UNION, N.J., Oct. 27, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- With the winter heating season just around the corner, Elizabethtown Gas, through the charitable arm of its parent company, AGL Resources, is doing its part to help residents stay warm this winter.
The AGL Resources Private Foundation donated $120,000 in energy assistance grants to eight organizations in the Elizabethtown Gas service territory.
The recipients included: NJ Shares, United Way of Greater Union County, Info Line of Central Jersey, Catholic Charities, Union County Puerto Rican Occupational Center for Education Economic Development (PROCEED), Puerto Rican Association Human Development (PRAHD), Puerto Rican Action Board (PRAB), and North West NJ Community Action Program (NORWESCAP).
Elizabethtown Gas also wants to ensure customers take advantage of several programs that can help pay their home heating bills and save money by reducing their energy usage.
Starting Nov. 1, residents can apply for federal assistance funds through the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program or LIHEAP. Administered through the state Department of Community Affairs, the program is designed to help reduce monthly heating costs by providing a benefit to low- and fixed-income residents, including senior citizens.
"Our primary goal is to ensure that heating assistance is made available to all that qualify," said Don Carter, vice president and general manager of Elizabethtown Gas. "Residents who live on a fixed income should not have to choose between paying for food and medicine or heat. LIHEAP funds can help offset the costs of heating a home in the winter."
To qualify for LIHEAP heating assistance, a household's monthly income cannot exceed 200 percent of the federally established poverty level. For more information about LIHEAP or to locate an application agency in their area, residents should dial 2-1-1.
Those who call 2-1-1 also may request a referral to one of the many other energy assistance programs that are available.
State and local programs
- Universal Service Fund (USF) is a low-income energy assistance program funded by the state's Societal Benefits Fund. It provides monthly credits on gas and electric bills if the state Department of Community Affairs determines that the bill exceeds 6 percent of household income for qualified applicants. Call 866-240-1347.
- USF Fresh Start is a state-funded program offering automatic enrollment for first-time USF customers whose past-due amount is greater than $60. Participants who pay 100 percent of their current gas bills for 12 months, over a 15 month period of time, will have their past-due balances erased. There is no need to apply if already enrolled in USF. Those USF enrollees eligible for the Fresh Start program will automatically receive a letter.
- The Lifeline Credit Program provides an annual grant of $225 per person divided between their natural gas and electric bills, and is administered by the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services. This program is available to senior citizens 65 and older who meet income requirements and adults 18 and older who receive Social Security disability. Call 800-792-9745.
- New Jersey SHARES is a program designed for those households that have a higher income than guidelines allow in order to qualify for energy assistance programs. It provides a one-time grant, which is administered by local social service agencies. Call 866-792-4273.
About Elizabethtown Gas
Elizabethtown Gas, a wholly owned subsidiary of AGL Resources (NYSE: AGL), provides natural gas delivery service to approximately 276,000 residential, business and industrial natural gas customers in New Jersey. In operation since 1855, the company serves parts of Union, Middlesex, Sussex, Warren, Hunterdon, Morris and Mercer counties. For more information, visit www.elizabethtowngas.com.
About AGL Resources
AGL Resources (NYSE: AGL), an Atlanta-based energy services company, serves approximately 2.3 million customers in six states. The company also owns Houston-based Sequent Energy Management, an asset manager serving natural gas wholesale customers throughout North America. As an 85-percent owner in the SouthStar partnership, AGL Resources markets natural gas to consumers in Georgia under the Georgia Natural Gas brand. The company also owns and operates two high-deliverability natural gas storage facilities: Jefferson Island Storage & Hub near the Henry Hub in Louisiana and Golden Triangle Storage in Texas. For more information, visit www.aglresources.com.
SOURCE AGL Resources