More LIHEAP Funds for Wisconsin
MADISON—Governor Jim Doyle announced today an additional $17 million in Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funds to aid low-income Wisconsin families pay their energy bills this heating season. This funding is in addition to the $130 million in funds announced on October 1, 2008, bringing Wisconsin’s total funding this heating season to a record $147 million for low-income energy assistance, nearly double the funding Wisconsin received last year.
“These funds will help us further reduce the burden of heating costs for the thousands of hard-working low-income families across the state who struggle to pay for their basic needs,” Governor Doyle said. “I applaud the cooperation of Wisconsin’s congressional delegation that helped release these crucial funds.”
Wisconsin continues to be a national leader in low-income energy assistance. The state estimates that over 165,000 will need assistance paying their energy bills this heating season. With the additional funding as part of the 2009 Continuing Resolution, the state estimates that the average benefit to low-income families will increase to $569.
Households eligible for energy assistance may receive payments under the LIHEAP and the state public benefits program. Payments depend upon household size, income level, and home energy costs. Wisconsin’s Home Energy Assistance Program helps households with incomes below 150 percent of the federal poverty level pay for home energy costs. Households may also qualify for crisis assistance benefits which can include purchase of home heating fuel, reconnection of utility service, temporary shelter, and heating unit replacements or repairs.
To receive more information about applying for the Wisconsin Home Energy Assistance Program go www.energyhelp.wi.gov or call Energy Help Hotline at 1-800-522-3014.