications can be submitted at local departments of social services in person or over the phone. Funding is provided on a first-come, first-served basis.
Nearly 1.7 million HEAP benefits were issued during the winter of 2021-2022, the highest in at least the past five years, according to Gov. Kathy Hochul’s office.
"We remain committed to ensuring our most vulnerable New Yorkers have access to assistance and programs that will help address rising costs for heating their homes this winter," Hochul said.
"The Home Energy Assistance Program is a vital lifeline for countless New York families, and I encourage all who are eligible to apply for these benefits which will provide much needed financial relief."
Assistance is also available to help homeowners with broken furnaces or boilers through the HEAP Heating Equipment Repair and Replacement program.
Eligible homeowners may receive up to $4,000 for a repair and $8,000 for a replacement.
To learn more about the Home Energy Assistance Program, visit the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance website.
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