Deadline nears to apply for state assistance for winter heating bills

The Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services is accepting applications for the Low Income Energy Assistance Program through Wednesday, March 31.

Applications must be received by the close of business on that day.

Funding for the LIEAP program is provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Community Service through the Federal Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program.

LIEAP provides an annual benefit to help qualifying households pay winter heating bills. Individuals with disabilities, elderly persons and families with children are the primary groups assisted.

So far this year, qualifying households have been provided an average benefit of $433.50.

To qualify, applicants must be responsible for direct payment of their heating bills. Income eligibility guidelines are set at 130 percent of the federal poverty level.

Persons with monthly incomes within the following guidelines may receive LIEAP benefits: $1,174 for one peson living in the home; $1,579 for two people; $1,984 for three people; $2,389 for four people; $2,794 for five people.

For households larger than five people, add $406 for each additional person.

The level of benefit varies according to household income, number of persons living at the address, type of dwelling, type of heating fuel, and utility rates. Applicants must demonstrate they have made payments on their heating utility bill two out of the past three months and those payments must be equal to 10 percent of the household?s gross income or $80, whichever is less.

LIEAP applications can be requested by calling toll-free 1-800-432-0043. Visit ks-energy-assistance.com to apply online.

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