Low-Income Heating Crisis Grants Now Available

Jan 12, 2010, 17:00 ET from Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare

HARRISBURG, Pa., Jan. 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Department of Public Welfare today reminded Pennsylvania families that federally-funded crisis grants are now available for low-income families facing a heating crisis such as a broken furnace.

"Crisis grants help Pennsylvania families facing the loss of heat during the winter keep themselves and their loved ones safe and warm," said acting Secretary of Public Welfare Harriet Dichter. "Through the opening of the crisis grant program, families can be reassured that additional help is now available should they find themselves in an emergency."

The department expects to provide Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, or LIHEAP, crisis grants to approximately 126,000 households this heating season.  Crisis grants are available to resolve heating emergencies, such as furnace failures or unexpected fuel shortages.

In addition to proof of income and household size, crisis grant applicants must provide a recent bill or a statement from their fuel dealer verifying their customer status and the type of fuel that they use.

LIHEAP also offers cash grants to help income-eligible households pay winter heating bills.

"We have worked to simplify the application process to ensure families are reached as quickly as possible once their eligibility is determined," said Dichter. "Many families who were previously approved for cash grants may not need to submit additional information. We encourage those individuals to contact their caseworkers to assure the right steps are taken so they can stay warm all winter."  

To apply for a crisis grant, visit a county assistance office or submit an application online at www.compass.state.pa.us.

For more information about LIHEAP, visit www.dpw.state.pa.us or call 1-866-857-7095.

Media contact: Stacey Witalec, 717-787-4592

SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare