Mt. Vernon Register-News

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August 31, 2010

Energy assistance program available

MT. VERNON — Appointments for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program will begin being distributed Wednesday for households needing help with their winter heating bills.

“We don’t know exactly what we’re going to do, but we’re going to get started on applications for elderly and disabled households,” explained Kim Rutherford, energy assistance coordinator for Crosswalk Community Action Agency, which administers LIHEAP funding for Jefferson, Franklin and Williamson counties. “In November, we will start with everyone else. We’ll take applications until funding runs out or May 31, whichever comes first.”

Eligibility is based upon gross income 30 days prior to the date of application and is $1,354 for a one-person household; $1,821 for two-person households; $2,289 for three-person households; and $2,756 for four person households. September and October have been set aside as the priority period for eligible elderly age 60 and over and those who are disabled drawing a disability income.

Jefferson County households may visit the outreach site at the Illinois Department of Employment Security, 333 Potomac Blvd., Suite E, to receive an appointment.

“People need to know that they don’t have to go Sept. 1,” Rutherford added. “They can go on Sept. 2 or the next day or even the week after. But I do encourage to make an appointment as soon as possible.”

All other households meeting income guidelines will be able to receive an appointment on a first-come, first-serve basis beginning Nov. 1.

In addition, any eligible households which have been disconnected from their utility or who is at or below 25 percent on a delivered fuel and cannot get a delivery on their own, may qualify for Re-Connection Assistance, information states. Emergency Re-Connection applications will begin Oct. 1.

For more information about LIHEAP, you may call Crosswalk Community Action Agency at 937-3581. Please do not call the Illinois Department of Employment Security office.

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