Federal Government Increases Funding for Low-income Home Energy Assistance Programs

Suzi Oppenheimer

January 03, 2012

Senator Oppenheimer (D-Mamaroneck) today applauded the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for releasing more than $845 million in additional funding for states to help low-income residents with home heating and energy costs.

The low-income Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) is a federally funding initiative administered locally by the Westchester County Department of Social Services (DSS).  The program assists low-income households, including families with children and seniors, with their home energy needs such as heating in the winter and cooling in the summer.  HEAP also assists with weatherization costs to help homeowners make their homes more energy efficient.

According to HHS, New York State will receive over $46 million in additional HEAP funding.  This amount is on top of the $375 million in low-income home energy assistance funding that the state received in October 2011 for the fiscal year 2012 program. 

“Residents struggling with their home energy costs should contact the Westchester County Department of Social Services as soon as possible to see if they qualify for HEAP assistance,” advised Oppenheimer.  The Westchester County DSS can be reached at (914) 995-5619.  Additional information about the program can be found on the DSS website at http://socialservices.westchestergov.com/home-energy-assistance.