Colder temperatures typically lead to increased utility bills. Are you or someone you know qualified for some extra help this winter? There are several programs available that are income-based. There are also a few that are not.
The Western Reserve Area Agency on Aging, which serves Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Lorain, and Medina Counties, has guides available for free on their website. Potential assistance with paying heating bills includes:
- Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP)
- Winter Crisis Program (WCP)
- Emergency Home Energy Assistance Program (E-HEAP)
- Ohio Energy Credit, and Percentage of Income Payment Plan (PIPP)
There is also possible assistance available for making your home warmer and more energy efficient from the Home Weatherization Assistance Program (HWAP). The Ohio Department of Development and the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) also explain these programs on their websites.
The Lake County Council on Aging has a detailed Winter Heating Guide on page 7 of their quarterly newspaper publication, titled the BRIDGE.
Did you know that a medical certification form can be filled out by a licensed medical professional to prevent gas from being shut off when it would be especially dangerous to the health of a permanent member of your household? There are no income restrictions and use cannot exceed 90 days in any 12-month period. Contact your gas company for an application.
In addition, the Patriot Plan maintains gas and/or electric service while you are serving on active duty. It cannot be disconnected for nonpayment.
If you know of any additional assistance programs that may be helpful to others this winter, please share them.
– Posted by Christy Zeyer, OSBA Certified Paralegal